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The rise in demand for Cyber roles and capability is a global issue that is getting more acute.

The critical importance of Cyber and subsequent demand for resources is a global challenge that can’t be solved through traditional training and learning solutions. Not long ago, the word Cyber was synonymous with a very narrow group of skills, capabilities and people or was lumped in with IT security.  Entrance to this club was limited to those with significant experience, qualifications and arguably the resilience to stay in an unforgiving industry.

We’re living in an ever-evolving world; one where data continues to become the new gold and geopolitical boundaries become blurred. As such, the need for secure and diverse Cyber workforce capabilities is outstripping supply.  This growth brings with it new roles and the realisation that this is no longer a narrowed specialist field, but one that houses many roles with a multitude of requirements.

“The Cybersecurity Profession Needs to Grow by 3.4 Million People to Close Global Workforce Gap.” – (ISC)² Cybersecurity Workforce Study, 2022.

Traditional methods to address this growing demand have largely stemmed from filling the bottom end of the funnel with new entrants either at graduate level or through retraining.  There is no doubt that this is still an extremely valuable and important part of a broader strategy, especially in relation to veteran capabilities. However, with more diverse capabilities required to address greater diversity in roles, then new and innovative strategies are required.

What constitutes the cyber human of the future?

With the diversity of roles and the breadth of capabilities required in this ecosystem, it is becoming increasingly important to understand your Human Cyber resources and capabilities through the lens of their human skills, and not just the qualifications, skills and experience required. 

Clearly there are some critical roles in this sector where specific technical requirements and security clearance are non-negotiable. However, if you focus on this thin wedge, you are missing the glaring fact that this is one small part of the much broader ecosystem in which there is increasing interaction and collaboration. 

Cyber professionals integrate, communicate and work with other people, roles, departments and entities. It’s time to change the narrative, moving away from outdated perceptions and job specifications that are unreasonable and no longer fit for purpose.

A truly diverse workforce should encompass a broad range of human capability and potential

According to the World Economic Forum, more diverse teams are likely to drive innovation and economic growth across the board. They also reflect the diversity of audiences we are trying to reach. 

In building a more diverse workforce, we immediately help to address the Cyber resources gap by opening a door that was previously closed to so many people. By doing so, we are really starting to change the narrative. After all, perception is key. The Cyber human of the future is a long way from the traditional labels of the past. 

With the diversity of opportunities that now exist in this ecosystem, it’s imperative that we have a diverse Cyber workforce. Broader roles require broader capabilities which allows us to tap into a much broader pool of potential and actual talent. Quite often there’s talent sitting in your own backyard waiting to be surfaced.

By adding human skills and natural strengths to this quandary, that gives us the ability to map transferable traits and importantly aptitude while also bolstering a significant gap. The double whammy here is that we start to make the opportunity to enter the Cyber workforce easier and also more attractive/understood to a broader population who historically have not considered or been interested in this career avenue.

Retention is a critical part of the puzzle

What about the millions of Cyber professionals who are already committed to this exciting and critical sector? If we don’t consider retention of our current cyber talent as part of the broader strategy we are collectively doomed!

With so many statistics, companies and governments focussed on addressing the shortage, the world seems to have forgotten those who have already invested significant time and energy to be a part of the current Cyber footprint. We are not going to plug the gap if we don’t ensure we invest in our current Cyber professionals. By changing the narrative, and daring to invest in their human skills and broader soft skills rather than continually focus on the accreditation hamster wheel, imagine the positive impact for the entire sector. 

In summary

This journey is far from complete, however we firmly believe that nothing will change if you change nothing. This is a global issue, gaining momentum daily. It’s going to take innovative solutions to turn it around

For more information about how Humanico can help you understand and maxmise your Cyber workforce, get in touch with us below.

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