The piece just goes to show that the land of dreams, the US of A and the much glorified foreign career has been a rude shock for some.
Here is the other side to the story:
Salary given by the US-based Indian IT companies are traditionally very low as compared to what a US company. How much? Consider this: An IT professionals working in the US for 3 years can get $65000 per year in bay area.
Indian IT firms pay something to the tune of $45000 (that too is inflated figure), so the difference is something like 44.44%. Add this to usual period of H1 visa of 2 years, so the difference is $40,000. In Indian currency at today’s rate ($1 = Rs. 46.28), it is whopping Rs 18,51,200.
When an Indian IT professional comes to the US, he starts a new life. There is a cost attached to it. In most of the US cities, he needs to buy a car. He does not have a credit history, so he cannot borrow from banks or financial institutions.
So, he needs to save tooth and nail to buy even an old used car. This costs 3,000 to 4,000 dollars. He needs to buy kitchen equipments and furniture. The costs for even second hand stuff are about $500. (No, he just cannot think of first hand/new stuff.)
Then comes the saving part, which is necessary as he has to visit India. Plane ticket costs $1000 to $1500, depending on where he is. If a bachelor, he shares apartment, else he needs to pay all by himself for the apartment.
On an average he needs to spend at least $2000 to 2200 to live middle-class life. And the $45000 after tax (at least 30%) leaves him with $2,625 per month.
So he saves a meagre sum of $425. And this is after staying in the US for a year and managing expenses with loans.
Then, compare this with what he saves if he works for US firm. His expenses are more or less the same, even if he works for a US company. Even if he becomes more lavish, he can spend $2500 per month. And the $65000 after tax (at least 30%) leaves him with $3791 per month. Still saving of $1291, equivalent to 3 months of saving, if he works for an Indian company.
That's just plain salary calculation. Add to this, the fact that the Indian companies never pay overtime, but still make you work beyond office hours.
They make you sign bonds or contracts for not leaving for certain period. If you leave, many times you end up not getting an experience letter. Your assignment period is always in the hands of some manager, who can send you back to India if he does not like you.
And hey, was there a law which stated that the employees on H1 visa need to be paid equal salary as the Americans? Oh yes, but the smart Indian firms have easily gotten around it long time back.
And why does Indian IT professional go to the United States, leaving behind all his friends, family and loved ones? For extra money in savings, for better life style. Is there a single good reason, why he should stick to an Indian IT firm, for 2-3 years at prime time of his career?
If the Indian IT companies are losing people, that's totally their fault of underpaying their employees. Pay at par, and see what happens. It is the Indian IT firms' cheap policies, which make most decent of the employees look for other jobs.
The above is an excerpt from an article appearing in Economic Times authored by Chanakya
(The author is trying to make both ends meet, on the salary of an Indian IT Co.)