IT security professionals are in demand right now. They are also very hard to find. According to a report from the ISC2, the IT security industry needs about 3 million more cybersecurity workers. More than 70% of companies are affected by the cybersecurity talent shortage. It is becoming a big problem for modern businesses. This problem has been amplified due to the coronavirus pandemic. Most people are working from their homes. Thus, there are more endpoints present in every network. Companies need the best IT security solutions for protecting their network from attackers. The number of cyber-attacks has increased by 65% during the pandemic.
The unemployment rate among IT security professionals is zero. This shows the importance of IT security professionals. The salary of IT security professionals also ranges from $100000-$127000. However, companies are paying higher salaries to attract IT security talent. Sometimes it can take almost 6 months to fill a vacancy at the junior level It is very hard to find senior talent right now. Enterprises are offering various offers to poach talent from one another. Due to this, most hiring managers are feeling uncomfortable. In this article, we are going to share some tips which will help you in dealing with the cybersecurity talent shortage.
Reasons behind the IT security talent shortage
There are various factors that are affecting the IT security market. The number of products and services related to IT is increasing. More companies are moving towards the IT sector. Thus, there is a lot of demand in the market. Companies are trying to solve this problem by using IT automation. However, IT automation can’t help you in solving this problem. You still need access to good cybersecurity talent for protecting your data and assets.
Organizations also understand the importance of IT security. Cyberattacks have increased by 70% in 2020. This is becoming a big issue for companies. Data breaches are the worst nightmare of CEOs. It can destroy an entire business. You will be liable to legal fines and penalties. A data breach will also affect the reputation of your business. It will become hard to attract new customers. Thus, companies now understand the importance of IT security. In the past, companies were sticking with one or two IT security experts only. However, this only leads to a data breach.
The cybersecurity field is also less attractive when compared to other IT fields. An 18-year-old wants to study software development. Everyone wants to become the next Mark Zuckerberg or Bill gates. Due to this, most of the IT talent goes towards software development. Machine learning and other IT fields are also very lucrative. The IT security industry needs to market itself better for attracting young talent.
The cybersecurity field is also tougher when compared to other IT fields. Candidates need to learn a lot of things. They need to spend a lot of time testing and analyzing systems. The entry-level requirements are also very high. This is mostly due to the bad hiring practices. Companies are always finding the perfect fit for their business. They don’t want to give chances to new employees. Due to this, there are very few candidates who can meet your requirement.
How to deal with the Cybersecurity talent shortage?
The talent acquisition problem is even more difficult when you are looking for a specific skill set. For example, if you are looking for someone who is an expert in IDS systems, then you might need to expand your search horizon. There are very few candidates who know about typical cybersecurity topics. You need to become more adaptive if you want to attract cybersecurity talent.
Review your hiring process
You need to have some standards in your hiring process. However, you should ensure that you are checking the most important requirements only. This will help you in expanding your search horizon. More IT security professionals can apply for your company if you have lenient requirements.
You can ask for a formal degree in the cybersecurity field from the applicant. However, some candidates have the same talent without any degree. They might have done some Bootcamp for learning about IT security. There are hundreds of resources available on the internet. If someone is serious, then they can learn most of the things online. Thus, you should ensure that your requirements are simple. The better way to do shortlisting is by designing a test. This test will help you in ensuring that the candidates actually know about the cybersecurity domain.
Get IT security experts involved in the hiring process
Your HR doesn’t know anything about the cybersecurity field. Even your IT engineers don’t know everything about the IT security field. The best way to shortlist a resume is by involving your IT security professionals in the hiring process. Make sure that your IT security professionals are taking the actual interview. They can also design a unique test for candidates. This will help you in shortlisting the best talent. Your HR department should be involved in the last interview stage only. Only a good IT security professional can test other security professionals.
Re-evalute your positions
Some companies open positions like Threat hunter. This is very specific as you are only looking for people who are experts in IDS systems. You should first check your current position description. Try to make it simple by removing all the corporate jargon.
This seems obvious to most companies. However, almost every company will overlook this problem.
Setup up a mentoring model
You can use this system for training your new hires. Your experienced cybersecurity professionals can guide the new hires. This will help your new hires in acquiring the necessary skills. Make sure that you are looking for people who want to learn new things. The IT security field is ever-evolving. There are new vulnerabilities that are discovered every day. Attackers are always looking for new attacks to steal data. Thus, you should ensure that you have employees who want to learn new things. They should keep up with the IT security world. You have to make sure that your employees are ready to meet new challenges.
Some candidates only focus on getting the right degrees and accreditations. However, this is not going to help your company. The IT security field will keep evolving with time. Thus, you should look for people who want to try new things. This can actually increase the burden on your senior employees. Make sure that they are ready for this first. Don’t put all the pressure on your senior IT employees.
Offer training to new employees
You need a new game plan if you want to recruit and retain the best IT talent. Most surveys show that cybersecurity professionals give a lot of value to professional development opportunities and mentorship. They want to learn about the latest IT technologies. Thus, you should offer training to your new employees. This will help you in attracting young cybersecurity talent. The millennial generation has become the largest generation in the current workforce. Thus, you should focus on offering staff development to your employees.
Recruit through professional networks
Most companies agree that it is very difficult to find new cybersecurity talent. Entry-level workers are somewhat easier as a lot of students are doing courses related to software development. However, finding candidates for senior positions is very difficult.
You need to recruit through professional networks if you want to solve this problem. Most security professionals find their job by networking with industry contacts. IT security managers should attend various IT security events. This will help them in finding the best IT security talent.
Recruit existing employees
You should also consider the employees that are already working in your company. There are many IT guys who want to switch to the cybersecurity field. They have enough knowledge. However, they still need some training in the cybersecurity domain. You should ensure that you are properly conducting this retraining program. If your employees want to switch their careers to cybersecurity, then you should help them.
Use IT automation
IT automation will help you in reducing human involvement. Thus, you will need access to fewer human resources. Most vendors are offering automation tools to businesses. These automation tools will help you in easing the burden of your IT security field. Orchestration and automation are very important for modern businesses. It will help you in saving a lot of time and resources. You should consider investing your resources into automation and orchestration.
Create a cybersecurity talent acquisition plan
Your senior IT staff should work on creating a cybersecurity talent acquisition plan. You can consult your recruitment partners as they have good knowledge of this market. They know where the best opportunities are. If your recruitment partner has a strong network, then they can help you in finding the best talent.
Your recruitment partner can also help you in marketing your brand to the talent you want to hire. A good employee value proposition will give an insight of your employee to the candidates.
You should ensure that the LinkedIn profile of your company is up to date. Most candidates will use Glassdoor to check other employee’s feedback. Thus, you should regularly monitor your Glassdoor page. You should share employee testimonials with candidates. Make sure that your employees can honestly refer you to one of the best places to work.
Upskill existing talent
The best way to avoid the cybersecurity talent shortage is by providing proper training to your existing employees. This will ensure that your existing employees are up to date. Academic training can help you in this. However, you can’t fulfill your demand by just providing academic training. Transferrable skills will help you in developing and attracting talent.
You should look for people who have strong problem skills. They can easily learn about the cybersecurity domain. Only people with strong problem skills can write good scripts and do reverse engineering. Programmers and developers are generally perfect for this role. They can easily learn about the additional things as they are already experts in programming. You can train them about the latest cybersecurity technologies.
The cybersecurity sector is always changing. Thus, you should try to keep up with the developments. You can provide courses to your employees. This will ensure that your employees are keeping up with the industry.
Work with MSPs
This is the easiest and most effective method to solve the cybersecurity talent shortage. MSPs have access to the best IT talent. They have access to a team of large IT professionals. Thus, you don’t need to worry about hiring your in-house IT security professionals. You can hire a small team of IT security professionals and outsource the rest of the work to a good MSP.
MSPs will provide managed firewall services to your business. This will help you in protecting your business from internet-based attacks. It will act as the first line of defense against hacking attacks. This will also help your IT experts in analyzing other important areas. Experienced MSPs like Bleuwire will help you in setting up and managing a firewall. You don’t need to worry about hiring IT security experts for managing your firewalls.
They will also protect you from dreadful ransomware attacks. MSPs will use endpoint security services for protecting your business. This will help you in avoiding downtime caused by ransomware attacks. You will always have access to your data.
They will also help you in managing your backups. This will protect your business from data loss. You can easily recover your data in case of data loss. Most IT security breaches occur due to human error. Thus, you should ensure that you have access to your data backup. Data backups can save your business in case of a data breach.
How Bleuwire can help your business?
Bleuwire has access to the best IT security professionals. This will ensure that you don’t need to worry about a cybersecurity shortage. You will get access to a large team of IT security professionals. Bleuwire will also regularly monitor your network. This will ensure that attackers can’t propagate in your network. They will help you in creating a unique IT security strategy for your business. Bleuwire will help you in handling all the issues related to IT security. If you need more information regarding IT security services, then you can contact Bleuwire.