Tesla Motors is planning to give employees an average wage of $25 per hour at its massive battery factory in Nevada, according to the head of the Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada. The battery plant dubbed the gigafactory is still being built in the desert east of Reno and is expected to employ almost 6,500 workers by 2023.
More than any other automaker
Mike Kazmierski, CEO in Developing Authority of Western Nevada, claimed that Tesla’s increasing wage range is having a proportional effect on the pay scale of other companies in the region. In the Sunday edition of the Reno Gazette-Journal, Kazmierski claimed that the minimum hourly wage now is in the range of $12-$15, compared to around $10-$12 in 2012.
Such a pay scale by the EV maker exceeds the amount of wages disbursed to newbies by virtually all U.S. automakers and is almost twice the money paid by part-supplying companies. Moreover, it is above the minimum hourly wage of $17 paid to Tesla workers for manufacturing Model S in the facility at Fremont, Calif., says a report from the Detroit Free Press.
As reported by a Reno newspaper in October last year, about 4,250 Tesla employees will initially get around $22.79 an hour, and another 820 technicians, meant for managing equipment and quality purposes, will be provided with an hourly wage of $27.88. The engineers and senior staff at the Nevada factory are expected to get $41.83 per hour.
Why Tesla is paying so much?
The reason for Tesla Motors’ hiking its pay scale is that the company wants “to attract the best and the brightest” for its Nevada factory, as the battery is going to be crucial in making the EV manufacturer a mass market producer, as suggested by Harley Shaikin, a professor and labor economist at University of California.
Further, Shaikin said Tesla Motors might have decided to raise hourly wages to discourage any union’s attempt to influence its workers. However, whatever the intent might be behind Tesla’s efforts, the wages put forward by the company might not have any effect on the UAW’s contract with the Detroit Big Three automakers, says the Detroit Free Press, citing labor experts.