Experts, Assemble! Creating Your IT “Dream Team”
Cybersecurity is a team sport. Even the best infosec experts can’t manage network, cloud computing, and mobile device security on their own — but attempting to tackle complex cybersecurity issues with a team of generalists also hampers success.What does this mean for your organization? That handling key cybersecurity challenges — such as the rise of phishing attacks, upticks in mobile malware and compliance management around new legislation such as GDPR
— requires a “dream team” of experts capable of both operating autonomously to solve complex tasks and forming a united front to tackle emerging issues. Given disparate skill sets, experience levels and current IT certifications, however, it’s a daunting task for executives and infosec employees to leverage both existing expertise and nurture burgeoning talent to create the ideal team. Need help? Here are four ways to help your cybersecurity team come out on top.
Teamwork Makes the Dream Work
It’s not a new concept, but it has the benefit of staying power: Teamwork remains a critical component of business success.Survey data
found that effective teamwork boosts overall performance: Participants engaged in collaborative tasks (or even laboring under the perception of collaboration) worked 64 percent longer than other employees working in isolation and reported greater task engagement. And as noted by Multichannel News,
while recent government reports on cybersecurity call for more “urgency” around infosec topics, they also highlight the need for improved teamwork to address emerging threats.Of course, it’s one thing to recognize the value of engaged, collaborative IT teams — it’s another to create this environment in-house, especially among IT knowledge workers.
Step 1: Cultivate “New Collar” Talent
The emerging gap
between available cybersecurity positions and the number of skilled IT pros to fill them is quickly becoming problematic for companies worldwide. With cyberthreats on the rise and highly-educated staff in high demand, it becomes difficult to recruit — much less retain — the industry’s best and brightest.One option for businesses looking to shore up their cybersecurity talent is a shift to “new collar”
recruiting. Coined by IBM CEO Ginni Rometty, the term refers to positions that prioritize skills and field experience over college degrees and certifications, allowing companies to more quickly identify and onboard staff with potential cybersecurity talent
. Embracing the new collar mindset also empowers organizations to identify employees in-house who have the soft skills necessary to be great team players coupled with cybersecurity interest — as infosec courses increasingly shift to online, on-demand formats, training new collar personnel in the necessary hard skills to hand cybersecurity roles is far less daunting.
Step 2: Empower Collaboration
If IT teams can’t communicate, they can’t function effectively. This is especially true for cybersecurity teams — in minutes, security incidents can escalate from minor issues to major problems. Relying on traditional tools like email and phone calls make it impossible for infosec staff to respond in real-time.The solution? Empower collaboration. As noted by Tech Radar
, tools that deliver on-demand video conferencing, instant messaging and allow teams to work within existing application frameworks are quickly becoming “the future of workplace communication.” Why? Because they let cybersecurity staff meet emerging threats at speed and in-situ rather than forcing them to abandon critical tasks to answer ringing landlines or type out hurried email responses.
Step 3: Deliver Career Development
What does your team’s skillset look like? Who has the best head for encryption? The best handle on cloud security or the most advanced understanding of new malware threats? What opportunities are available across your organization for infosec professionals to showcase their skills and advance their careers?For many companies, this kind of cybersecurity workforce development remains an afterthought: They might buy physical or digital catalogs listing available certifications — but these catalogs are rarely used and largely unconnected to anything happening in-house. The result? Cybersecurity teams quickly begin to stagnate as talented pros find no way to improve their skills or advance their careers.At Cybrary, we’ve created a better way: Cybrary for Business
. Leveraging data from more than two million infosec professionals, our training solutions provide hands-on virtual environments that help IT staff identify their strengths and determine potential career paths. The result? Cybersecurity frameworks that both align with your business objectives and provide access to ongoing professional development for skilled IT professionals — helping you retain top talent.
Step 4: Build Social Benefits
As noted by Forbes
, companies that embrace the need for effective team-building solutions see greater engagement and success. Why? Because the next generation of workers — tech and non-IT alike — now use corporate culture to evaluate potential employers. If teams are fractured, frustrated and have no rapport, recruiting younger staff becomes increasingly difficult, since many now prioritize workplace experience over more traditional benefits such as salary or time off.Bottom line? Teams that only exist during emergencies aren’t sustainable over time — organizations must deliver team building exercises that help boost social bonds and improve overall performance.
The “I” in Team
Cohesive, competent and certified IT security teams are now critical to business success. Want the best results? Look for talent where you don’t expect it and empower teams to collaborate on-demand. Don’t ignore the workplace benefits of social team building and remember there’s an “I” in every infosec team: Staff need career opportunities informed by business objectives and empowered by workforce development solutions to stay connected, engaged and productive.