Having a Hard Time Finding IT Security Talent? You’re Not Alone

Joe McKendrick at ZDNet’s Service Oriented blog highlights an analysis showing that around 70 percent of job openings in IT are going unfilled:

This analysis comes from CareerBuilder, written in partnership with Economic Modeling Specialists International (EMSI). The analysis looked at EMSI’s labor market database, which pulls from over 90 national and state employment resources. CareerBuilder and EMSI looked at the average number of people hired per month in more than 700 occupations from January 2015 to September 2015, and compared that to the number of job postings for each occupation (aggregated from online job sites for the same period). The most job vacancies were seen among IT, healthcare, and business leadership positions. Demand appears to be hottest for marketing managers, which recorded a total of 91% of openings going unfilled per month over the past year. (Yes, believe it or not, there appears to be a shortage of marketing pros…) Polymaths who have skills in both programming and a key business area can expect to be in really high demand.

One of the biggest vacancy rates was in information security analyst jobs, a whopping 89 percent of which are apparently going unfilled. As Gerrard Cowan at Fortune points out, the CareerBuilder/EMSI study isn’t the only one turning up a talent shortage in cybersecurity:

“We have an awful lot of cyber vacancies, as does everybody else,” says Budgie Dhanda, sales director of security at QinetiQ, the UK-based defense and security business that designed the biological attack scenario. The shortfall is across the board, he says, from software developers to project managers. “There aren’t enough people out there to meet the needs of all the suppliers.”

The talent gap is a global problem. In the U.S. alone in 2014, companies posted 49,493 jobs that require Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) certification, a major cybersecurity qualification. However, only 65,362 people are CISSP certified in total, and most of them already have jobs, according to an October report from U.S. defense giant Raytheon and the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA), a public-private partnership that promotes Internet security.