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Shifting Demand In Security: How IT Professionals Can Remain Competitive

In today’s business world, there is no doubt that cloud technology has changed the way people work. When you can access data anywhere, it can make a business more flexible, agile, and competitive. However, this shift to the cloud has one major drawback. “As organizations move toward this new technology, their data becomes more accessible—and vulnerable,” says Michael Manganelli, a Technical Recruiter within The Execu|Search Group’s Information Technology division. “As a result, demand for security professionals has shifted.”

Experience in cloud security is becoming highly sought after, especially for those who can provide custom cloud, cyber, and application security architecture solutions.  “And while higher level security architects are seeing a rise in their value, the increase in pay is extending all the way through the security field,” explains Michael. “Even IT Security Analysts can expect a substantial pay increase compared to just a few years ago.”

This increase in pay even extends to new grads, who can expect to make a lot more with their Computer Science degree than previously thought. “Because the need is so great, CS majors can jump right into a security role and gain valuable experience immediately,” says Michael. “While developer roles are often more appealing to new grads, it’s important for them to understand that there are a lot of other great career paths available to them. For younger IT professionals who also hold a certificate in Security, they will be setting themselves apart from their competition.”

Read Also: 3 Cybersecurity Certifications On The Rise

For employers, their willingness to hire less experienced professionals speaks to a larger issue: employers are struggling to find security professionals who have the right experience to fit their environment. “Many employers are looking for a specific set of skills within certain security tools and technologies” explains Michael. “For example, they may want someone with a few years of experience in penetration testing as well as the ability to run risk assessments.” Actually finding the IT professional who holds this specific skillset is often challenging, and as a result, employers are desperate for well-rounded security professionals.

For security professionals who want to capitalize on this shifting demand and are looking to stand out in a competitive field, Michael recommends getting diversified experience. “If you want to be a top candidate in the IT security job market and increase your value, developing a wide-ranging skillset is critical.” says Michael.  As a result, you can set yourself up to be a highly competitive candidate by seeking experience in these areas of security:

  • Penetration Testing
  • Incident Response
  • Risk Assessment
  • Vulnerability Scans
  • Audit/Compliance