Raytheon’s Colorado operations are growing.
The aerospace and defense company entered into a merger with United Technologies Corp. earlier this year. to Raytheon Technologies. An internal reshuffle combined the Aurora-based intelligence portion of the business with the company’s aerospace business to create Raytheon Intelligence and Space.
As a result, Raytheon is hiring 200 new employees in Colorado alone, said Bill Sullivan, vice president and general manager of Aurora, the headquarters of the company’s new space arm.
“Everything our company does about hardware or software-based ground control systems in space is pulled out of this Colorado facility,” said Sullivan. “We’re looking for all kinds of people” to hire.
You are looking for software developers, system-level software developers and employees who can integrate commercially available software packages for customers, develop cloud-based systems and understand cybersecurity.
“With all of the systems we build for our customers, the cybersecurity of those systems is paramount,” said Sullivan.
The coronavirus pandemic posed logistical challenges for the 2,500 employees who work on the Raytheon campus in East Aurora. Those who do classified work must work from the office, while those who cannot work from home.
Sullivan, who is moving home from the office, said about 50% of the workspace is in use. He said protective barriers have been put in place and masks and temperature controls are required to keep people safe. Virtual meetings replace face-to-face meetings.
While the coronavirus has presented Raytheon with the same challenges all businesses face, it hasn’t slowed the company’s growth. According to Sullivan, business in the aerospace industry is robust. The designation of Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs as the makeshift headquarters of U.S. Space Command was a boost to state industry, Sullivan said.
Raytheon has approximately 2,800 employees in Colorado, including 200 at a satellite facility in Aurora and others serving in the Colorado Springs military. The Air Force is one of Raytheon’s primary customers. The company developed the ground control system for the Air Force’s new generation of global positioning system satellites, three of which were launched.
The company also builds ground command and control systems and processes data for NASA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and other federal agencies.
In February, representatives from Raytheon and several other aerospace companies met with the state to meet growing demand for employees in Colorado. The size of the state’s aerospace industry is the second largest after California.
Aerospace workers, especially those in cybersecurity, are in great demand, according to Sullivan. But he believes the lure of living in Colorado gives Raytheon an edge. And there is one more.
“What we’re bringing to the table from Raytheon’s point of view is the work we’re doing here, really cool. Room control is really cool, ”said Sullivan.
This story has been updated to reflect that Raytheon’s new space business is headquartered in Aurora.