Looking for another rehashing of a perceived problem?
HR professionals can't fix a problem they're unwilling to be honest about. But a few honest ones talk to me. And I tell it like it is, as the first step to diagnosing and solving complex problems.
So here's the free version of what ethical HR execs and CxOs who go on to quietly fix things get from me:
Compelling evidence that there is in fact NO cyber skills shortage, like my initial three, was published long before the Forrester report on which the above feature is based, was released.
First solution is problem acknowledgment: 3-Step Guide To Fixing The 'Talent Shortage' Myth:For those who'd rather read on than click/tap now, the point is not that there isn't a skills gap problem. Instead, the argument is that core issues (like #5 below) are self-inflicted.
But start with the above first step. And if you don't like it, remember:
The HR industry is well-known for its ubiquitous CV/resumé, cover letter, job interview and other career advice content.
In this case, it's more than prudent to take constructive advice. Unless you're a fan consequential cyber attacks, — followed by terminations, customer defections, stock downgrades, brand reputational damage, or worse, the bankruptcy or death of your business.
U.S. presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg recently acknowledged: “Systemic racism is a white problem.” But at a time when Google is beset by ethical issues, sexual harassment, hate speech, and employee defections and other internal friction, it pays to appreciate how a lack of cognitive diversity, genuine diversity, as well as adulteration of the “gender gap” argument won't help you long-term.
But no matter what your filter bubble, conferences you attend, or network suggests, everything is not business. Those who treat life as such also tend to get lost in the overlap between HR and recruiting functions. So, rather than solving the above 2, they become fixated on the current megatrends of AI and automation, to feed their corporate greed, at the expense of ethical concerns.Apart from the Harvard research above (click/tap), most of the bad to worst hiring decisions, including consequences like small-scale to headline grabbing data breach or egregious insider threat incidents, as well as questionable business decisions involving collaborations with repressive regimes to worsen their stranglehold on helpless civilians among other atrocities, are being led by unscrupulous HR firms, vendors, CxOs and personnel profiting from the peddling of the myth of the skills gap, even as they provide technical assistance.
Not surprisingly, IBM is right up there with the likes of Google:And while I personally like many of these firms, Google's own employee civil war is reminder that people build systems, and shape cultures. That, consummate professionals who happen to be highly competent security technoIogists ARE admittedly an endangered species.
However, that, plus corporate greed is no excuse for unscrupulous CxOs and recruiters to myopically hire unscrupulous talent, with HR Tech vendors, cybersecurity certificates and training 'schools'/pretenders as mere strategic sales components of a profit-making machine that doesn't actually deliver despite millions and billions spent on IT security infrastructure.
If you want to bridge the so-called skills gap, actually READ through the solutions. And as you implement them, you'll have better luck attracting and retaining quality talent, plus buy-in. Or pay professionals like myself to do it meticulously for you, rather than going online looking to avoid divergent views, as there are companies implementing my solutions. And you may be relieved to find in many cases, that their corporate culture isn't perfect either.In one tweet featuring hashtags like “#skillsgap #cyberskills” which only reinforce the myth, I was responded to a 'skills gap' believer who had just retweeted my How Small Businesses Can Beat Hackers piece.
As usual, the below (#5) must have made made her uncomfortable, because in most cases, as with #3 and 4 above, these are bottom line-driven recruiters, HR execs and CxOs committing the cardinal mistake of not engaging, just when precisely that will correct their blindsidedness.
Finally, for those of us who know a thing or two about how the (Mainland) Chinese and perhaps coincidentally, oil-rich Middle Eastern nations headed by repressive regimes hire, stinginess and prohibitive digital friction in the application process, by comparison, is a major self-inflicted wound. Not just in U.S. recruitment but any organization making their process long and data intensive.
A needless, self-inflicted error that leaves the organization in question at a strategic disadvantage; then parroting the skills gap line. Why would a clearheaded organization — including government agencies, the worst offenders — do what smart organizations globally don't? Inept management.Friction + Stinginess = Turnoff.
All the employer branding and candidate experience lip service won't attract the very talent you seek — some of them, highly trainable and much better than your current upskilling pool — if you or your client offer no Visa Sponsorship and/or Relocation Assistance whatsoever.
Stinginess, as well as data-greedy, frequently hacked portals or Applicant Tracking Systems (click/tap above) will never fill your “talent gap” for a whole lot of practical reasons that organizations staffed by highly imaginative people have no problems comprehending.
The one factor that attracts the largest, most trainable pool is money and flexibility.
Money literally talks in that, whereas a reasonable candidate may understand legal restrictions on hiring for example foreign-based talent, one of my own worst career moves was facilitated by how easy the client, on top of sponsoring my visa, made my entire relocation. From Chinese to African consulting, I've experienced it. And it is why skills gap whiners focused on local hire get no sympathy.Whatever the validity of the above — countries supposedly “best at attracting and nurturing talented workers” — as an American who happens to be black, I have found Canada and even the U.S. lacking when abroad, the stringency of EU employment regulation notwithstanding.
Further, applicants with options don't want their time wasted by greedy and frequently hacked HR Tech that leak sensitive data forcing them to replicate data already on their CV/resumé while recruiters forget that hiring is a two-way street.
As with #3 above, cynical and stubborn HR execs, recruiters benefiting from the status quo, and clueless CxOs who wrongly assume risk intelligence translates to risk maturity may not want to hear the above. Particularly from a a renowned Artificial Intelligence expert who makes HR professionals uncomfortable (click/tap spider man image above), and with automation, advanced manufacturing/RPA, AI, and the shift to e-commerce dramatically changing the very nature and future of work.
But if serious about fixing your “skills gap” problem, act on the foregoing. Because, needless to say, cyber attacks will worsen, you or your business partners will likely be breached many times over, and those not bankrupted or forced to close shop as a result will find this self-inflicted problem more worthy of one's best focus than talk about the future of work. Albeit in the interim, walking and chewing gum simultaneously is recommended, as is the resource for bursting one's filter bubble, below.
Breakthrough Ideas for August 2019 (1 of 2)