Three Game-Changing Strategies for Addressing the Cybersecurity Talent Shortage


Regardless of the background, anyone can succeed as a cybersecurity professional with enough intelligence, passion, and drive. To address the difficulties in finding, hiring, and retaining cybersecurity professionals, some CISOs are reassessing their staffing strategies, and these efforts have been met with success.

The fact that the demand for cybersecurity expertise continues to vastly outpace the supply of readily available and qualified cyber professionals presents a serious challenge for organizations of all sizes.

The candidate pool for cybersecurity hiring has always been small, consisting of individuals with the usual academic qualifications, security certifications, work experience, and specialized technical security skill sets. But it is obvious that the industry needs to become more creative in its search for talent as the demand for cybersecurity specialists keeps rising.

Also Read: Three Major Stumbling Blocks to Employing ML for Cybersecurity

The question on the minds of every CISO is how. Here are a few strategies they can adopt:

Don’t Stop at the Resume

There are concerns about whether the quality of the talent entering the organization would suffer when companies widen selection criteria. To address this issue, it is necessary to look beyond the traditional CV to identify the essential hard and soft skills a candidate must possess. Then, they must develop standardized screening procedures that include the following steps:

  • Conduct evaluations –A technical skills assessment can be carried out to obtain a more precise and consistent sense of a candidate’s abilities. Although this is often seen as a greater time commitment by all parties, it can also reveal a candidate’s actual commitment and desire to work with the team.
  • Examine the culture fit –Hiring managers that place a high value on this factor are more likely to succeed in filling positions than others. Companies must take the candidate’s cultural fit into account when evaluating them during interviews. To better understand the personality of candidates, video interviews must be conducted as early in the process as is practical.
  • Address bias –To combat bias, employers must take proactive measures to address it during the hiring process. They should develop a consistent framework for evaluating applicants and solicit feedback from various sources from the perspectives of skills and culture. They must also be intentional in including a diverse group of candidates in the interview process. Everyone involved has to receive training on how to identify personal bias and get past it.

Have a Strategy in Place to Train Less Experienced Employees

To reduce risk, organizations often hire highly skilled cyber professionals. The stakes are high, after all. A small mistake made by an inexperienced security professional could result in breaches, brand damage, financial losses, and more.

While larger organizations are ready to take on this risk, small and medium-sized enterprises find it more difficult to make this choice. No matter the size, these steps can position organizations for success:

  • IT leaders must collaborate with the HR team to find the best budding talent for their requirements.
  • They must integrate initiatives for demonstrating skills into the hiring process.
  • Through training and development initiatives, they must ensure newly hired employees are capable of meeting objectives. Leveraging third-party training providers as partners can scale development initiatives.
  • IT leaders should assess the talent they already have on the team and think about internal upskilling.
  • They must evaluate employee skill levels and provide opportunities for development for employees both inside and outside of the technology industry.

These actions offer a variety of advantages, including cost savings from a hiring perspective, a reduction in turnover because of employee loyalty as a result of the investments made in their growth, and more.

Share the Wealth

The genius of DevSecOps and DevOps is that they transfer some security responsibilities from dedicated IT security teams in operations to the development side, with the notion that security should be baked into every stage of application development.

Also Read: Preparing IT Security for Unpredictable Cyber-threats

More employees within the firm will now have a new opportunity to assume positions as security champions, ambassadors, advocates, etc. Additionally, it decreases the strain on businesses to fill openings on the security team and enhances the incentive to think beyond the box when searching internally for these champions.

Employers can find people who are talented and passionate about security and who, with some training and mentoring, can become top-notch experts by following these steps.

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