There are several significant cybersecurity trends in the market, including negative unemployment, companies’ reaction to the current job market, and impending consolidations. All of these trends have an impact on professionals working in the field, and on companies that need them. The trends are also impacting executive recruitment in the space. Knowledge is power so, it’s a good time to dive in and explore the implications of these trends.
One of the most visible trends in the cybersecurity market is negative unemployment. Like in many segments of the tech field, there are more job vacancies than there are people to fill them. Supply and demand dictates that when there are more open positions than there are candidates, the cost of employees will go up. Wages are expected to rise throughout the IT and technology industry, with most roles averaging a 2% increase. However, cybersecurity specialists are in particularly high demand. According to the Robert Walters 2018 Salary Survey, salaries for these positions could increase as much as 7% this year.
How Companies are Reacting
It will be difficult to predict how companies will react to this negative unemployment trend. Some companies might recognize the issue immediately and adjust hiring strategies accordingly. Other organizations could struggle to come to terms with the issue. If companies do not adjust hiring strategies, recruiting qualified cybersecurity professionals will be difficult. Security firms might also find their talent is being poached by the competition.
Another trend we expect to see is consolidation. Customers and candidates increasingly want security vendors that can provide a suite of solutions, rather than companies that only provide a single solution. Therefore, you can expect the demand for these types of companies to rise, while innovative startups that have been bringing point solutions (e.g. network, end point, orchestration, cloud, mobile) to market will have a tougher time competing. This creates a gap in the market.
Point Products vs. a Suite of Solutions
The trend toward consolidation should not come as too much of a surprise; businesses of all sizes face a variety of security issues and want to be prepared. If companies want the protection that they need, there are two choices: purchasing multiple singe solutions or working with a consolidated vendor that provides comprehensive security solutions. To have a variety of single solutions businesses need to manage multiple vendors. This could end up being more expensive, yet less convenient. Consolidation is the easier way to go.
Mergers & Acquisitions
You can also expect to see an increase in mergers and acquisitions. You already see established vendors such as Palo Alto Networks and Symantec acquiring smaller startups. Startups are going to struggle if they focus on point products which have simply become too hard to sell. These companies will also experience more turnover as M&A activity will create redundancy.
Consolidation will require adjusting the expectations of hiring managers, particularly when reviewing resumes that indicate job-hopping. Because of the high turnover of point product startups, risk-inclined talent is often forced to make changes. This leaves gaps in their resumes or creates a perception that they cannot hold a job. However, it is important to realize that risk-inclined candidates often have no choice as timing of exits are often unpredictable.
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