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Cyber Security Wages Set To Soar In 2018

05 / 03 / 2018

Cyber security spending is on the rise worldwide, with recent Gartner figures predicting that 2018 will see an eight per cent increase for budgets in this area.

The IT analyst firm believes organisations will spend approximately $96 billion (£71.7 billion) in an effort to contain threats, meet regulatory obligations and reassure stakeholders.

But while budgets appear to be growing, businesses may experience cyber security skills gaps in the UK. This lack of talent is likely to see wages soar this year, according to the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC).

In fact, an REC survey of recruitment agencies last month revealed that all respondents believed demand for cyber security personnel would increase this year. Of these, 81 per cent said demand would rise "significantly".

Tackling the cyber security skills shortage

A range of measures has been announced in the UK over the last year in an effort to boost cyber security skills.

Many initiatives can provide long-term solutions to the problem, but the REC research indicated that organisations might struggle to fill talent gaps in the near future.

More than four-fifths of recruitment consultants felt the country's workforce wouldn't be able to meet demand for cyber security experts over the next 12 months. Just 16 per cent believed there was enough talent to satisfy the market.

"There are very few people with the skills needed, so employers will be competing with each other for the limited talent," said REC chief executive Kevin Green.

"The good news for people working in cyber security is they could well see a pay increase next year as a result."

REC's findings echoed our own research, which showed budgets for information and cyber security had increased over the last 12 months in mid-2017.

Cyber professionals could therefore expect their salary to jump 17 per cent, on average, if they chose to switch jobs.

Is now the time to switch jobs?

A shortage of suitable candidates could mean a growing number of cyber security employees begin exploring new opportunities in 2018.

Our research showed 32 per cent of professionals listed salary as the factor they would most like to change about their current position. A further 25 per cent cited career development.

With a dwindling talent pool and rising demand, skilled individuals may feel now is the right time to take the next step in their career. According to the REC, employers may need to act fast if they want to protect against skills gaps.

"Employers need to think realistically about how to fill roles if they are to protect themselves from debilitating cyber attacks," said Mr Green.

"This means they should make the most of transferrable skills and create training opportunities which would benefit employees and new applicants."

A staggering 94 per cent of recruitment consultants in the REC survey predicted salaries would increase for cyber security vacancies, while four per cent indicated remuneration would stay the same. None thought salaries would decrease.

Would you like to discuss taking the next step in your cyber security career? Please contact Barclay Simpson today and talk with one of our specialist consultants.

Our 2017 Compensation and Market Trends Report combines our review of the prevailing conditions in the security & resilience recruitment market together with the results of our latest employer survey.

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