Tesla releases diversity data for first time: How it stacks up against GM and Ford

There are very few women at the wheel of Tesla.

Detailed data about the demographics of Tesla’s workforce released for the first time this week show men vastly outnumber women at the upper levels of billionaire Elon Musk’s electric car manufacturer.

Men held 8 out of 10 executive jobs and nearly 7 out of 10 management jobs at Tesla in 2021, the most recent data available.

Those figures were comparable to other major car manufacturers, according to a USA TODAY analysis. At Ford, 74% of executives were men and at General Motors, 79%.

Women of color were the least represented at the top. Just under 10% of executives were women of color in 2021 even though they hold 15% of jobs in the U.S. and 16% of all other posts at Tesla, the data shows.

But that was better than at GM, where 3% of executives were women of color and at Ford, 5%. Tesla reported no Hispanic women or Latinas among its executives.

The disparities extended throughout Tesla’s workforce. Men held 77% of all other jobs at the company, including 77% of professional jobs.

Tesla could not be reached for comment Friday.

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Women today are more visible in corporate America, breaking into executive suites and boardrooms. But, despite efforts to shrink the gender gap, women are still far less likely than men to hold the top positions or bring home the top compensation.

Women make up just a quarter of the auto manufacturing workforce, according to Deloitte and Automotive News. Their report found that 82% of women believe bias toward men contributes to the lack of diversity in leadership. Nearly half of women surveyed would switch to a different industry if they were to restart their career, citing lack of diversity as one of the main reasons.

Tesla blocked release of its diversity data for years

Employers with 100 or more employees and federal contractors with 50 or more employees compile diversity data annually and submit it to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The reports, known as EEO-1s, break down the race and gender of a company’s workforce by job categories.

Companies like Tesla have battled to keep the contents of these reports from the public. Tesla is one of the few S&P 100 companies that had not provided their EEO-1 reports to USA TODAY.

Earlier this year the federal government released a historic data set detailing employee diversity at more than 19,000 of its contractors, but Tesla was not among them.

A Tesla Model S sedan is plugged into a Tesla Supercharger electrical vehicle charging station in Falls Church, Virginia on Feb. 13, 2023.

Tesla’s EEO-1 was filed Tuesday in Illinois, which now requires that private businesses with more than 100 employees produce the report.

The release of Tesla’s EEO-1 report comes after years of pressure from investors.

In 2021, a shareholder resolution calling on Tesla to release its EEO-1 report won the support of a majority of investors. Tesla, which opposed the measure, declined to make it public.

In stating its opposition, Tesla said it already produces a diversity report that outlines its programs and goals.

“Tesla and the board are proud of the strides made so far,” the company told shareholders at the time.

More companies from Apple and Google to Target and Walmart releasing diversity data

As investors press diversity resolutions, the nation’s largest companies have largely capitulated, making public the federal reports that they used to keep under wraps.

USA TODAY analysis of EEO-1 reports for companies in the S&P 100 found that, despite corporate pledges to change after George Floyd’s 2020 murder, racial and gender inequalities persist at every level of the nation’s largest and most powerful companies, creating sharply disparate outcomes for people of color, especially women of color.

(You can search for the Tesla EEO-1 here.)

Tesla has faced claims of tolerating racial slurs and other racist conduct and was sued by a California civil rights agency.

The company disclosed last year that it was under investigation by the EEOC in a matter that “closely parallels” the California case. It has denied wrongdoing.

In April, a jury reduced a $137 million award that a Black former contract worker won two years ago against Tesla for failing to protect him from racial abuse to $3.2 million. Owen Diaz asked for a retrial on damages after a judge said the amount – the most ever for an individual suing for discrimination – was too high.

After the 2021 trial, Tesla’s human resources chief said the company fired two contractors and suspended another in response to Diaz’s complaints.

Tesla has also been sued for sexual harassment at two of its manufacturing plants.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Tesla releases diversity data for the first time: Here’s what it shows