US Companies Need More STEM-skilled Talents

STEM or the science, technology, engineering, and math is where it’s at. Any company that wants to grow spectacularly and ride the crest of business disruption will always want to fill their ranks with experts in these fields.

Or at the very least, the STEM field needs a workforce that has the necessary related skills that can help the company introduce the latest innovation that can capture a sizeable number of their market.

Global mobility managers tasked to recruit these talents will be having their hands full, regardless of the recent intense scrutiny that the current administration has been giving H-1B immigrant visas.

Recent studies have shown that many of the STEM-skilled workers that are critical to the U.S. business sector’s growth are actually foreign-born talent.

Bloomberg Quint, for example, points out that Indian nationals are extremely in-demand in these U.S. companies, especially those based in the San Francisco Bay Area and working in tech fields like IT and telecommunications. But they’re not enough.

It has been reported that about 70 percent of the H-1B Immigrant visas go to web developers, software programmers, and other tech-proficient professionals hailing from cities like New Delhi and Hyderabad.

While the report of Immigration Impact does not highlight any specific country or ethnicity, it does show how reliant the U.S. economy — and employers – are on foreign-born workers who have strong core competencies in STEM.

It gives the following breakdown:  as of 2015, about 25 percent of all math and IT professionals in the country were born in another country; so were 39 percent of all software developers working in the U.S. About 25 percent of nuclear engineers and electrical engineers were also immigrants.

About 40 percent of scientists who dabble in physics, geology, and other hard-core scientific disciplines are foreign-born.

Finally, half of the medical professionals who are mandated to take care of the American aging population as well as their families were born and raised on foreign shores before making their way to the U.S.

Immigration and the hiring of foreign talent do not just respond to the need of U.S. companies — they actually fill a gap for STEM-related workers. This situation cannot be solved by simply relying on homegrown or native-born Americans.

As reported by The New American Economy, as of 2016, there were 3 million job vacancies in STEM across the country.

A year earlier, for every job posting from any business sector, there were 17 job postings for STEM-related work.

About 14 states in the U.S., including Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, and Virginia, had more STEM-related job postings than they did unemployed workers in these areas, at a staggering ratio of 17 to 1.

STEM-skilled workers do not have to fear unemployment either, says the New American Economy. As of two years ago, that number is at a very low 2.7 percent.

All this means for the global mobility manager is that hiring for STEM-skilled workers will be non-stop.

Current obstacles may have slowed it down but the demand will continue, if not rise once these hurdles have been overcome. American business just may depend on it.