According to a new report from The Mercury News, Tesla has fired hundreds of employees from both its Palo Alto, California headquarters and its Fremont vehicle production factory. This is an usual move from a company that’s facing production setbacks and continues to struggle on the production line.
The report cites interviews with former and current employees, stating that the firings range from 400 to 700 people, and everyone from factory workers to managers to engineers have been let go. The Mercury News does state that the workers were not given any advance notice of the decision to be fired.
As expected, Tesla, in a statement came to its defense. Citing a company-wide annual review, it did not lay off employees, rather employees were let go based on poor job performance. “As with any company, especially one of over 33,000 employees, performance reviews also occasionally result in employee departures,” a company spokesman told The Mercury News. “Tesla is continuing to grow and hire new employees around the world.”
Tesla, however, did say that it plans to fill the “vast majority” of the positions with new hires. The company claims that most of the employees let go were from sales and administration, and had little effect on factory workforce in the Fremont factory. Even with these firings, Tesla is continuing to struggle and is behind in Model 3 production. Recently, CEO Elon Musk decided to delay the announcement of the new Tesla Semi truck in order to focus mass resources on delivering the Model 3, the company’s most affordable electric car, which starts at $35,000.