If you are interested in working in the United States, you are required to obtain a work visa. The H-1B visa is the most common type of work visa, allowing U.S. companies and organizations to hire foreign workers who specialize in a specific field (e.g. medical, engineering, technology, business, architecture, etc.).
To apply for an H-1B visa, an American employer must offer a job position and the applicant must have at least a bachelor’s degree or the equivalent work experience. Although U.S. employers are interested in hiring legal immigrants, many do not understand the process of hiring a foreign national.
The following are three ways to find a U.S. employer to sponsor your H-1B visa:
- Become familiar with the H-1B petition process – To find a U.S. employer willing to hire you, first you need to learn about the H-1B petition process. When you attend an interview and the prospective employer is not familiar with immigration law, you are able to explain to him/her how to successfully obtain the H-1B visa. USCIS begins accepting the petition for next fiscal year from April 1st until the H-1B cap is reached. If your petition is approved, you can start working for your employer on October 1st or later for the next fiscal year.
- Concentrate on companies known for hiring H-1B workers – When a company or organization has a history of hiring foreign nationals and petitioning the H-1B visa on their behalf, it is much easier to obtain employment. Keep in mind, you shouldn’t focus entirely on large corporations. Also consider companies that are small or medium in size, including start-ups.
- Networking – If you are currently outside the United States, you can use social media platforms such as LinkedIn to network with U.S. companies or ask friends and relatives to help you find networking opportunities. If you plan on visiting the U.S., find out if there are any job fairs or networking events happening in or near your destination, so you can speak directly with potential employers.