Nashville Economy: Top Industries, Biggest Employers, & Business Opportunities
Nashville is known throughout the world as the place for music exploration. The city is famous for its many country and lesser-known jazz venues, among other forms of entertainment. It also has a great history of delicious food, including BBQ and southern cuisine. However, for many people, the southern US city is more than just a travel destination. More than 600,000 people call the city home.
Those thinking about moving to Nashville should consider the economic climate as well as the cost of living. Understanding more information about the largest employers and industries in the area can help decide if it is a good fit. Like many life decisions, the time to research the economy and layout is before deciding to move. Here are some things to consider about Nashville's economy.
Although Nashville is known for music and food to the outside world, it actually is home to many thriving industries. More than 70,000 jobs in the area are in hospitality work due to Nashville's status as a popular vacation city. In just 2019, the city saw more than 16 million visitors. Two of the city's largest tourist attractions are the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center and the Music City Center.
Number of People Employed By Nashville Top Industries
In addition to the tourist sites, the city has nearly a quarter of its business related to education and health services. Almost a third of the work done is in the trade, transportation, and utilities or professional and business services industries. The hospitality industry ranks fourth behind these three, meaning most of the city works outside the music scene's excitement. This diversity in Nashville's economy makes it an example of what any city should strive for.
Top Industries in Nashville
- Education and health services
- Trade, transportation, and utilities
- Professional and business services
- Leisure and hospitality
Top Employers in Nashville
Perhaps surprisingly, none of the largest employers in the area are related to the music or food scene. Instead, Vanderbilt University and Medical center is the largest employer with nearly 25,000 people employed. Vanderbilt was founded in 1873 and is one of the largest private educational institutions in the world. It has ten schools, all located on a beautiful campus in Nashville.
The next largest employer in Nashville is the government. More than 12,000 people are employed in various positions by the federal government, and more than 17,000 people are employed by the Tennessee State Government. Another 18,820 people are employed in various positions with the county and city governments and public schools.
Nissan North America provides another 10,900 jobs in the area. Of the remaining employers in the top ten, three of them work within the health services industry, and the other two are Asurion, an insurance provider, and Amazon.
Additional Large Companies in Nashville
- Community Health Systems
- HCA Holdings, Inc.
- Saint Thomas Health Systems
- The Kroger Company
Nashville Economy Facts And Figures
Nashville is much more than a place for a quick visit. The city has experienced a steady population growth for years, while many other US communities suffered through declines. In 2018, the city's population was nearly 700,000 people, with a metro area of about two million people. Since 2006, the number of residential units downtown has doubled to around 12,200 units. These factors complement the 2017 median household income of $63,939 and June 2019 unemployment rate of 2.6%.
Annual GDP per Capita in Nashville
Nashville is a diverse city with diverse industries that keep it afloat. The largest employer categories in the community are trade, transportation, utilities, professional and business services, education, healthcare, and government.
Of these, only professional and business services experienced a double-digit decline in employment numbers since June 2019. The fundamentally-strong economy bodes well for the long term opportunities within the community.
Part of the Picture
Economic stability is an important factor in deciding to adopt a new community. Doing research before the move can help make sure the action is the correct decision. However, understanding the industries is just one component of community research. After all, the opportunities within a community often determine overall success.