We’re delighted to announce the launch of Focus on Security, the dedicated cybersecurity recruitment arm of the Focus Cloud Group, which will address recruitment challenges specific to the sector by drawing on the expertise of Jamal Elmellas.
The security sector has seen unprecedented demand for talent during the pandemic, exacerbating the existing skills shortage. Pressures such as shifting working patterns leading to hybrid working and the need for contractors to comply with IR35 regulations, mean recruitment drives need to be highly targeted. As a qualified CLAS consultant with over 19 years’ experience in the security space, Jamal has a unique understanding of the soft and hard skills, theoretical and practical knowledge required to fulfil specific roles.
Demand for cybersecurity talent has risen sharply over the past two years. The number of IT vacancies increased by 55% during Q1 2020 and 22% in Q2 2021 according to the Office for National Statistics, while LinkedIn currently has over 22,500 vacancies listed in the UK. Moreover, a report published by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) in March 2021 found the market needs to attract 17,500 cybersecurity professionals a year just to keep up with demand – yet only 7,500 are entering the profession.
As a result, businesses are struggling to fill the available roles, leaving 61% of cybersecurity teams understaffed, according to ISACA’s State of Cybersecurity 2021 report, with half saying they did not believe candidates were well qualified. There’s also evidence of conflict internally, with the survey revealing only 31% thought the HR team understood the hiring needs of the security team. But the recruitment industry itself is also a contributing factor with the DCMS report claiming unsuitable recruitment methods are stopping some candidates from finding roles.
“Many of the top performers in the cybersecurity space got there via unconventional career paths but they had the core skills needed to excel in the industry. We recognise that talent and are able to assess suitability based upon our experience in the industry. By looking holistically at candidates and the needs of the security team we can significantly improve the calibre of the candidates being put forward,” says Jamal Elmellas, Chief Operating Officer for Focus on Security.
“I’m thrilled to announce the launch of Focus on Security run by cybersecurity professionals for cybersecurity professionals,” added Lloyd Gordon, CEO, Focus on Cloud Group. “The agency is headed up by Jamal who is a respected cybersecurity consultant and entrepreneur whose previous roles within the field include Principal Security Consultant and Founder at Data Barrier and CTO and Founding Partner at Auriga Consulting, now part of Cyberfort Group. He’s passionate about the industry and will be heading up a team where each of the consultants specialises in a specific security niche, making them experts in the field.”
The launch of the cybersecurity agency follows that of Focus on LifeScience (January 2021), Focus on ServiceNow (November 2020), Focus on Salesforce (August 2020), Focus on SAP (March 2020) and Focus on Cloud (2015).