If you're looking for current trends on the Orlando job market, you need only glance at recent headlines – like these from the Orlando Sentinel – to get a gist of what's going on.
Signs for new and renovated office parks, shopping centers and multifamily housing complexes are everywhere. Older neighborhoods are rising from the ashes, with apartments ideal for everyone from new college grads to entire relocating families. And entirely new communities have been created, with space for employers to build and spread out.
Lake Nona, which recently welcomed educational arms of the University of Central Florida (a medical school!), the University of Florida, Nemours Children's Hospital and the headquarters for the American Tennis Association – to name a few – is just one example.
The following roster highlights Central Florida's five largest employers in 2018, according to the Orlando Business Journal. Central Florida includes Lake, Orange, Osceola and Seminole Counties. And not only are these entities growing, more are coming. Orlando is one job market you'll want to keep your eye on.
Local employees: 74,000+
Orlando is the world's No. 1 tourist destination, so you had a feeling the Mouse would top the list. Yes, Disney is nothing less than an empire with entire new attractions and resorts already under construction for 2019 openings.
We're not sure even Walt knew it could get this big, but the Burbank, CA-headquartered kingdom is nothing less than magic and certainly shows no signs of slowing down. Its company-wide revenue last year was $55 billion – five times that of its closest list mate.
Local employees: 29,000
This faith-based healthcare organization, established in 1973, has 48 facilities in 10 states and calls the Seminole County city of Altamonte Springs – just minutes from downtown Orlando – its home base.
Company-wide, its 80,000 employees run the gamut in facilities from nursing homes to hospitals. It will be rebranding in 2019 as AdventHealth, “a unified system brand strategy that is the tangible representation of a consumer-focused, fully integrated health care delivery network," its President and CEO, Terry Shaw, told Home Health Care News.
AHS' company-wide revenue in 2017 was more than $10 billion.
Local employees: 25,000
A relative newcomer on this list and established in 1990, Universal Orlando Resort continues to be a force with which to be reckoned. Not only has its continuous hive-like construction been visible from I-4 for ages, the intellectual properties with which its associated will be bringing kids – and eventually their kids – to town for decades to come. Recent additions to its portfolio of entertainment and tourism entities include the Volcano Bay water park and the sleek new Aventura Hotel.
Show up any day of the week to watch this perpetual cycle of commerce in progress. Universal Parks & Resorts is headquartered here in town, as well.
Comcast – the parent company of Universal Orlando Resort – says its theme parks raked in a cool $5.4 billion in 2017.
Local employees: 24,000+
Orlando proper is located in Orange County and its public-school system was established way back in 1869. The Mouse wasn't on the area's radar back then, but commerce – more in the form of citrus and steer – certainly was and wealthy folks in the northeast and Midwest were already establishing cold-season homes in the area. In fact, several Central Florida towns have the word “winter" right in their names!
But even kids who don't grow up having snowball fights need schools and these days, with the area's home builders out in force creating new communities for incoming residents, that's truer than ever.
OCPS' revenue last year topped $2 billion.
Local employees: 9,500
Higher education is prevalent in the Sunshine State and this East Orlando-based giant is its biggest public state university. UCF has more than 66,000 students – surpassing those Gators up in Gainesville at the University of Florida by more than 10,000. And its reach is expanding.
The new medical school in Lake Nona is gorgeous and state-of-the-art, and while its football stadium may not be as famous as the Swamp, you'll see just many proud students, alums and parents heralding the Golden Knights on their license plates, if not more.
UCF was established in 1963 and it's 2017 revenue was more than $1 billion. That only stands to grow.