Li Auto ‘adjusts’ graduates’ contracts amid mass layoff

Promised positions are disappearing at Li Auto, only to be replaced by different jobs, or no job at all. With the recruitment peak just ended, many graduates will find themselves without any prospect of a suitable alternative.

Photo from CFP

Photo from CFP

By ZHOU Shuqi, WANG Yuezhu


EV maker Li Auto has some news for some top students about to graduate – sorry, we changed our mind. Promised jobs are disappearing, only to be replaced by different jobs, or in many cases, no job at all.

One unfortunate told Jiemian News that he received an email Wednesday morning, informing him of his transfer to another department for further interviews. Some fresh graduates have been asked to transfer, while employees have been laid off. Disappointment is rife in internal systems, products, intelligent driving, and data development departments. Most of the canned employees are technical staff.

Nowhere else to go

The recruitment peak just ended, and social media users feel they have been stranded high and dry, without any prospect of finding a suitable alternative.

“I signed a tripartite agreement with Li Auto and my school, and now I have been told the contract no longer exists. Where can I find another job at this time?” said a downcast netizen. He revealed that he was in the intelligent driving department and the entire team had been laid off.

Li Auto told Jiemian News that adjustments were being made and some posts involving potential graduates who had not yet joined the company were no longer available. Major changes have hit the camera research and internal systems departments.

The company provides options for transfers. Compensation for those who can no longer be accommodated will amount to one month’s salary, exceeding “the contractual penalty amount in the agreement.”

A low-cost solution

According to WANG Zhiyan, a lawyer at the Shanghai branch of Beijing Lanpeng Law Firm, for those who have not signed tripartite agreements but have confirmed job offers, the company may be liable for contractual negligence and compensation of one to six months’ salary. It is a comparatively low-cost solution.

In early April, Li Auto’s layoff plan came to light, involving the product and internal systems departments, who are expected to lose about 15 percent of their staff. In June, all employees’ hours worked will be sorted from high to low, and those at the bottom of the heap will be shown the door.

Li Auto’s revenue totaled 9.6 billion yuan (US$1.4 billion) in Q1, a net loss of 10.9 million yuan. The Li Auto ONE delivered 32,00 units, down 10 percent quarter-on-quarter.