As part of the dialogue about job creation, we should not overlook the contribution of foreign companies which grow their businesses here in the U.S. - it's called localization and we need more of it.
Let's consider Japan. Twenty years ago, it was feared that Japanese auto makers would flood the U.S. with exports, and cause displacement of American auto manufacturing jobs in Japan. Today, almost 7 in 10 Japanese cars sold in the U.S. are produced in Japanese manufacturing plants in North America. What’s more, exported vehicles from Japanese plants in U.S. to other countries increased to more than 145,000, up from 94,000 in 2009.
Japanese auto makers such as Toyota (TM)  and Honda (HMC) have invested more than $34 billion in the U.S. alone through 2010, and now employ over 40,000 Americans in 29 manufacturing plants, 33 R&D and design centers and dealer and distributorships, according to the 2012 report of the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association.
The weakening dollar vs. yen has contributed to the growing employment of Americans by Japanese firms: in 1980, the USD bought almost 210 yen; in 1990 it bought over 133 yen; it now buys around 77 yen. While not the sole factor, the weakening dollar does make it more attractive some Japanese firms to pay for manufacturing plants and labor in dollars, which has contributed to more production in the U.S.
Another reason overseas companies are hiring Americans is to get closer to their customers and weave themselves into the economic and social fabric of a major market. An excellent example is Genpact  (G), a Bermuda-incorporated company, which was spun off from General Electric (GE)  in 2005. The company provides business process and technology management services to more than 600 companies around the world. It has doubled its U.S. workforce recently. It now has close to 3,000 employees in the U.S., its fastest growing market, and expects to continue to aggressively recruit for positions in business development, operations, analytics and reengineering, especially for its services delivery centers in Danville, Illinois; Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania; and Irvine California. At the core of Genpact’s effort to build U.S. talent is its leadership and professional skills training programs, with numerous courses and professional certifications. These employee development programs enable Genpact to provide higher-level services to its hundreds of U.S. based clients, and have won awards from such organizations like the American Society for Training & Development  (ASTD).
Genpact is committed not only to its direct clients, but to also being a good corporate citizen in the U.S., and its employees are involved in many charitable and community endeavors. Genpact’s President & CEO, N.V. “Tiger” Tyagarajan, sums up their global strategy: “as a global, client-focused services company that is traded on the New York Stock Exchange, Genpact at this stage of our evolution must be closer to our clients.”
Another example: Wipro  (WIT), a global IT leader that established its first U.S. headquarters in Mountain View, California in 1992, which has invested over $1 billion in the U.S., and now employs 9,000 in 95 cities throughout 24 states. While the vast majority of these employees are from India, Wipro is ramping up hiring in the U.S., and has become one of Atlanta’s largest job creators, with more than 500 employees, of which 80% are U.S. citizens. Wipro has a development center in Atlanta, Georgia, and established a working relationship with the local community. It recruits new graduates from local colleges and universities such as Georgia Tech, University of Georgia, Emory University and Georgia State. Last year, Wipro won an award from the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce for being a top source of job creation and an expected source of future growth. With a growing American staff, Wipro has expanded business opportunities as it can now better compete for contracts with U.S. customers in certain categories such as healthcare, government agencies, utility companies and defense contractors.
For many reasons – changing cost equation, client proximity, corporate citizenship, expanding markets, to mention some – foreign companies are setting up shop in the U.S. and making a positive impact on the U.S. economy. This is set to continue in the years to come and should benefit the U.S. economy.