Saturday, January 7, 2017

The IT outsourcing mess keeps coming up

While the story of outsourcing IT jobs to India by UC-San Francisco has been circulating in the news media for some time, it keeps coming up - probably, because the outsourcing itself is ongoing. The LA Times picked up the story in a column by Michael Hiltzik.

How the University of California exploited a visa loophole to move tech jobs to India

Using a visa loophole to fire well-paid U.S. information technology works and replace them with low-paid immigrants from India is despicable enough when it’s done by profit-making companies such as Southern California Edison and Walt Disney Co.

But the latest employer to try this stunt sets a new mark in what might be termed “job laundering.” It’s the University of California. Experts in the abuse of so-called H-1B visas say UC is the first public university to send the jobs of American IT staff offshore. That’s not a distinction UC should wear proudly.

UC San Francisco, the system’s biggest medical center, announced in July that it would lay off 49 career IT staffers and eliminate 48 other IT jobs that were vacant or filled by contract employees. The workers are to be gone as of Feb. 28. In the meantime they’ve been ordered to train their own replacements, who are employees of the Indian outsourcing firm HCL Technologies.

The training process was described by UCSF managers by the Orwellian term “knowledge transfer,” according to Audrey Hatten-Milholin, 53, an IT architect with 17 years of experience at UCSF who will be laid off next month...

Full story at

Given the sensitivity of outsourcing with the incoming Trump administration, the vulnerability of UC - we have in earlier posts pointed to federal funds that support UC - can't just be an issue for one campus. Note that the column headline above names UC, not UC-SF, as the culprit. Note also that photo that accompanies the column is not of the chancellor of UC-SF but of the UC president.

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