Recruitment in the IT Security market...

It's in a familiar place that you find me this morning, heading south on an early train.  I am in good form considering how early I woke up but also apprehensive.  Today is all about deadlines, the need to complete this blog post, get to the 101 things I need to do with my team today and to plan for the CWJobs' Breakfast Briefing next week. Don't get me wrong I love presenting, I love doing a bit of public speaking but I am up against it a little. The event has focus on the recruitment needs in the IT security market which has made me the about what that actually means. Are candidates in this sector any more complex than in others? Are the hiring organisations any more demanding than elsewhere? What are the drivers for anyone working in IT security recruitment?

I'm trying not to peak too soon with these ideas, I've not written my presentation yet so undoubtedly those themes will come back but undoubtedly there are some uniques in this Market unlike others.  Primarily it's the pace of change, I work for a global software business that was formed on the back of the security market and even with all the technical resources available to us we struggle sometimes (no not a cue to call me).  I know where our marketing will be focused, where the next large deal will come from but face daily challenges continually attracting and assessing good people.

The scale of the requirement cannot be underestimated, as a consumer we are impacted by security breaches more and more, with high visibility data hacks appearing in the press almost every day.  Finding people who can think on a huge scale is difficult.  Sure their one element might be a tiny part of the solution, but it is the tiny parts that get interrogated and attacked by outside threats.  Candidates with a squeaky clean background will be needed in what is becoming a complex world of personal data management, we are all scared about ID cards when in reality your online games provider or supermarket knows an awful lot more than the government.

Lastly, for today at least we need candidates that can work with ambiguity, that it is their ability to adapt and learn that will outweigh what they currently know.  Don't get me wrong candidates will still need to have a core skill but more than that must be able to learn about new solutions, new threats and move quickly.  It is all too easy to get bogged down in what are the latest technical skills only to find that in a few years things have moved on and you have been left behind.

Maybe my view is simple.  I look for the best talent in the market at a price that my company can afford to work for us creating the next product or service.  Our focus is less on support and maintenance more on what the client demands from us next.  We use our global muscle wherever we can, having a direct relationship with the candidate wherever we can, not just to save cost but to own and manage that relationship.  More importantly every potential future hire we meet has the potential to work for symantec even if we don't have the vacancy available today, most agencies are looking for the next fee and don't have the time to do this properly.

So thinking ahead to next week, there will be something about the market although not much... certainly something about the skills required, the market forces put on salaries, the ability for the global players to buy talent but also that relationship between candidate and future employer... Oh and something about social media... without getting too hung up on it...

If you are coming to the CWJobs event on 13th july ( do be sure to come and say hello before or after the main features, there are plenty of opportunities to drink coffee and talk.

See you there... M

For more about Martin click here. To get in touch click here and to follow on twitter @MDangerfield.