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Tesla employees confess lingering layoff fears on anonymous chat app

Published Feb 12th, 2019 7:06PM EST
Tesla layoffs 2019

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After Tesla laid off some 9,000 workers last year and announced pink slips for another 7% of its workforce in January — which equates to laying off 3,000 more workers — it comes as no surprise that concerns about more layoffs remain pervasive inside the electric carmaker’s employee ranks.

That quickly became clear after the anonymous chat app Blind, where layoffs and related topics are always a popular subject for discussion, decided to launch an entire channel dedicated to this topic. Blind asked its community about layoff anxieties at the companies where they work, and in this survey that was open from February 2 through February 8, it quickly became clear that such worries were most acute at Tesla compared to tech companies where other respondents are employed.

In all, 8,230 users answered this survey, and Blind broke down the results by companies with at least 75 unique responses from employees. Among the findings:

Tesla had the highest percentage of employees worried about layoffs. Slightly more than 77% of Tesla employees confessed to anxiety about it. No surprise, especially when they see media reports like this piece from Business Insider last month which made the following point: “A company that’s likely to have sold something in the ballpark of 250,000 vehicles in 2018 and that runs a single factory in California can’t support 45,000 total employees.”

The company’s headcount is “bloated,” the author notes elsewhere in that piece, arguing that “it’s about time the company started cutting.”

Of course, layoffs are a fact of life everywhere in Corporate America, with some corners certainly feeling the effects more than others. The same is true within tech, with Tesla employees certainly not alone in this regard.

Anxiety about layoffs is almost as acute as it is at Tesla at other tech companies like eBay and Snapchat, which rounded out the top three in the Blind survey. A little more than 71% of respondents from eBay (71.88%) confessed to that anxiety, while 71.25% at Snapchat answered the same.

Social media giants comprise most of the bottom of this list, with employees at Facebook, Google and LinkedIn reporting the least concern about the possibility of layoffs. Google had the lower percentage of all, with only 11% of employees worried about this.

At Facebook, the figure was 11.53%, while 15.17% of respondents from LinkedIn reported being worried.

Andy Meek Trending News Editor

Andy Meek is a reporter based in Memphis who has covered media, entertainment, and culture for over 20 years. His work has appeared in outlets including The Guardian, Forbes, and The Financial Times, and he’s written for BGR since 2015. Andy's coverage includes technology and entertainment, and he has a particular interest in all things streaming.

Over the years, he’s interviewed legendary figures in entertainment and tech that range from Stan Lee to John McAfee, Peter Thiel, and Reed Hastings.