2021 was full of excitement, uncertainty, and a demand for cybersecurity talent like we have never experienced before. As demand for cybersecurity talent grows due to widespread data breaches and ransomware attacks, supply is not keeping up.  According to the latest estimate by (ISC)2, the global cybersecurity workforce is experiencing a skills shortage of 2.72 million professionals or 65% of the current cybersecurity workforce.

At the same time, the overall hiring landscape has also drastically changed due to growing support for remote work among employees and employers alike. Now more than ever, candidates are investing not only in their careers but also in their mental and overall health and wellbeing. As candidates are re-evaluating their priorities, the market demands better pay and working conditions. This has put added stress on recruiters from all industries who are looking to seek top talent and deliver on hiring demands and needs. So, what needs to change, or what will we see in 2022?

  1. Faster wage growth for employees. It used to be that internal employees would generally only receive cost of living and performance-based wage increases on a marginal basis year-over-year. In some cases, employees were tied to the same salary for multiple years with little or no adjustment for inflation. In today’s market, we are seeing a 4% increase in compensation year-over-year for cybersecurity analysts in an effort to keep employees engaged, productive, and loyal.
  2. Culture and value add: Companies will have strategized ways to keep employees engaged with a purpose-driven culture within their organization. This means that leaders will need to consistently demonstrate strong positions on such issues as race, equity, diversity, and overall values that will lean into overall employee satisfaction.
  3. Cross-training of skill sets: Organizations who are struggling to identify and retain talent will need to invest heavily in the cross-training of specialized tech skill sets. Learning, development, and training will provide junior or non-experienced employees an opportunity to explore a new field or skill within their company.
  4. Recruiting: Internal talent teams, recruiting services, consulting companies must all invest in recruiting, both people and operations. Job postings are going to have to evolve, and profiles for a job need to be more focused on expected capabilities (e.g., the ability to complete certain tasks or projects) rather than a list of requirements that may have little or no relevance to the role. According to Jonah Dimeo, a managing director within MorganFranklin Consulting’s cybersecurity practice, “Recruiting is on the brink of an evolution equivalent to the change from gas-powered vehicles to the electric car; talent seeking will evolve in a similar manner to what we have seen in that industry.” Automation, efficiency, and how shiny things are on the surface will need to be a major focus in 2022.

The bottom line is, people are moving jobs for many reasons, and it’s occurring across all industries, not just in cybersecurity. Career progression and succession planning must be a major focus in 2022 for employers to attract and retain the cybersecurity talent they need. To scale and hire new talent, this broken mechanism of hiring will need to evolve. Processes such as streamlining interviews with proper feedback and turnaround times, virtual interviews, and closer partnership with recruiting will be a major focus of 2022.

The evolution of the remote worker is also here to stay. Companies will have to undergo a makeover of how they find, hire, and retain talent. The pandemic has taught us a few things: labor and talent are now more sought after than ever, making them top priorities for leaders of all organizations.

The major hiring trend that we expect to see in 2022 is candidates considering a wider range of factors when deciding to accept or decline an offer.  “Employers will need to be cognizant of the generational shift in the workforce we are seeing and the impact of this shift on how they reach and attract that talent,” Dimeo says.

Compensation, work/life balance, and corporate investment in a person’s career and their success are all major factors in this new hiring landscape. When talent comes in, the work they contribute, their overall well-being, and their position compared to market wage conditions will be the factors that really determine a company’s ability to successfully attract and retain that talent.

In case you missed it: Watch Vaco’s 1/18/22 LinkedIn Live event where @jonah dimeo and Vaco’s @taylor desseyn teamed up to discuss the trends and predictions they are looking forward to seeing in 2022. to one of our cybersecurity experts

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