Security Tops List of Vital Skills, Certifications

 
 
By Gina Roos  |  Posted 2015-05-19 Email
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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    Security Tops List of Vital Skills, Certifications
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    Security Tops List of Vital Skills, Certifications

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    Skills in Demand
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    Skills in Demand

    53% of IT decision-makers (ITDMs) report that IT security tops the list of skills needed in 2015, followed by network operations (35%), cloud computing (35%), IT architecture (33%), network engineering (30%) and systems operations (30%).
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    Big Money for Security Skills
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    Big Money for Security Skills

    Security certifications captured the top three salaries. Security salaries range from $79,330 (with CompTIA Security+ certification) to $119,000+ (for ISACA's Certified in Risk and CRISC (Certified in Risk and Information Systems Control) certifications).
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    Looking for Cloud Specialists
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    Looking for Cloud Specialists

    One out of five ITDM respondents report challenges finding skilled employees for cloud initiatives. This means skills in cloud migration, integration and developer knowledge of APIs.
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    Progress in Cloud Adoption
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    Progress in Cloud Adoption

    Two-thirds of ITDMs have at least begun the evaluation process, with 36% at either the adoption or adaptation stages. 36% are at the awareness and interest stages.
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    Skills Gaps
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    Skills Gaps

    36% of ITDMs report "measurable" technical skill gaps in their IT groups. 33% have concerns over the next two years. 33% said they have the skills they need today and over the next 12 to 24 months.
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    Business Impact
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    Business Impact

    82% of respondents who reported skills gaps said it has caused increased employee stress levels, followed by difficulty meeting quality objectives (61%), delayed hardware and software deployments (61%), and delays in new product and service development (56%).
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    Lack of Training
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    Lack of Training

    The biggest reason for a skills shortage is not enough investment in training to develop the skills needed, according to 47% of respondents at companies with more than 500 employees, 58% at companies with 100 to 500 employees, 51% of firms with 11 to 99 employees, and 50% at firms with more than 10 employees.
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    Slow Salary Growth
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    Slow Salary Growth

    The average salary for IT professionals is $88,335, up 1% from 2014, while the average salary for business professionals increased 7% to $101,790.
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    Higher Compensation
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    Higher Compensation

    However, 75% of respondents reported a raise—the highest since 80% in the study's inaugural year—and 63% reported receiving a bonus, the highest percentage ever reported for the study.
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    Staying Current
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    Staying Current

    77% of IT professionals, excluding ITDMs, took some form of professional training in the prior year with IT security professionals (90%) leading the way.
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    In Pursuit of Certifications
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    In Pursuit of Certifications

    Three out of four IT respondents earned at least one certification in the last five years. Of this group, 45% earned one certification in the last year.
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    Top Certifications
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    Top Certifications

    More than 38% of IT respondents hold one or more CompTIA certifications, mostly considered foundational programs, with an overall average of two. Other top certifications come from Microsoft, Cisco, and Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) and IT Service Management (ITSM).
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    Highest Paying Certifications
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    Highest Paying Certifications

    Certifications have a positive impact on salaries. The top five highest paying certifications are Certified in Risk and Information Systems Control (CRISC), Computer Science and Information Management (CSIM), Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CSISSP ), Project Management Professional (PMP) and Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA).
 

If you have IT security skills, you're in luck. IT security tops the list of skills many businesses report that they need this year, followed by cloud computing and network operations, according to a report from Global Knowledge and Windows IT Pro. The other good news—IT security specialists also garner some of the highest salaries. The survey, based on responses from more than 11,000 IT and business professionals in North America, reveals that four out of the top 10 highest paying certifications are for security skills. The 2015 IT Skills and Salary Report also finds that a skills gap is creating big challenges at companies, resulting in increased employee stress levels, difficulty meeting quality objectives, delayed hardware and software deployments, and delays in new product or service development. Overall, the salaries of IT professionals have only increased by 1 percent from 2014. However, the percentages of respondents reporting a raise and receiving bonuses are the highest in eight years. When it comes to salaries, certifications matter. Find out which are the highest paying certifications and other key takeaways from the salary report.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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