Virginia Beach Career Guide & Overview of Fastest Growing Jobs

May 25, 2018

Virginia Beach, VA, is not known only as a vacation destination. In 2015 and 2016, Wallet Hub named Virginia Beach as the 2nd hardest-working city in America. Read on to find out more about Virginia Beach, its largest employers and the area's fastest-growing jobs.

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Economic Overview of Virginia Beach

According to, the Guinness Book of Records lists Virginia Beach as having the longest pleasure beach on the planet, at 35 miles. It is also the largest city in Virginia and is among the top 40 largest cities in the U.S. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) notes that the Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) had a civilian labor force of almost 850,000 and an unemployment rate of just 3.6% in March 2018. Unemployment has fallen steadily since January 2018. In May 2017, the BLS reported that the average hourly wage for those working in the Virginia Beach area was $22.79.

Largest Employers

According to Virginia Beach Economic Development, the following were the top 10 private employers in the Virginia Beach/Norfolk area in 2016. It should be noted that the list does not include public or retail employers. Topping the list are two military bases and a hospital system, each of which employs at least 3,600 civilians.

  • Naval Air Station Oceana-Dam Neck
  • Sentara Health Care
  • Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek/Ft. Story
  • GEICO General Insurance Company
  • General Growth Properties (Lynnhaven Mall)
  • Gold Key/PHR Hotels & Resorts
  • STIHL Incorporated
  • Amerigroup (Anthem)
  • Navy Exchange Service Command
  • Engility Corp.

Fastest-Growing Occupations

If you're seeking a job in healthcare and live or will live in Virginia Beach, you're in luck: healthcare occupations make up nearly the entire top 10 fastest-growing occupations in this region. According to Virginia's Labor Market Information, the following are projected to grow fastest in the Hampton Roads area, which includes Virginia Beach, over the 2014-2024 decade:

  • Occupational Therapy Assistants
  • Home Health Aides
  • Physical Therapist Assistants
  • Physical Therapist Aides
  • Nurse Practitioners
  • Phlebotomists
  • Physician Assistants
  • Commercial Divers
  • Nurse Anethetists
  • Personal Financial Advisors
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