Is Tesla a car company or a tech company? This answer matters a lot especially when we want to compare its salaries to that of similar businesses.
If we consider it a tech company, then its median salary is too low. However, it we categorize it as a car company, its median salary is right in the middle of the auto industry. It is neither too high nor too low even though garbage collectors earn a bit more.
In 2020, Tesla revealed it pays its middle-skilled workers $15 an hour or $47,147 a year. However, this is an overestimation since a $15 an hour salary will be equal to $31,200 a year (if we count using the 40-hour workweek and the 52 weeks in a year). This is lower than the salary of a refuse collector who earns $19.90 an hour or $41,400 a year.
Low wages have been a recurring issue at Tesla. In 2018, the median salary of a Tesla employee was $56,163 a year. This included basic salary, bonuses and stock. In comparison, Ford’s employees earned $64,316 while General Motors workers earned $77,849.
The reality of the Tesla’s low salaries becomes clearer when we compare it to other tech giants like Facebook and Alphabet. Facebook has a median salary of $228,651 while Alphabet has a median salary of $246,804. However, many Tesla employees say they do not mind the low wages. They work at Tesla because of the challenging environment and not the money.