More and more companies are finding their organizations grossly exposed to cyber-attacks because of a shortage in cybersecurity-trained IT specialists. Unfortunately for many of these companies, their current in-house IT specialists have maybe a year of basic cybersecurity experience, but lack the wealth of knowledge necessary to effectively stop these ever-evolving cyber-attacks. These specialists must continually acquire higher levels of cybersecurity education if they hope to keep up with these attacks and how to stop them.
The good news is that there are a lot of opportunities for organizations to properly train up their current IT talent and help them acquire the necessary experience and education to effectively combat cyber-attacks. Organizations need to begin seeking out talent from within their organization, and then cultivate that talent. So, how can you identify and acquire great IT talent with promising cybersecurity skills? These three suggestions are a good place to start:
- Adjust Your Expectations.
Because of the shortage of extensively experienced cybersecurity specialists, you will most likely need to adjust your expectations. You may need to change job descriptions to ask for interest in cybersecurity as opposed to demanding experience. If you’re a large enough company, then you definitely have a chance at getting one of the few well-trained specialists, but even then, you may have to be willing to invest more into training an individual.
You may find that it’s best to take someone who is already familiar with your company and your practices that you can then train into a new role. Essentially, drop expectations, start looking for potential, and jump at it when you find it.
- Seek Opportunity Everywhere.
With your expectations adjusted, you can start looking for cybersecurity potential everywhere. Thinking outside the box will help you to identify talent in many places. You may find that an older tech professional who doesn’t have a lot of experience with new tech and cyber-attacks is the perfect candidate. His or her extensive tech foundation could actually be the perfect platform for cyber-training.
Or, you may find a current employee who works in a totally different department and doesn’t have any experience with tech, but has a lot of interest, is a quick-learner, and is coachable. You’d probably be surprised how many now cyber-security professionals made a last-minute jump to IT. So, keep your eyes open, and look everywhere.
- Watch for Interest First.
Interest matters most! You can do a lot with a person who’s interested in cyber-security and willing to learn. So, as part of looking everywhere, send out inquiries within your organization to find out if there are any current employees who have an interest in cyber-security and in furthering their career.
Look into new methods for identifying individuals who might like cybersecurity. Hold an interest meeting, send out a company-wide email, and/or put up flyers all around. You never know who will respond, so put the opportunity in front of as many eyes as possible.