Organizations recognize that any issues with their internal immigration processes negatively impacts their employee's experience, which in turn impacts the company's ability to hire and retain some of their most critical employees
Immigration is a complex issue. On the short list of information human resources need to comprehend if immigration falls in their wheelhouse is the different employment-based visa types, requirements and education requirements. Additionally, the process of obtaining visas for foreign national employees itself can be difficult, especially in a time of increased government scrutiny and ever-changing government policies. With these factors in mind, employers across industries are seeking a better way to manage their internal immigration processes.
Why Improve The Process?
These days there is heightened awareness among organizations that any inefficiencies within their immigration programs could directly affect their employee experience. Examples of inefficiencies include a breakdown in communications, a less-than-stellar onboarding experience and a lack of support for new foreign national hires during their first months and year of employment. These aren't the only stressors in the immigration process. According to Envoy Global's 2019 Immigration Trends report, the following pain points are the most prominent during the U.S. immigration process:
- Uncertainty of outcome (39%)
- Inefficiency in the process (36%)
- Determining which if any visa the applicant qualifies for (28%)
- Gathering foreign national information and documents (28%)
- Foreign national anxiety (27%)
"Foreign national anxiety is at an all-time high in an era of constantly-changing regulations and never-ending discussion of immigration," said Richard Burke, President and CEO at Envoy Global. "This makes it all the more important for employers to examine their immigration program to ensure the smoothest process possible for foreign national hires."
How To Improve Immigration Programs
Similar to other benefit programs like health insurance and retirement plans, a company's immigration program should also be evaluated on an annual basis. When re-assessing immigration programs, cost is the No.1 reason for doing so, as stated by 50% of respondents in our report. The next two reasons are more open ended. Forty-seven percent of respondents said the awareness of new and better ways of handling the immigration process is a reason for evaluating their program. Similarly, 47% said their company is constantly assessing their immigration program and partners.
Key Factors When Evaluating Immigration Services Provider
When assessing their immigration partners, employers said the experience level of immigration attorneys is the biggest factor. This makes sense, particularly given that today's immigration climate is constantly changing, and experienced lawyers will best help companies navigate new regulations and policies at a moment's notice. Attorney response times and data security are the No. 2 and No. 3 criteria used to evaluate immigration providers. Constant evaluation is also important to ensure companies are partnering with experienced law firms—especially those that utilize cutting edge technology that makes it seamless to manage an immigration program.
At the end of the day, companies shouldn't settle for the status quo. While there isn't a one-size-fits-all approach to immigration, it's important to be aware of better ways to manage internal immigration processes, especially at a time of increased government scrutiny. To learn more about how companies feel about their immigration programs, the current landscape and other trends, download Envoy Global's 2019 Immigration Trends report.
Envoy is pleased to provide you this information, which was prepared in collaboration with Natalie Zakarzecka, who is an Associate Attorney at Global Immigration Associates, P.C. (www.giafirm.com), Envoy's affiliated law firm. Content in this publication is not intended as legal advice, nor should it be relied on as such. For additional information on the issues discussed, consult an Envoy-retained attorney or another qualified professional.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.