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Delivering Effective Cyber Security Requires the Right People



 

Richard Harragan

Security Consultant at i-confidential





 

The importance of trusted people who can deliver for you has never been clearer in a cyber threat landscape that constantly grows and evolves.


According to a 2022 cyber security labour market report from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, demand for cyber security professionals in the UK shot up 58% from 2020 to 2021. The report estimates a total UK cyber workforce gap – the annual shortfall in cyber security personnel – of c.14,100.


In essence, the industry needs a lot of people, and they need to be good at what they do.


Nicola Huskie, i-confidential’s Head of Talent Acquisition, has previously written about how organisations can go about trying to meet their cyber security resourcing challenges. One of her key statements is, “Whether you’re looking for one person or an entire team, you want to know they’re coming from a credible, trusted source."


i-confidential is an employee-owned company. We all have a personal stake in building lasting relationships with our clients. We therefore place a premium on hiring permanent employees and contract staff that live and breathe our company values.


It's not just about skills and experience

In my 11 years working as a security consultant and project manager for many of i-confidential’s clients, I have witnessed a variety of styles and approaches to delivery. Although ultimately clients are seeking success, I strongly believe that embracing the company’s core values helps achieve this.


“We will cover your back” is a phrase we often use with our clients, and it's something I’m highly committed to. I know both from first-hand experience, and from working alongside my colleagues, that it makes a big difference. We demonstrate this through delivering high-quality work, but also by being honest. That’s not always easy, but sugar coating the challenge of addressing complex cyber threats only hinders our ability to help clients overcome them.


I recently completed a two-year placement for a client that involved project deliveries across multiple areas. I always ask for feedback on my performance, ensuring I retain and repeat the positive elements and continue to improve in development areas. In this case, the feedback I received about myself and other colleagues confirmed that i-confidential’s core values are still very much at the heart of what we do and underpin our successful approach.


Many of us will have been involved in hiring and working with suppliers, and dealing with a range of characteristics and styles. Your mind always drifts back to your positive experiences, especially with organisations who have a habit of providing likeminded people with a track record of successful delivery.


Tools, standards, and processes are all important, but it’s people who will determine success or failure, whether the overall experience feels positive, and if it’s one you might wish to repeat in the future.

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