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For Cybersecurity Experts, Skills-Based Hiring is the New Black

Embracing skills over degrees: Revolutionizing cybersecurity hiring practices to bridge the workforce gap and unlock talent potential.
Emily Hill
Contributing Writer

During a Capitol Hill hearing, cybersecurity experts emphasized the need to shift away from requiring four-year college degrees as a prerequisite for hiring in the cybersecurity field. The experts highlighted the cybersecurity workforce shortage, with over 660,000 open jobs nationwide between May 2022 and April 2023. The experts proposed adopting skills-based hiring practices, reducing education and certification requirements, prioritizing training for high-demand skills, and building career pathways to enhance advancement opportunities for cybersecurity professionals.

Why it matters: Embracing skills-based hiring practices in the cybersecurity field has the potential to alleviate the workforce shortage, foster diversity, and streamline the hiring process, resulting in a more robust and inclusive cybersecurity workforce.

  • Shifting to skills-based hiring practices and considering certifications can help bridge the gap by expanding the pool of eligible candidates and meeting the demand for skilled cybersecurity workers.
  • These cybersecurity experts see this shift as a money-making tactic. Why waste time on a 4-year degree when organizations could prioritize relevant certifications, hands-on experience, and practical skills that directly correlate with the job requirements?
  • Removing bachelor’s degree requirements from cybersecurity job postings can reduce hiring costs and significantly increase the candidate pool. By prioritizing skills and experience over formal education, organizations can streamline the hiring process, potentially saving resources and improving efficiency.

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