Home CioAxis Cybersecurity talent shortage will get worse

Cybersecurity talent shortage will get worse


A total of 62% of CISOs think the global cybersecurity talent shortage will get worse over the next five years, according to Global Snapshot: The CISO in 2020, a new report exploring the role and demographics of Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs), as well as the challenges they face, by Marlin Hawk, the global executive search firm.

The report suggests that the demands of such a rapidly evolving role mean that senior candidates often lack the right level of technical knowledge (34%), don’t have the right experience (30%) or simply aren’t the right cultural fit (10%).

The report explores the relatively new role of the CISO, as information security prevails as an issue that affects businesses of every size. It finds that information security is more than a technical issue; it blends risk, strategic vision and knowledge of the threat landscape with people and data management.

The research analyses responses from 500 cybersecurity executives working in businesses with 500 or more employees across the US, Europe and APAC.

“As the need to protect customer data grows, business leaders have been attempting to work out how best to respond to this new reality and most importantly, whose responsibility it should be. The constant cyberthreat has completely changed the way boards around the world approach risk and it’s an issue that every business leadership team has had to respond to,” said John-Claude Hesketh, Global Managing Partner at Marlin Hawk.

“The challenge now is for board directors to work out how to value these senior cybersecurity professionals and integrate them into strategic business decisions, while navigating a dramatic global talent shortage,” said Hesketh.

Three major findings of the report are:

There is a global talent shortage: 66% of respondents say they are struggling to recruit senior talent because candidates lack the right level of technical knowledge (34%), don’t have the right experience (30%) or simply aren’t the right culture fit (10%). This is particularly prevalent in APAC where 91% say they find it difficult to find the right talent, compared to 61% in the UK and 54% in the US.

The CISO role is dynamic and in a state of evolution: 73% of respondents report that they are under 45 years old and 29% took the role because they want to be at the forefront of one of the biggest business growth areas.

There is rarely a clear upward progression from the CISO role: A symptom of this is that 85% of senior cybersecurity professionals are either actively looking for a new role or would consider one if approached. The average tenure in CISO roles globally is four years.

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