A new report from Hired, a jobs marketplace for tech workers, has found that US President Donald Trump’s administration has created an environment of uncertainty and discomfort for tech workers in the US. The consequence? Tech workers are looking to settle in other countries, including Canada.
The report, titled Global Tech Hiring in the Trump Era, is based on a survey of 362 tech workers in the US including product managers, software engineers, data scientists, and designers.
The findings are also drawn from a sample set of over 175,000 interview requests and job offers from the past year, facilitated through Hired’s marketplace of nearly 10,000 companies and 1.5 million job seekers.
Specifically, Hired looked at the interactions between US-based companies and foreign candidates on its platform.
When it comes to how tech workers are responding to the current administration’s executive orders like the Muslim ban and a proposed reform to the H-1B visa program, Hired found that 40 percent of survey respondents have considered relocating to another country.
The report indicated that nearly one-third (32 percent) of survey respondents said that Canada is their top choice to relocate to, followed by Germany (12 percent), Asia (10 percent), and Australia (10 percent).
Hired suggested that US tech workers are considering relocating to countries like Canada and Germany because of recent shifts in immigration and employment policies.
Earlier this year, US President Donald Trump signed an executive order to suspend immigration to the US from six Muslim-majority countries – a move heavily protested by global tech communities. Soon after, another executive order known as “Hire American, Buy American” proposed a broad reform to the H-1B visa program, which allows employers to hire highly skilled foreign workers in specialized occupations.
Lindsey Scott, who leads Hired’s communications team, said these issues could have a negative impact on innovation in the US and may lead to loss of tech talent.
“Over the long term, these issues could very well have a negative impact on the US’ ability to stay competitive in the global tech economy.”
“Over the long term, these issues could very well have a negative impact on the US’ ability to stay competitive in the global tech economy,” wrote Scott. “This is especially true given efforts by countries like France and Canada to lure tech talent and companies to their soil through more relaxed immigration policies, special visas for entrepreneurs and tech talent, and tax incentives for businesses.”
Canada’s tech industry has responded to immigration concerns in the US in a number of ways, including an open letter that called on the Canadian federal government to institute an immediate and targeted visa to provide those displaced by the US Muslim ban with temporary residency in Canada.
The Canadian government has also been working to attract foreign tech talent and relax its immigration policies through initiatives like the Startup Visa program, which allows entrepreneurs to become permanent residents in Canada if a Canadian venture capital fund or angel investor group makes a financial commitment in their business; and the fast-track visa, which promises a process time of 10 days to two weeks for highly-skilled talent.
View the full Hired report here.
Related: Immigration Q&A argues uncertain political times makes education the most valuable asset to secure talent