Stopping a production line during a ramp up for days is a normal part of the business.
When the line is already running, it is not the best of all news, because something malfunctioned -- like a big press putting errors into some bigger parts -- and needs to be reworked. Sometimes, however, they are reworking the line. So these stops are planned and there usually also exists a very detailed plan how to approach this. This is usually a high-stress situation due to a standing production line causing a loss to the company, and a separate specifically for this trained team is doing the rework with the workers being concerned with the parts of the production line being the 'consultants' to this other team. Resp., helping operationally. During the setup of the production line for a new model it is standing for weeks. Hence, no one is having unpaid enforced vacation whatsoever. At least in Germany.
Smells like clickbait here.
BuzzFeed, which first reported the news, said
workers were expected to use vacation days or
stay home without pay during the four- to five-day
* It is normal that people have (paid!) vacation when there is stuff to be done where maintenance only works. It is called 'Werksurlaub' (roughly: 'factory vacation') and this you-have-to-take-vacation-period is announced in the beginning of the year and it has been like that since 30 years him working there.
* When they need to retool, if possible (most of the time) the new tool is put in line behind the to-be-replaced tool without stopping the production line and then they run-in the new tool with taking over cycles gradually.
* When there are 'incidents' or the production line has to be stopped, this is announced ahead of time and the production workers have to take a so-called 'Kollektivfreischicht' (roughly: 'collective non-working shift'), where the whole line works overtime prior to the incident and then take time in lieu collectively. There is also a funny German word for this 'taking time in lieu', it is called '[Überstunden] abfeiern' (lit: 'to party down [overtime]').
Also, he told me some not very nice things about the automotive industry. Especially when final assembly is standing still (unforeseen incident in production line) - that is, hundreds of people unable to work and costing money.
I interpret this, however, as general property of the (automotive) industry and you can read about it elsewhere.
It's apparently quite sudden and unpaid, very different from your father's situation.
This seems like a story that is being pushed just because sites know it will drive clicks but the actually news is well not really news.
> The announcement of the four- to five-day production pause for the Model 3 came without warning, according to Tesla employees who spoke with BuzzFeed News. During the pause, workers are expected to use vacation days or stay home without pay; a small number of workers may be offered paid work elsewhere in the factory.
Apple rumour sites always giddily report cancelled leave requests. I find it bizarre.
Most Americans are living paycheck to paycheck with less than $1000 cash in the accounts, and you think being forced to miss a week's pay with no notice isn't bad financially.
But you already knew that. There's no reason to falsey attribute malice to what someone says just to flamebait.
What the person you responded to has pointed out is that a lot of workers do not earn enough to have savings. So waving away loss of income in such situations as just spending some money you might have earned previously is not exactly nice.
I have family members working on the new Vogtle Nuclear Power plants in Georgia. Week to week they never know for sure whether they'll be working 7 days, 3 days, or 0 days. Managers do try to plan work stoppages ahead of time, but it's not always practical or possible and workers know this. Except for the most junior guys everybody understands you need to prepare for stoppages, though that doesn't prevent many from crying foul. Wage workers do have it tough, but it's also true that poor planning skills exacerbate the situation, and all the overtime means you can't really compare the situation to a part-time, minimum wage worker who couldn't save money even if they tried.
These tricks artificially boost its weekly production for the quarterly reports. After the cameras are off, the burned out workers and other resources need time to recuperate.
This shutdown period conveniently conceals this burnout. This is part of the shell games Tesla has played, robbing from its future self to manufacture the narrative it needs to maintain its share price in its stricken state.
If they "burst" 24/7 12 months a year then I'd just call it hauling ass.
But it is only really "robbing from its future self" if they don't end up sustaining them. My guess is that when production resumes, it will resume at a higher rate than the quarter end.
> During the pause, workers are expected to use vacation days or stay home without pay; a small number of workers may be offered paid work elsewhere in the factory.
For these downtimes that are planned by the company, is it typical across the industry that workers have to use vacation days or go without pay? Or is Tesla shortchanging workers relative to other car manufacturers?
Sometimes (when sales are slow and inventories are full) the shutdown lasts longer than two weeks.
I'm not exactly sure what happens for downtime more than a couple shifts, but I'm sure the union remembers it in the next negotiations.
Tesla's production engineering people probably need to rearrange the production line. By now, they should know where the trouble spots are.
I talked with a production employee about it when starting my current job. They said "man I could never work a salaried job. I'd get so frustrated with it".
There are pros and cons to the typical US salary structure.
* If the company gets too aggressive in the expectation of hours worked, people just leave since they're not getting overtime pay.
* I also have flexibility to start/end my day when I want within reason
* I never have to take time off for doctors visits
* I don't have a micro manager for a boss, so if I work 35 hours one week and 45 the next, nobody cares.
In the US, hourly employees get at least 1.5x pay for working beyond 40 hours. It's often cheaper to pay for overtime than expand the workforce, so some companies hand out OT like candy at a parade. An employee can double their pay by working 66 hours compared to just 40.
There are often also shift differentials. They might be a couple extra dollars/hour for nights and a couple extra for weekends.
Most salaried employees are "salary exempt" and are typically not paid overtime.
I don't see how any of that is relevant to whether one has salary or not?
I suppose it's not specific to salary, more to the type of work. In the US with production workers, a salary would be quite unusual. I have friends working at many companies and have never heard of the production employees being salaried.
> * I also have flexibility to start/end my day when I want within reason
Generally production employees work specific shifts with specified start and end times. Showing up 15 minutes late yields a verbal warning, 1 point on a discipline tree, etc. This can happen with salary positions as well, but I can't say I've ever seen it. It's more a "get your work done" attitude than anything.
> * I never have to take time off for doctors visits
I should have said "If I get sick, my paycheck isn't any smaller because I had to go to the doctor or take 3 days off."
If they’re losing money when they make cars, the logical choice should be to stop making cars. By doing so they should achieve profitability.
This is why Musk is an icon. He sees opportunities others don’t and is willing to defy convention.