Rethinking security hiring: How COVID-19 is changing talent acquisition

Staffing needs remain high, forcing companies to adapt their recruiting and onboarding practices — often for the better.

Recruitment  >  Hiring compass pointing toward talent
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Neither the pandemic nor the resulting economic downturn have slowed the cybersecurity workload at Raytheon Intelligence & Space.

As a result, recruiting and hiring has continued, with firm leaders adjusting their interviewing and onboarding processes to balance the ongoing need to bring on talent with social distancing and the other new realities of the day.

It’s an approach that has paid off, with Raytheon successfully staffing up despite the challenging times.

“We’re in a business that doesn’t get to pause; there wasn’t a thought from our team to shut this all down. In fact, our thoughts were: ‘How do we work around these obstacles and challenges?’ Then we came up with different ways to hire, to onboard, and to get people trained,” says John DeSimone, vice president for cybersecurity and special missions at Raytheon Intelligence & Space.

Raytheon’s situation speaks to the current cybersecurity job market.

Although some companies are laying off, competition for security talent remains fierce as many security executives aim to keep their current employees and add new ones to fill existing jobs as well as positions created to cope with the ramped-up security work that has come with the pandemic.

Hiring security workers has never been an easy task, and today’s extraordinary circumstances have further complicated the job, forcing companies like Raytheon to recruit, hire and onboard talent in new ways.

It’s a reality that has created challenges but also opportunities — some of which could permanently reshape the talent acquisition process.

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