Tesla is California’s only carmaker, a startup company in the fiercely competitive auto business. In California alone, we have created 14,000 jobs building electric vehicles with zero tailpipe emissions. This has prevented the release of 2.5 million tons of greenhouse gases from polluting our air.
We have invested more than $3 billion in our Fremont factory – a plant shut down by GM and Toyota in 2010. We’ve rehired many of those workers, paying them a starting salary that’s 70 percent above the state minimum wage.
Contrary to a recent commentary in The Bee (“Tesla treats its worker like dirt,” Viewpoints, Nov. 2), Tesla was named No. 6 on LinkedIn’s 2017 top companies to work for list.
Our compensation and benefits attract, retain and motivate a diverse group of talented individuals who share our mission. Tesla’s average starting hourly pay is higher than that at Ford, GM and Fiat-Chrysler. Our employees have many paths towards promotion and long-term careers. We also believe it is important for everyone to be an owner of the company, so unlike other automakers, everyone is awarded company stock upon hiring and can receive additional stock based on performance.
We are committed to making the Fremont factory the safest in the world and have designed our newest car – the mass market Model 3 – around the ergonomics of the people building it. Our ergonomic specialists constantly evaluate our assembly lines and adjust every process to eliminate or minimize health and safety risks.
Last month, after there had been some misinformation about us, several employees met with state lawmakers to discuss the company’s commitment to safety, and the real compensation and benefits that Tesla offers. One employee even said he made double what he’d made at any prior job. These employees were excited about their future – and there are thousands more just like them.
Gaby Toledano is chief people officer at Tesla. She can be contacted at GaToledano@tesla.com.