Good news for those looking for security jobs – finding highly-skilled tech talent will be a top hiring priority for companies in 2016. According to Dice’s latest hiring survey, a record 78% of hiring managers anticipate more hiring in the first half of 2016 compared to the second half of 2015.
If you are looking for a new security job, now is the time to start applying.
What employers are looking for when hiring security professionals
Whether you are graduating this year or have been in the industry for years, companies are all looking for similar things when hiring security professionals:
Obviously, technical skills are important to getting security jobs, but candidates who also have communication skills are more likely to get hired; companies need security professionals who can bridge the gap between tech-savvy employees and the tech-challenged employees. In some ways, a company’s security is only as strong as its least tech-savvy employee, so if you can effectively train employees to adhere to security practices, you are an ideal candidate.
While certifications are not substitute for real-world experience, they do show employers that you are committed to keeping up with the industry’s new tools, best practices and protocols. Secure360 has an in-depth article on picking the right security certification for you, but CISSP and CISM are good investments for anyone looking for a security job. If you are ready to start learning, our affiliates the Twin Cities Minnesota (ISC)2 Chapter and the Minnesota Chapter of ISSA are hosting a CISSP study group starting on February 23, 2016.
To new grads or those changing careers, this can be the biggest barrier to getting a new job; you need experience to get a job, but you can’t get a job without experience. Take every internship or job shadowing opportunity you have; this will show employers you are passionate about the field and committed to learning. Then, during the hiring process, emphasize and illustrate your ability to learn quickly and adapt to the fast moving technology industry. Another candidate may have more years on the job than you, but if they are stuck in their ways, they are not as appealing as a candidate who is willing to change with the company and industry needs.
Security trends come and go, but the three qualities above are timeless; companies will always be looking for communication skills, certifications and experience when hiring security professionals.