Tesla has published its first ever Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Impact Report for its operations in the US. The report, released last Friday, covers gender representation and the representation of historically under-represented racial groups in its US workforce and leadership, but does not go into other demographics, or into indicators such as pay discrepancies or attrition rates.
According to the report's findings, 59 percent of Tesla's US leadership is white, followed by 33 percent Asians. Other races are extremely unlikely to make it to director level or above—4 percent of leadership is Black and 4 percent Hispanic. Given that Tesla has approximately 48,000 US employees, and 0.4 percent of these are leadership, that suggests that the company has perhaps a total of 16 Black and Hispanic people in leadership positions. The report also stated that this figure represents a 60 percent increase in management representation for these two groups.
The report also presented Tesla's workforce demographics, which are somewhat more distributed: 34 percent white, 21 percent Asian, 10 percent Black, and 22 percent Hispanic. According to the report, 68 percent of all new hires and 65 percent of promotions in the US this year were from under-represented—i.e. non-white—communities.
For comparison, the racial breakdown of the US is approximately 60 percent white, 6 percent Asian, 13 percent Black, and 19 percent Hispanic.
Characteristically of the tech industry, both the workforce and the leadership skew heavily male, at 79 percent of the workforce and 83 percent of leadership. The report states: “While women are historically underrepresented in the tech and automotive industries, we recognize we have work to do in this area...Increasing women’s representation at all levels, especially in leadership, is a top priority in 2021.”
Tesla has stated that it is actively recruiting from “spaces that offer access to talent from underrepresented communities”, including historically Black colleges and universities, and engaging with groups that specifically gather talent from these communities.