Fixing the cybersecurity shortage


Our Annual Enterprise Cyber Security Virtual Conference was held on the 22nd of September. At this event, our guest speakers were able to express their personal and professional opinions in regards to their organisational roles and responsibilities In addition, our industry partners had the opportunity to expand their client base and delegates were able to network, debate and collaborate in a virtual setting. overall, this created a rewarding atmosphere for everyone involved.

We will now share our insights on one of the standout presentations

The Increasing Skill Gap

Diana Moldovan, UK CISO Cyber Operations Lead, Aviva

Accompanied by,

Jay Davey, Cyber Security Engineer, Net Pay Solutions

According to studies conducted by  ISC2, the global shortage of cyber security professionals amounts to[GU1] around 4 million.This means that for cybersecurity professionals workloads have increased on average by 45% each year Just to meet the growing demand for skilled talent. [GU2]

So why do we have a skill gap in the first place?

As suggested by[GU3]  Diana, there is a high demand but not enough of a tailored offering[GU4] ..  whilst the IT industry has bloomed in the past decade, so too has the number of cyber criminals. Unfortunately, the industry lacks a sufficient talent strategy which adequately prepares candidates for a career in what is a demanding profession; it is a complex domain that requires a lot of dedication. In addition, cybersecurity is not marketed as an ‘attractive’ career for the younger generation.

  • What else is the industry lacking? The industry is not inclusive or diverse enough
  • Many employees are restricted from attending conferences, boot camps or any events
  • Universities are not preparing students for the workforce and are not providing enough support
  • There is not enough clarity in job descriptions and the overall description of cybersecurity
  • It is also expected that the skill gap will continue to INCREASE after Brexit!

Bridging the Gap

Thoughts around how best to reduce or resolve the growing skill gap consist of, creating immersive work experiences and directing investment to where it is most needed. In Higher Education, Universities should create workshops which establish an avenue for students to network with current industry professionals. Furthermore, businesses should invest their time in training junior staff to help them develop their skillset and evolve towards becoming the experts of tomorrow. It was said during the presentation that we should learn from apple and google, who have adapted their approach to qualifications by mandating that candidates no longer require degrees for graduate-level jobs.

Problems with the recruitment process

There are several issues regarding the recruitment process such as the job descriptions which we touched on briefly earlier[GU5] . First and Foremost, there is a confusing number of requirements such as, experience, expensive certifications (which are financially difficult to obtain), unrealistic expectations {see IBM advert for 12 years’ experience in Kubernetes, which is only 6 year’s old} { as well as a failure to adhere to gender-neutral guidelines, leaving many female candidates feeling disenfranchised. In many interview’s, companies fail to be transparent, and instead make empty promises and give an inaccurate account of the job requirements.

From a business perspective, what is required is better-directed investment in their talent strategies in order to attract the younger generation from a diverse range of backgrounds and for such efforts to be aligned with their interests and passions rather than trying to fit them to the role on offer. Someone with all the qualifications may not do the job as well as someone who is willing to dedicate themselves due to their innate motivation to learn, develop and grow.

Remember ECS UK will remain open till the 13th of October 2020, so please check it out if you have not already by clicking the link below.

We hope to see you all again next year at ECS UK, September 2021

Live Agenda

 

always try and be succinct; less is more [GU1]
should this read ‘that workloads have increased by 45% due to shortage’ rather than end with ‘just to meet the growing demand for skilled talent?’ [GU2]
good to introduce speaker into the story [GU3]
what kind of offering? context needed [GU4]
be careful with proof reading….we all makes these mistakes! [GU5]