It has been no secret that the Cybersecurity workforce is facing a significant talent shortage. Whether due to natural lack of interest, decrease in STEM curriculum, or impressions of being an unfavorable career experience from those previously and currently in the industry – companies face an ever dwindling pool of qualified candidates while cyber threats increase exponentially.
As we quickly encroach upon a future with a minefield of cyber threats, organizations have kicked it in to overdrive to address the staffing issue. Washington lawmaker’s concerns lie within the military software and IT landscape with regards to the Pentagon’s cyber recruitment and retention. Losing talent to the higher paying private sector, lack of service obligations by military branches, and increased support for initiatives and scholarships targeting both trade schools and universities are top bill for Congress to address in the coming year.
The NSA (National Security Agency) has launched an “unprecedented hiring effort” this year. NSA Director Catherine Aucella stated “As NSA shifts to an era of strategic competition, it is critical that we’re able to build and sustain the diverse and expert workforce we need to continue working our missions”. This includes their biggest hiring push in 30 years with openings for over 3,000 employees. This week, the NSF (National Science Foundation) awarded the University of South Florida its largest grant to prepare students for cybersecurity careers in the federal government and other public institutions. The $3.7 million grant will establish the Cybersecurity Research and Education for Service in Government (CREST) program, which “will enable USF to recruit, mentor and provide scholarships to at least 28 graduate and undergraduate students and prepare them to serve as cybersecurity professionals in the federal government”. NSF Director Sethuraman Panchanathan said: “Cybersecurity is one of the most important issues confronting society in the information age, as our reliance on the national cyberspace evolves, so does the complexity of the cyber threats we face. It is imperative that we support the development of a strong cybersecurity workforce to ensure we can all benefit from secure and trustworthy cyberspace.”
In a more broad spectrum, it is suggested that companies simply don’t understand their particular needs, which is reflected in “catch-all” job descriptions. Cybersecurity is a broad industry, and as such part of the initiative for 2023 should be ensuring that boards understand the field better – “Whether it’s privacy regulations, cyber threats or simply commercial risks, he continued, each organization has to ask itself what skills it really needs to keep itself secure”.
Elevate specializes in Cybersecurity Recruiting and Staff Augmentation. If you are looking to fill an open position with top-tier talent, book an appointment with our specialist today.