8 ways to recruit for cyber-security jobs in Singapore

By Robert Half on 15 July 2022

Businesses are progressively using more technology, have more complex systems and store an ever-increasing amount of data.

This is providing more opportunities for cyber-attackers and can lead to data theft, economic espionage, fraud and even extortion.

However, dealing with cyber-security is only half of the battle. The other half is finding talent in this sector to fill urgent roles, which the city-state is struggling to address.

Consequently, candidates with cyber-security skills in Singapore are in high demand.

In this article, find out why cyber-security skills are in such demand in Singapore and how companies can address the challenge.

What is driving demand for cyber-security in Singapore?

No business is completely immune from cyber-crime. And as more companies continue to embrace digitisation and the storage of data (especially in the financial services sector), so will the number of cyber-attacks follow suite.

In 2021, Singapore experienced an 145% increase in cyber-security attacks year on year, with 1,123 organisations attacked a week on average according to Check Point Research. At the same time, 65% of Singaporean organisations experienced a ransomware attack - up from 25% in 2020 - while the ransom paid increased to US$1.16 million in 2021, six times more than the average US$187,5000 paid in 2020.

In response, under the Singaporean government’s Cyber-Security Bill, 29% of Singaporean CIOs plan to recruit permanent IT professionals, while 24% will be hiring for contract positions.

Other driving factors to consider include the Cyber-Security Agency of Singapore (CSA) and the Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center (FS-ISAC) working together to advance security threat intelligence, while conducting joint initiatives to protect Singapore’s financial services sector.

What is the recruitment challenge?

The current problem for Singapore is the availability of candidates in the sector. With cyber-security skills in such high demand and a talent pipeline in need of a surge, there simply isn’t enough local talent to fill urgent and available positions.

In short, hiring managers will find themselves competing against other businesses in a talent war. Moreover, 87% of CIOs surveyed by Robert Half say it is more challenging to source qualified IT professionals compare to five years ago, with current market conditions placing mounting pressure on companies when it comes to hiring.

How can you address the skill shortage?

Whilst 53% of Singaporean CIOs are looking to upskill their current staff in IT security, this alone will not address the recruitment demand for cyber-security talent.

If you are struggling to find talent to fill cyber-security positions, here are eight key tips to consider:

1. Evaluate recruitment needs
Evaluate your future cyber-security hiring needs now. Having a firm strategy in place can help you be better prepared for when you do need to hire a cyber-security expert.

2. Consider contract roles
If permanent cyber-security staff are not available, extend your recruitment opportunities to contractors who may be available to respond faster.

3. Offer a competitive package
People with cyber-security skills are in a very fortunate position as they can wait for the best job offer. To attract the very best talent for your business, consider offering a competitive salary, as well as other non-monetary benefits.

4. Streamline the recruitment process
Ensure your recruitment process is streamlined and effective. If you have a long, drawn-out or complicated recruitment process, your potential hires may decide to look elsewhere or get hired by your competitors.

5. Upskill staff
If you have an IT security skills gap in your business currently, and are struggling to find external talent, consider upskilling your existing staff with the necessary skills and qualifications.

6. Review your employee retention strategy
Once you have a cyber-security expert, you want to make sure they remain in your business. Review your retention strategy and put steps in place to minimise employee turnover in the future. This is especially important in sectors such as cyber-security where it may be more costly to recruit new talent than retain current staff.

7. Promote your corporate brand
In such a competitive job market, don’t expect employees to just come to you. Attract top talent by promoting your corporate brand effectively and showcasing that you offer a dynamic workplace and a rewarding career.

8. Consult a professional recruitment company
If you’re struggling to find someone with the necessary cyber-security skills, contact Robert Half today for a recruitment solution.

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