The existence of a cybersecurity skills gap is universally accepted throughout business, industry and every other sector.

 

The CyberSeek Global Security Heat Map identifies more than 600,000 total cybersecurity job openings just in the United States. Considering that the same tool only identifies a little over one million total employees currently working in cybersecurity, the workforce needs to grow by at least 50% to even come close to filling the demand.

Understanding what skills your teams need is the first step toward ensuring they can prevent, detect and respond effectively to threats. It can ensure that development teams bring security controls to the design phase. And it can reduce the impact of cyberattacks, both on your organization and those that use your software.

Here are four key steps you can take to identify the skills that are missing in your organization.

1. Build a cybersecurity competency model

Organizations can start by defining the cybersecurity competencies needed for each job within your technical teams, describing the knowledge, skills and abilities (KSA) required to excel in a given position. A well-designed model will identify the KSAs and associated behaviors necessary to establish proficiency, and prioritizes them according to beginner, intermediate or advanced levels.

2. Evaluate and measure cybersecurity competency

With a cybersecurity competency model in place, the next step is to see how your technical teams stack up against that model. A thorough assessment of the skills you have on hand will provide a clear view of the organization’s skill gap. It can help determine where training is needed, where resources should be allocated and how to prepare proactively for future threats.

3. Identify areas of strengths and weaknesses at the team level, as well as skills silos

Just as important as assessing individual skills is identifying skills gaps at the team level. A strong team should have a diverse mix of technical, cybersecurity and professional strengths. Assessing the team as a whole can identify a key missing skill — such as a familiarity with penetration testing — that could put the organization at risk.

It’s likewise important to identify skills silos, where, for example, only one team member has any knowledge of a priority topic, such as PCI standards.

4. Track the effectiveness of your efforts to close the skills gap

Once skills needs are identified, organizations can close the gap either by hiring new team members or training existing members. Training can be accomplished through several methods, including instructor training, online courses, mentoring, peer learning, webinars and job shadowing/job sharing.

 

Closing the cybersecurity skills gap starts with identifying the skills that are missing in your technical teams, then prioritizing the skills your organization most needs and acquiring them through training or hiring. Don't put your business at risk and hire reliable cybersecurity experts.  Contact us today or book a discovery session.