Employers believe our immigration system needs modernizing to spur economic growth and keep the United States in the international trade game, finds the Society of Human Resource Management.
“As the economy emerges from the pandemic, employers see workplace immigration as a solution to workforce challenges, a driver of economic growth and key to keeping the U.S. globally competitive,” says Emily Dickens, SHRM’s chief of staff and head of public affairs.
“Congress has an opportunity to modernize the system and contribute to the long-term success of our economy and our entire workforce.”.
SHRM admitted that the release of this research is intended to support encouraging Congress and the Biden Administration to take actions that will modernize the Immigration and Naturalization Act.
Key findings of the survey were that nearly three in four (73%) of responding employers agreed that increased immigration encourages economic growth and makes America more globally competitive.
A majority (54%) agreed the U.S. is losing out on top talent because of its immigration system. This is coupled with more than 78% of employers who disagreed that increased immigration would make it harder for Americans to find jobs.
While employers had overall positive experiences with their foreign-born workers, that contrasted with the low levels of positive experience with the system as a whole, SHRM says.
Top improvements suggested by the employers include enabling electronic filing throughout the system, introducing automatic renewals on a continuous basis, and providing more guidance from applicable government agencies.
They also would like to see created a “Known Employer” program that streamlines the process for employers that submit multiple applications, as well as increase the number of immigrant and non-immigrant visas available.