Diversity of economic activity continues to be an underlying strength in Palm Bay’s economy.
As is true nationally, small business is an important driver in Palm Bay’s business community. 80% of Palm Bay businesses are 9 or less employees. However, 20% of Palm Bay employers are medium to large, adding diversity in size to diversity in economic activity.
Palm Bay’s three largest employment sectors are Trade, Transportation and Utilities; Professional and Business Services and Construction all of which comprise 57% of the jobs in Palm Bay.
From global high-tech companies to mom-and-pop small businesses, Brevard County’s public and private employers are greatly diversified, offering residents career opportunities in a wide-range of industry sectors. Certain organizations, however, are responsible for the employment of a large number of local residents.
With 8,500 employees, the Brevard County School Board, consisting of the school system’s employees and the school board, represents the largest employer in Brevard County. Higher educational institutions, including Eastern Florida State College and Florida Institute of Technology, also heavily contribute significantly to the area’s employment.
The area’s three major hospital/health service companies including Health First, Health Management Associates (doing business locally as Wuesthoff Health System) and Parrish Medical Center, represent the biggest employers in the area’s dynamic health care field.
The aerospace industry is among the key components of the local economy, both within the space program and elsewhere. Although NASA has retired the Space Shuttle program, there is a busy schedule of unmanned Atlas and Delta rocket launches scheduled for Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, coordinated by the 45th Space Wing at Patrick Air Force Base.
NASA and its contractors are dominant players in the northern part of the county. Some of the key contractors in the local space industry are URS Corporation, Lockheed Martin Space Systems, and United Launch Alliance.
Other major local employers in the aerospace industry include Rockwell Collins Inc. and Northrop Grumman Corp.
Beyond the space program, other high-tech businesses are crucial to the local economy. One of Brevard County’s largest corporate employers is Harris Corp., which is involved in a range of government, military and commercial endeavors. Harris Corporation, is one of Palm Bay’s most significant employers, opened its new, multi-million dollar buildings in Palm Bay in 2105. Additionally, as part of their merger with Excelis, Harris has chosen Palm Bay as the location for their electronics and space intelligence systems programs. Harris also made the important decision to keep their headquarters located right here in Brevard County.
DRS Technologies and its various local divisions also have a major presence in Brevard County, along with Intersil, Symetrics Industries and Craig Technologies.
Governmental employment also represents a large workforce sector, with many residents employed by county and city governmental agencies.
For more information on businesses in Brevard County, visit SpaceCoastBusiness.com