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Tesla Hiring Plans

I looked at the job listing that Tesla has posted on its website. There are a few hundred listings spread under various categories. I looked at the listings in Engineering, Production, Manufacturing. It looks like the company is planning a major ramp up in design, testing, add manufacturing, production, supply chain, etc. Descriptions included for engineers to do body designs, body in white, drive train, electronics, interior/exterior design, car seat design/production. Production folks for setting up CNC automated facilities, programming, etc. Big hiring in logistics, supply chain. Battery testing, packaging, electronics. Supercharger deployment engineers, field personnel, real estate types. Even lawyers. There are references to a second shift being added and the supply chain/logistics personnel needed.

Assuming these listings are current, they do give an insight on the course of action and future plans of the company. Certainly more than any analyst or Barron's. Anybody interested should read the individual job descriptions in detail to get find out what is going on. My impression is that Tesla is increasing production of Model S with another shift and possibly finalizing the design, tooling of Model X and getting ready for production. Looks like they are accelerating the testing of new batteries and pack design. Possibly for Model X that may need larger batteries?

My impression contrasts with the lowball guidance that Elon Musk gave: flat production, may be 21,000 Model S for this year; and Model X at the end of 2014. Any opinions?

Good detective work.

Wouldn't surprise me in the least if Tesla is shipping at the 100,000 cars a year rate at the end of 2015, ( Model S and model X ). And that's before the first model GenIII ships !

What I like about Tesla is that Elon doesn't chase growth this year, but instead focusses on efficiency. Efficiency gives you also some small growth now, but if he wants to grow beyond that next year he needs to hire now.

Teslutian;
100K S/X would require 2 lines running 2 shifts. And about double the demand Elon expects world-wide. Sounds possible -- but it would be a bit of a "surprise".

We've talked about this before, but Tesla needs time to train it's production personnel. It is not wise to speed up production if it means quality suffers as a result. Especially with a start up car company. Recalls will cripple Tesla. If that means maintaining one full line at 500/week for a year, then so be it and stick to that objective.

Overall, 2013 needs stay about hitting 25% margins and being profitable at 500/week. Have to set a standard first, then they will be able to scale effectively. No need to rush to failure. This company is a winner, don't need to f**k it up trying to meet demand right now.

Remember, the secret to business is not making money, but creating a new customer. People will always wait (and come back) to buy a great product.

I think the hiring is most likely part of the existing plan to prepare for 2014 MS and new production line for the MX. Seems fair to assume the MX line will be ready by late Q3/early Q4, given that a production MX is determined soon.

BrianH,

I can only speak for myself. I read Elon is now designing to improve manufacturing efficiency. I read Elon also engages the people on the line to help run this continuous improvement, efficiency process. And I see EM possibly as a Deming of the 21st century only improving on Deming's ideas for processes.

http://www.hci.com.au/hcisite2/articles/deming.htm

This schedule seems plausible while still maintaining quality.

End of 2013-----20k-30k MS cars per year run rate, one shift, one line
End of 2014-----50k-60k MS cars per year run rate, two shifts, two lines
End of 2015-----100k-MS/MXcars per year run rate, two shifts, two lines

The MX model should ramp faster, they are not starting from nothing with all new suppliers. Also they can start much sooner with two shifts on the MX instead of waiting a whole year to add the second shift.

So in other words, in my opinion, get your applications in now, the factory will be needing workers and a lot of people need work, and California needs you tax money.

Elon is managing for the long term. The personnel that he is hiring point to:
1. Improving the design of Model S to make manufacturing efficient. Probably adding robots and other equipment.
2. The supply job descriptions point to a second shift.
It remains to be seen when production would actually increase. I am skeptic about significant increase in demand at the current pricing, battery capacity. However, the supercharger network could be increasing demand. Not sure it would be enough to just the large expense of a second shift.

Model X or some new auto design is taking place along with the implementation of a manufacturing facility. All kinds of exterior body engineers, structural body engineers, electronics types, drive train engineers, and new manufacturing engineers and personnel are being added. I do not think this is for Model S that is a mature design.

Something big is going on, just based on the skill set being hired. We may not see the results soon. Elon likes to get everything lined up. I expect expenses to go up in the next few quarters.

Demand is a function of price, range and supercharger network. Tesla is moving fast on the supercharger network. Battery tech can be evolving to the point that they could have a 500 mile battery Model S priced at the price of current 85KW-hr model. The 85 KW-hr cars could be priced where the 60 KW-hr is currently priced. Then price the 60 KW-hr where the discontinued 40 KW-hr was priced. Tesla is certainly hiring battery specialists, including folks with testing and packaging skills.

I am going to dissect those job descriptions to have a better feel. Just takes time and effort.

I went through the job listings again. It looks that they are picking up speed. They are not just improving on Model S, but also setting up to increase production via a possible second shift, or getting ready for it. New vehicle development skills are being hired. New manufacturing facilities. Addition of production/manufacturing personnel. Looks like Elon is not standing still on the $750M pile of cash Tesla got after paying off the DOE debt.

I reserved a Model X Sig, but that was taking too long. So I am thinking of ordering a P85 for now. If I do that I will have to trade the S for the new X. Waste of money, since I like to keep cars for a few years. If they are going to produce the X sooner, I am not sure I want to order the X. Going to wait for the Jun-20 meeting.

@jk2014

Remember, the secret to business is not making money, but creating a new customer. People will always wait (and come back) to buy a great product.

I've never heard this put better. So many businesses, especially restaurants, fail because the investors are more interested in getting their investment out than growing the business.


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