Was the stress of the most recent H-1B season too much to handle? If you came into work early, stayed late, felt like you had too much on your plate – or worse – if you didn't get some of your applications in on April 1, you need to better prepare to manage your stress next year.
"Case management software is the biggest favor you can do for yourself."
Follow these tips to look forward to a more manageable H-1B season:
- Start as early as possible. The end of any year is a great time to get organized and connect with your clients and potential hires. December may be too early to know who will need an H-1B application, but it's not too soon to start figuring it out. By the end of the January, you should have your H-1B application needs solidified.
- Touch base with other stakeholders. You may be responsible for completing H-1B applications, but others in the company may know eligible candidates or have other information. Check in with human resources, recruiters and employees to ensure you know whose applications to move forward with.
- Invest in necessary technology. Manually tracking numerous H-1B applications is tedious and stress-inducing. Investing in immigration case management software is the biggest favor you can do for yourself, as it allows you to set up new case files, easily gather client information, establish the most efficient workflow and track deadlines.
- Set a clear schedule for your clients. Initial hold up can come from your clients not providing the documents you need right away. Use your CMS to set due dates and send reminders to your clients.
- Prepare for delays. Start early and expect something to hold you back. If you submit your Labor Condition Applications and other pre-H-1B forms as early as possible, your entire schedule isn't delayed if something unexpected comes up.
- Take stock of your work at the end of each day. Starting in January, you should check in with your H-1B applications regularly. It's best to spare 10 minutes at the end of each day to check your calendar, see what you're waiting on and what you need get going on the next day.
- Leave work behind. It can be tempting to check your work email during the evening or bring files home, but it's best to give yourself a work-free zone. It's easiest to do this after work each day. Make yourself a nice dinner, catch up on your favorite show and get a good night's sleep.