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Tesla hiring at lowest levels since 2016 as it eyes international expansion

As of February 17, 2019, job openings at Tesla Motors ($NASDAQ:TSLA) are at their lowest level since at least 2016. On that date, Tesla listed 1,336 openings on its careers website. For comparison, on May 10, 2018 the company was listing 3,214 openings, signaling a 58% drop in overall hiring.

Tesla has been somewhat unpredictable when it comes to virtually every facet of its business, from supply issues, to plateauing demand, to investor anxiety.  A drop in hiring activity isn't reason for concern on its own in most cases, especially for a company like Tesla that went through a period of rapid expansion. At one point, the company had to erect a manufacturing plant in a tent in order to meet demand.

It stands to reason, then, that a drop in hiring like this could simply mean that Tesla has the people it needs to transition into a period of maintenance and sustainability.

A look at the most-common jobs at the high- and low-points reveals a bit about where Tesla Motors is at in terms of personnel strategy.

Job Titles on May 10, 2018

Count

Job Titles on February 17, 2019

Count

Customer Experience Specialist

103

Product Specialist

16

Delivery Experience Specialist

49

Delivery Experience Specialist

10

Delivery Manager

46

Norway, Service Technician

9

Retail Energy Advisor

35

Sales Advisor

9

Licensed Electrician

33

Service Technician

8

Service Advisor

30

Fahrzeugaufbereiter / Service Assistant (m_w)

8

Field Energy Advisor

29

Mobile Service Technician (m_f)

6

Installer I

29

Technician / KFZ-Mechatroniker (m_w)

6

Energy Specialist

27

Vehicle Preparation Specialist

6

Service Technician

27

Product Specialist, Part Time

5

The largest shift is a drop in hiring for "Customer Experience Specialists", the retail employees of Tesla who work in showrooms. They're the company's salespeople, in short. Now that the company has its retail outlets where it wants them, it's likely that it's simply retaining extant employees who are already busy getting new customers into new Teslas.

This comparison also makes clear a focus on international markets for Tesla. Now that demand in the United States has equalized with supply, the company has set its focus on expansion territories.

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Joshua Fruhlinger

Joshua has been writing about technology, lifestyle, and business for over 20 years. He's one of the original writers and editors for Engadget, and still writes a...

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