Featured Image - Beyond a Resume: Real-World Scenarios to Evaluate Cyber Talent

Beyond a Resume: Real-World Scenarios to Evaluate Cyber Talent

Date Published: November 20, 2023 | Last Updated: February 21, 2024 | By VerifyNow

In the rapidly evolving world of cybersecurity, traditional recruitment methods, particularly the heavy reliance on resumes, may not always be the most effective way to evaluate talent. The recent webinar hosted by Accurate Background – Australia, featuring Annabel Reid, Head of Solutions at Fifth Domain, shed light on innovative approaches to assessing cyber talent. This blog post serves as a comprehensive summary of that webinar, and for those interested, an embedded video of the webinar is available for more in-depth insights.

The Cybersecurity Workforce Gap

Annabel Reid highlighted the significant gap in the cybersecurity workforce, with a demand for up to 6 million cyber professionals globally. In Australia, there’s a shortage of 40% in the workforce needed to ensure online safety. This gap presents challenges for SOC managers, CISOs, recruiters, and talent acquisition partners, often leading to hiring individuals who may not possess the requisite skills for cyber operations.

Traditional Hiring Challenges

Several key pain points in the hiring process were identified:

  1. Hiring based on resumes: Candidates who interview well or have impressive resumes might lack the practical skills required for cyber operations.
  2. Difficulty in finding trainable talent: Many organizations opt to train individuals from entry-level to specialist roles due to the scarcity and high salary expectations of experienced talent.
  3. The ‘Cowboy Factor’: A situation where the limited supply of talent leads to inflated salary expectations, sometimes disproportionate to the candidate’s actual skills.

Novel Approaches to Cyber Talent Acquisition

Annabel Reid proposed three innovative strategies to overcome these challenges:

  1. Building an internal team: Focusing on potential rather than existing skill sets, this approach involves training operators on the job. However, it is time-consuming and doesn’t provide immediate solutions.
  2. Developing future workforce pipelines: This involves preparing students for STEM careers and upskilling them in cybersecurity from an early stage.
  3. Finding talent in unexpected places: Looking beyond traditional hiring channels to include individuals who may not have a typical cybersecurity background. This approach can help in tapping into a diverse pool of talent.

Overcoming Unconscious Bias in Hiring

A major part of Reid’s presentation emphasized the importance of mitigating unconscious biases in the recruitment process. Traditional methods often overlook candidates who might not have the expected educational background or those who perform poorly in interviews. Reid suggests that these biases can be overcome through skills testing, which helps identify hidden talent.

Employment Screening: A Complementary Approach

While skills testing is crucial in cyber hiring, another complementary approach is employment screening. It provides an additional layer of assessment to ensure the candidate fits the role, meeting not only the skill requirements but also the integrity and reliability aspects necessary for sensitive cyber roles. Accurate Background – Australia, as a dedicated employment screening provider, offers a range of checks and balances that can add value to the recruitment process.

For organizations grappling with the challenges of cyber talent acquisition, exploring these novel approaches to hiring, combined with robust employment screening practices, can be a game-changer. If you’re looking to refine your cyber talent recruitment strategy chat to Fifth Domain or if want to discuss employment screening services, feel free to contact us today to discuss your needs.