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How Many People Does Ford Employ?

Ford is one of the oldest and most famous American automakers. It’s always been an important part of the American manufacturing industry, and many models are assembled in America. Here’s a look at how many people work at Ford compared to the other major automakers.

Ford’s American workforce 

According to Auto Alliance, Ford employs over 175,000 people worldwide. While many of those people are working in one of the automaker’s 65 plants from around the world, the U.S. is still the country that’s home to the most employees. It makes sense too as Ford is an American company, so obviously, the company is employing a lot of Americans.

Auto News says that Ford has over 50,000 hourly employees in America alone. This means that Americans represent almost 30 percent of the total workforce of the company. However, that’s not the whole story. Auto News says that those are just the hourly employees. Due to how the economy works, Ford actually employs far more people indirectly.

For example, every part of a Ford truck will have to come from somewhere. From the aluminum that’s used to create the F-150’s body to the electronics that make up the interior of the truck, all of that has to be built by people – usually not people directly employed by the popular American automaker. That said, it’s very difficult to know just how many people are indirectly employed by Ford, but it’s likely a very high number.

How does this compare to the others?

An employee works on Ford Mondeo vehicles on the production line during assembly at Ford plant in Almussafes
A Ford employee at a manufacturing plant | David Ramos/Getty Images

Like Auto News reported, Ford is now the biggest automobile employer of Americans. GM was its main competition as GM used to employ significantly more people than Ford did. However, that’s no longer the case. Additionally, another member of the “Big Three,” Fiat-Chrysler, has trailed behind GM and Ford in terms of employing Americans.

Back in 2005, Auto News said that GM had 21,000 more American manufacturing employees than Ford did. However, after the Great Recession, Ford seems to have come out on top compared to the rest of the “Big Three.” Auto News says that Ford has about 50,700 American manufacturing employees while GM has 50,300. Fiat-Chrysler came in last with just 36,000 American manufacturing employees.

That said, the numbers are different if worldwide figures are taken into account. Fiat-Chrysler is the result of a merger between Fiat, one of Italy’s largest automakers, and Chrysler. As a result, Fiat-Chrysler has many employees worldwide. In fact, according to BizVibe, Fiat-Chrysler has over 235,000 worldwide employees, making it a larger employer than Ford and GM. 

But the “Big Three” of Detroit paled in comparison to Toyota – both in terms of employees and in revenue. Toyota has over 365,000 employees worldwide, according to BizVibe.

The “Big Three” vs. foreign automakers

Due to laws and taxes, it’s smarter for foreign carmakers like Toyota and BMW to use factories in the U.S. than it is to import their cars over. Because of that, most major foreign automakers will produce their cars in North America, and Toyota, in particular, has several plants in the U.S. 

According to Cars.com, the “Big Three” employs far more Americans than any other automaker in the U.S. does. However, Toyota is still a massive employer of Americans as about 30,000 Americans are employed by Toyota. This puts Toyota within range of Fiat-Chrysler’s number of American employees.

That said, that figure is still far below what Ford and GM employ. While Toyota, Honda, and other foreign manufacturers have made big strides in employing Americans, Ford and GM still dominate in terms of having the most American employees. And, with Ford’s continued success in the trucks and SUV market, its dominance may continue for a while.