When I was the Cyber Veteran Program Manager for Maryland State’s Department of Business and Economic Development, I helped Veterans launch business and careers within cybersecurity. My first week on the job, I was inundated with calls/emails from Veterans with cybersecurity experience seeking assistance to get hired. On the flip side, employers also requested that I connect them with military members with cybersecurity experience. To my surprise, very few Veterans that I connected with employers were interviewed and disappointingly, none got hired! It didn’t make sense. There was and still is a huge gap between the number of cyber jobs and the amount of qualified talent to fill those jobs. Before I share the problems that I discovered here's some contextual facts...
Cyber warriors wage war using information technology. They may attack computers or information systems through hacking or other related strategies, or defend them from their counterparts. Cyber warriors also may find better ways to secure a system by finding vulnerabilities through hacking and other means and closing those vulnerabilities before other hackers find and exploit them. – Techopedia.
Red Team - Blue Team:
85 percent of all military cyber operations are being executed by the Enlisted workforce, so we’ll be exploring the transition issues that they face. The DoD Components reported a total of 163,144 military and civilian personnel within the cyber operations workforce in FY09. The majority of these individuals, 145,437 (almost 89 percent), were engaged in operations and maintenance (O&M) functions. This equates to more than 5 percent of the DoD workforce. The DoD is the largest single employer of IT/Cybersecurity talent within the Federal Government, thus often assumes a leading role in the identification and development of initiatives impacting the human capital management and professional development for the IT/Cybersecurity community.
“Cyber warriors are highly trained individuals who engage in offensive operations” - General Keith Alexander (Ret.), Commander of U.S. CyberCom (2010 - 2014)
Problems Military Cyber Warriors (MCW) Face:
Ex: Chart below illustrates the Air Force’s Cyber Systems Operations Career Field Education and Training Plan (CFETP) – difficult for both military member and civilian employer to easily translate.
A CareerBuilder survey found that 41 percent of employers say it is difficult to decipher how military experience fits into civilian positions. 27 percent of employers feel that Veterans don't always market their military experience. Now consider the fact that MCW's work in highly classified job roles making it even more difficult to share their experience on a resume or interview.
"Employers recognize the unique value military experience can bring, but they don't always understand how military skills fit into corporate America," says Brent Rasmussen, president of CareerBuilder North America. "Veterans will need to clearly make that connection in their résumé, cover letter and job interviews as they enter this new chapter of their careers." - Kaitlin Madden, CareerBuilder.com
Stats to consider:
CWN’s Mission: Fill 100 cybersecurity jobs with Military Cyber Warriors – Skills needed to fill Gap:
Transitioning Military/Veteran Create your FREE profile today!