How to Get
a Job at Tesla
Hiring Process, Careers, and Job Search FAQs
As a producer of electric vehicles and other unique technologies, this multi-billion-dollar tech company is at the forefront of modern innovation. Tesla is one of the most alluring companies one could work for, but the competition for career opportunities is fierce. In 2018, the company received almost 500,000 applicants while only having about 2,500 open positions.
If you are one of the many college students and job seekers interested in getting a job at Tesla, then you have come to the right place. Whether you are aiming for opportunities in software engineering or another tech area, this guide will walk you through the Tesla hiring process. However, before you start preparing for the application process and interview stage, it’s essential to get to know all you can about this iconic company.
About Tesla: Company Profile
Tesla, Inc. is an American sustainable energy and electric automobile company based in Palo Alto, California. Silicon Valley engineers Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning co-founded the company in 2003 and named it Tesla Motors after the renowned inventor Nikola Tesla. In 2004, Elon Musk joined the company and served as chair of its Board of Directors.
Musk then took over as CEO in 2008 after Eberhard and Tarpenning left Tesla Motors entirely. The transition was not without any controversy, and it was revealed that Musk later fired 25 percent of the employees. Since then, the company has expanded its ambitions beyond electric cars and shifted its focus to innovation, staying true to the vision of Nikola Tesla. It introduced a new line of solar panels and batteries to power homes and businesses.
What's It Like Working for Tesla?
Working at an electric automobile and engineering company as innovative as Tesla means you will be at the forefront of the motor industry’s future. You will be working on some of today’s most creative and unique products.
Getting a job at this iconic tech company will also provide you with plenty of opportunities to grow your career. But like all other organizations, you can also expect a few bumps like long working hours, demanding performance and output expectations, and tricky workplace politics.
Life at Tesla: Tesla Company Culture
As an innovative company with a mission to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy, Tesla has a unique approach to business. Tesla is guided by a set of values that encourages its employees to work in a fast-paced environment, achieve the impossible, and constantly innovate.
The work atmosphere also encourages employees to seek out perfect solutions, pioneer, and work as part of a group. Before learning how to get a job at Tesla, consider whether its core values resonate with your own beliefs.
What Do Employees Say About Tesla?
On Tesla’s Glassdoor page, almost every anonymous employee review shows both the company’s positive and negative sides. Some of them commend the company’s fast-paced environment and training program, which provide an excellent avenue for learning. Reviews also highlight how passionate everyone is about the company’s products and the sense of fulfillment that most employees feel.
However, this also translated to long hours, including working on weekends to finish a project. The work-life balance of a Tesla employee is mediocre at best. Furthermore, there’s a certain amount of micromanagement and politics in the workplace environment. Employees also fear being dismissed for no reason since the company seems to do this frequently.
Applying for a Job at Tesla: Overview
Check for Tesla vacancies through its careers page, official LinkedIn page, or third-party employment websites like Glassdoor and Indeed.
Read the job description thoroughly and check if you meet the requirements for the role.
Prepare your resume and write a compelling cover letter.
Submit your resume and online application.
Wait for the hiring manager to call you for the phone interview.
If you pass, a representative will call you for an in-person interview.
Prepare for the Hogan Personality Inventory assessment, which includes a set of questions aimed at showing the type of employee you are going to be.
Get ready to be invited to an assessment center and take part in various tests to show your abilities.
Depending on the position, there may be a final interview with the hiring manager or even Elon Musk himself. Regardless, all Tesla hires must receive approval from the company’s CEO.
Tesla Hiring Process
Given how unique the company is, it’s not surprising that the Tesla hiring process doesn’t follow the norm. Every year, the company receives legions of brilliant applicants dreaming of joining its team.
The good thing about Tesla is that it accepts innovative and diverse thinkers regardless of their background. However, that means Tesla has to be creative when selecting prospective employees and conduct an intense interview process.
Tesla Job Application
Regardless of the position you’re after, the first place you should visit when looking for a job at Tesla is its careers page. You can browse through the list of available jobs or search by role or keyword.
Once you find the position you want, you’ll need to sign in to your Tesla Candidate Profile or use the Quick Apply option. You will be prompted to provide your contact information and your resume.
Tesla Interview Process
When researching how to acquire a job at Tesla, you should also look into how the company conducts interviews. Candidates often hear back from Tesla within a week after submitting their application. If your resume impresses the recruitment team, the hiring manager will call you for a phone interview. They will ask you for some extra information and schedule the first of your in-person interviews.
Tesla’s hiring procedure is meticulous, so you may be called for multiple rounds of interviews. After passing those rounds, you will complete written tests that assess your aptitude, reasoning, and technical skills. There may be a final interview in which you will have to impress the hiring manager, group of managers, or even Elon Musk himself.
Tesla Salaries, Employment Benefits, and Perks
Aside from the exciting experience of working on some of the world’s most advanced products, Tesla employees also enjoy great benefits and pay. Working at this ambitious company may not be easy, but Tesla is committed to compensating employees for their hard work and helping them reach their full potential.
How Much Do YouTube Employees Make?
According to PayScale, the average salary for a Tesla employee is $98,000 a year. Tesla workers earn anywhere from $64,254 to $142,657 per year. Unfortunately, data from the same source reveals a gender pay gap, with women based in the US earning $4,000 to $7,000 less than their male counterparts every year.
Meanwhile, a report from the UK government shows a “reverse gender gap” in this country. Women that work for Tesla in the UK earn £1.07 for every £1 that men receive when comparing hourly wages.
Tesla Employment Benefits and Perks
If you manage to pass the strict hiring process and are offered a position at Tesla, you can look forward to a host of benefits during your employment at this company. Tesla provides employees with 401(k) plans as well as medical, dental, and vision insurance coverage. If you’re thinking of furthering your education and enriching your professional resume, Tesla also has programs for tuition reimbursement.
As a Tesla employee, you’ll also enjoy paid leave and retirement benefits. Like other tech giants, the company takes its employee perks and benefits to a new level by offering a discount on Tesla shares. Tesla is also dedicated to embracing diversity and accommodating individuals with disabilities and provides short and long-term disability packages.
Tech Jobs at Tesla: Requirements and Job Description
Although Tesla is an automobile company dedicated to manufacturing electric cars and other sustainable products, you’ll find all kinds of jobs aside from electric and mechanical engineer positions. It also provides several IT and software-related roles for tech professionals.
Full Stack Engineer, Vehicle Programs Integration and Tools
Minimum Education Qualifications: Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, Computer Engineering, or an equivalent degree with some courses in electronics or electrical engineering
Skills Requirements: Machine learning, data analytics, stream processing systems, web frameworks, and Airflow work management platform
Experience Qualifications: 2 to 3 years of experience in Python development
Location: Palo Alto, California
As a full stack engineer for vehicle programs integration and tools at Tesla, you will be part of the team that’s at the forefront of new vehicle development. You’re responsible for creating, maintaining, and expanding the design of Tesla’s internal engineering tools. You will also collaborate with various teams to implement architectural improvements.
Thermal Systems Engineer - Industrial Storage
Minimum Education Qualifications: Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical, Thermal, Aerospace, Computer, or Electrical Engineering
Skills Requirements: Python, cross-functional collaborative skills, and oral and written communication skills
Experience Qualifications: 2 years experience in product development, reliability engineering, failure analysis, systems test engineering, product quality, or service engineering
Location: Palo Alto, California
The thermal systems engineer will join the Tesla Energy Product and Service Engineering team to support the company’s Industrial Storage fleet. In this role, you will lead a team of engineers to identify and troubleshoot problems with regard to design, process, firmware, and software. You must be prepared to travel to customer sites and to the company’s manufacturing and engineering facilities across the US.
Staff Firmware Engineer - Tesla Energy
Minimum Education Qualifications: Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering, Computer Science, Physics, or related field
Skills Requirements: C, C++, and communication skills
Experience Qualifications: Experience in shipping code, receiving customer feedback, and other practical work engineering experience
Location: San Diego, California
In this job position, you will join a team of expert engineers to solve ambitious and challenging problems in Tesla’s energy and cell manufacturing space. As the senior firmware engineer, you will lead a team to develop innovative systems and execute any level of firmware design. You must develop, enhance, and debug real-time firmware in C and C++.
Technical Architect - 3DExperience
Minimum Education Qualifications: Bachelor’s Degree in Information Technology, Computer Science, Software Engineering, or related field
Skills Requirements: 3DX customization approaches, communication skills, and organizational and leadership skills
Experience Qualifications: 5 years of experience in engineering and PLM architecture design with Dassault Systèmes 3DExperience Platform and its products
Location: Palo Alto, California
As a technical architect for 3DExperience at Tesla, you will provide technical and architectural direction for the Product Life Management system and technical staff. Your responsibilities will include working with project management to assess technical constraints. You will also develop detailed technical specifications for solutions to business challenges.
IT Software Administrator
Minimum Education Qualifications: Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science with a focus in computer system engineering or equivalent combination of training and experience
Experience Qualifications: 2 years of experience in developing applications and automation platforms
Location: Austin, Texas
As an IT software administrator at Tesla, you will be responsible for improving the efficiency of its IT support team. You will identify opportunities and problems, create workflow automation, and build tools to improve work. Your focus will be on delivering reliable solutions to address more significant challenges and issues.
DevOps Engineer - Manufacturing Quality
Minimum Education Qualifications: Master’s Degree in Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Industrial Engineering, or related field
Skills Requirements: Docker, Kubernetes, Jenkins, Python, and Airflow
Experience Qualifications: 3 years of work experience in data engineering and platform engineering
Location: Fremont, California
As a DevOps engineer, you will be joining Tesla’s manufacturing quality data engineering team. Your job will involve building data pipelines and infrastructure that power tools, systems, and applications. You will also be responsible for creating and maintaining databases, including SQL and NoSQL.
Security Engineer - Fleetnet
Minimum Education Qualifications: Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering, or a related field
Skills Requirements: Cloud security, web application development, infrastructure or code auditing, and networking concepts
Experience Qualifications: 2 years of experience in security engineering or backed systems with a security focus
Location: Palo Alto, California
In this position, candidates are required to specialize in web services and distributed systems. You will be joining a small team of experts to build an IoT platform that connects customers to their cars. You’ll be responsible for conducting security assessments, architecture reviews, and threat modeling to improve the applications.
Software Engineer, C++ Simulation Software - Battery Management Systems
Minimum Education Qualifications: Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, or related field
Skills Requirements: C, C++, Python, software design, and architecture skills
Experience Qualifications: 5 years of experience as a software engineer and at least 2 years in software development
Location: Palo Alto, California
The role of a software engineer revolves around the delivery and quality of battery management and charging systems for Tesla’s electric cars. You will be responsible for designing and implementing tools, software, and methods to improve those systems. Your duties will also include understanding and deconstructing complicated software systems and formulating strategies to test them.
Software Quality Assurance Engineer
Minimum Education Qualifications: Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science or a related technical discipline
Experience Qualifications: 4 years of related practical experience
Location: Fremont, California
The job of a quality assurance engineer involves working closely with other software engineers to understand the technical design of applications and ensure the testability of these products. You will also be responsible for building and implementing test strategies and ensuring these are followed. Your main focus will be to help the company improve overall quality.
Technical Support Specialist II
Minimum Education Qualifications: Bachelor’s Degree in Electrical Engineering, Computer Science, Physics, or other technical or science field
Skills Requirements: Python, SQL, and written and verbal communication skills
Experience Qualifications: Experience working in a customer service environment and troubleshooting metering and communications issues
As a technical support specialist for Tesla, you will provide support to the company’s energy products. You will be helping other teams by handling escalations or passing concerns to an expert from the appropriate department. You may also have to handle field service calls, request training content, and contact customers directly to diagnose and fix technical issues.
How Hard Is It to Get a Job at Tesla?
Many people dream of joining Tesla and working on futuristic projects that can change the way we live. But, is it hard to get a job at Tesla? Unfortunately, given the hundreds of thousands of applicants per year, competition is fierce. In 2018 alone, the odds of landing a job at Tesla was only 0.5 percent, with only 2,500 available positions.
The company takes time assessing every applicant, and it is meticulous with its interview process. If you want to stand out among the sea of candidates, you must submit a compelling resume and cover letter and impress your interviewers.
How to Get a Job at Tesla FAQ
As of this writing, survey responders at PayScale report that Tesla employees earn an average annual base salary of $98,000. Of course, this depends on your position and experience. However, the lower percentile earns around $64,000. Meanwhile, the highest-earning employees receive an average of $142,000 per year.
If you want to land a job at Tesla, you will need the right qualifications, experience, skills, and education level required for the position. You must also have a compelling resume and cover letter to catch the attention of the recruitment team.
Like other tech giants engaged in a highly competitive business, working at Tesla is not a walk in the park. You can expect long hours of work and even weekend schedules to meet the required targets. Depending on your position and the department you join, the work can be highly demanding and stressful.
The entire hiring process typically takes around two weeks to three months, which may seem slow, but it is justified since the company receives a slew of applications every year.