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Securing a Nation

Improving Federal Cybersecurity Hiring in the United States

March 18, 2021 by Emsi Burning Glass

In the 21st Century, there are perhaps no jobs more crucial to our national and personal security than those in cybersecurity. And nowhere are the perils of the cybersecurity talent shortage more severe than for the nation’s most consequential cybersecurity employer: the federal government.

Securing a Nation: Improving Federal Cybersecurity Hiring in the United States focuses on two goals: understanding the state of the federal government’s cybersecurity workforce and recruiting practices today, and assessing the needs and challenges facing the federal cybersecurity workforce of tomorrow.

Key findings from the report include:

  • The federal government loses nearly one out of every five cybersecurity workers every year.
  • Yet entry-level salaries are comparable to private-sector salaries, although overall federal cybersecurity salaries cannot keep up with more lucrative offers in the private sector.
  • Federal cybersecurity jobs are less likely to demand the latest skills.
  • The federal cybersecurity workforce is underemphasizing roles responsible for securing IT infrastructure.
  • Federal cybersecurity jobs are nearly four times more likely to request a graduate degree compared to the private sector—yet federal jobs pay considerably less.
  • Yet the federal government is also dramatically more open than the private sector to hiring cybersecurity talent without a college degree.
  • The federal government has multiple levers it can pull to expand its recruiting pipeline and enhance its cybersecurity workforce.

Download the report.

Emsi Burning Glass

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