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Conrad & Ryan Discuss Retention in Cyber

10 November 2019

Hear what our Board Advisor and Ex Deputy Director of GCHQ Conrad Prince has to say on the topic of retention as he discusses the hot topic with Ryan Virani. 

Conrad: Ryan, you are an expert in this field and you have been working for a long time in the area of Cyber Talent. What's your take on the best way to go about identifying the right talent that we need in our companies today? 

Ryan: There are a couple of key areas that people need to look at. The first is understanding what the business needs are and what the market landscape actually looks like for talent out there. There is a lot of people who spend a vast amount of time looking for people who don't actually exist and that is just purely down to lack of understanding of the market and willingness to develop people in those areas. 

So I feel the biggest challenges for us as an industry, in terms of getting the right people in the right roles, is understanding the people that are already out there and working in the sector currently. 

Ryan: Conrad, as far as your experience goes, you've worked for some very high profile businesses in the past. What was it that kept you at those specific organisations? 

Conrad: The retention point is key. There is a great motivation around the mission in cyber. It's a fascinating and exciting mission and it's about looking at threats as there are people and countries out there who want to do us harm- whether we work in the public or private sector. And there is a great risk that we can just be caught up in cyber attacks even if they weren't targeted at us- so defending our organisation and our country from those threats is a really motivating thing. So that sense of mission can be really good and is something we should harness when it comes to retention. 

Also investing in people and investing in career paths is important. We need to do more work around looking at cyber security career paths and how people can stay within this profession and feel like they are progressing over time. Fundamentally it is a great place to be, it's exciting, its fascinating work, there are lots of different dimensions to it and those things are very motivating and the indsutry needs to capitalise on them.