The security career landscape shifts each year, and 2023 will be no exception. The state of the global economy is already affecting many organizations that hire security professionals. Restructuring is underway and will almost certainly impact one or more aspects of your job.
Here are some of the top security career challenges you will face in the new year together, along with some ideas of how to manage and conquer them.
Return to the office vs. remote work
A large number of security jobs are hands-on, and that makes remote work impractical to begin with. However, those in management positions may have had the opportunity to work either remotely or in a hybrid setting in the past few years.
As companies continue to bring more of their teams back into office workspaces, new challenges will exist for security, safety and risk management practitioners. In addition to managing your own return to the office, you will likely find yourself responsible for securing assets and individuals that are substantially more geographically dispersed than in the past.
Return to in-person interviewing.
It is time to polish up your face-to-face communication skills. While companies continue to use conference-call type interviews for initial phases, the 2022 shifts in travel mean you will likely be invited to meet potential employers in person. Your at-home dresswear may need a refresh even if office dress codes are more relaxed than pre-COVID levels.
Potentially seismic shifts in home and work-life balances
Personal stressors are gaining increased attention in the workplace as people return to onsite work. It can be a struggle to construct what the new normal is in your personal work/home life balance. The same will be true for your colleagues. Pay attention to your mental and physical wellbeing this year to better insulate against disruptive changes.
Less security jobs are available
Companies continue to aggressively compete for certain security specialty areas, such as technical and clearance roles. Others are inundated with candidates and have begun to pull back on hiring incentives such as sign-on bonuses. The number of positions will continue to be in flux as financial and other instabilities affect organizations. If you are thinking of making a career change this year, start your search now and prepare for it to take longer than you might normally expect.
Streamed departments with additional responsibilities previously not under the same umbrella
As companies explore their cost-cutting options, some of them are merging functions together in sometimes unusual combinations. Security practitioners may not have the skillsets to transition into one or more of these new areas. If your job includes aspects you are interested in but not necessarily proficient in, explore education options to keep current on your evolving portfolio of responsibilities.
The potential to be downsized
This goes hand in hand with companies cutting back on or merging functions. Evaluate your organization and assess if your position could be targeted as part of a layoff event. Consider other responsibilities you can take on that might make you an agile and valuable asset in a restructuring situation.
Organizations are becoming more selective
The volume of candidates who apply for our recruitment projects is on the rise. Many have the potential to excel in a job. However, with a larger pool of candidates to select from, companies are increasingly focused on making the best hire in keeping with their corporate mission. Ask yourself what is needed for you to stand out from other potential applicants. Have a strategy in place that highlights your uniqueness and best positions you as the ideal candidate for the job.
Challenges to the success of your security career are a constant over your working lifetime. This year has the potential to present some unique hurdles, and planning ahead for them is a sound strategy.