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Registered Apprenticeship Is a Proven Solution to the Cybersecurity Talent Shortage

There are approximately 700,000 cybersecurity roles open in America. It’s no wonder this country faces a national security challenge — a challenge that “must be tackled aggressively,” according to the White House. Cybersecurity is a critical field; its purpose is to protect crucial computer systems and sensitive information from being compromised in the event of unauthorized access or attack. 

Cybersecurity impacts businesses of all sizes, including small businesses. In fact, about half of all cyberattacks target small businesses, and 68% of small businesses have experienced a cyberattack in the last 12 months. Additionally, the cost of a cyber attack can be astronomical — $3.92 million on average for a large company, IBM’s 2019 Cost of a Data Breach Report found. A data breach can cost a small business anywhere from  $120,000 to $1.24 million, on average.

Cybersecurity workforce challenges impact productivity and profitability 

Cybersecurity is vital to the United States’ economic competitiveness. The challenge? Significant talent shortages are slowing employers’ efforts to expand, innovate, and excel. Among these challenges:

  • Developing talent that can keep pace with the latest technology advances and rapidly escalating cyber threats
  • Finding and hiring a more diverse workforce
  • Retaining skilled workers
  • Providing employer-customized training

These workforce challenges hinder employer productivity and profitability. The good news? There is a solution to address these talent challenges: Registered Apprenticeship. Registered Apprenticeship is a proven and industry-driven workforce development model that can provide a consistent talent pipeline into your organization.

Registered Apprenticeship benefits employers and workers
Employers in the cybersecurity field across the U.S. and among its global competitors use Registered Apprenticeship to recruit, train, and retain workers with the right skills. Employers who opt to leverage Registered Apprenticeship to solve for the cybersecurity skills shortage are in good company. There are currently 714 registered apprenticeship programs and 42,260 apprentices in cybersecurity-related occupations. Since Jan. 20, 2021, 199 new programs have been created — a 28% increase, according to the Department of Labor (DOL).

Registered Apprenticeship has been the most effective training model for enhancing companies’ performance and competitiveness, also according to the DOL. It is industry-driven, and a high-quality career pathway that employers can tap into to develop and prepare their future workforce. Individuals can obtain paid work experience, receive progressive wage increases, classroom instruction, and a portable, nationally-recognized credential. 

Organizations that hire cybersecurity and related IT employees realize a number of benefits from implementing Registered Apprenticeship programs. Through apprenticeship, organizations will:

  • Vet workers with the right aptitude and attitude to instill the company’s culture
  • Recruit and develop a diverse and highly skilled workforce
  • Improve productivity, profitability, and the company’s bottom line
  • Reduce turnover, improve loyalty, and retain top talent
  • Demonstrate investment in the community
  • Gain access to federal, state, and local support for your program through apprenticeship, workforce, and education systems

Cybersecurity sprint encourages employers to explore Registered Apprenticeship
In July, the White House, DOL, and the U.S. Department of Commerce announced a 120-Day Cybersecurity Apprenticeship Sprint to promote the Registered Apprenticeship model as a solution for numerous industries to develop and train a skilled and diverse cybersecurity workforce. Apprenti was identified as one of three key organizations to participate in the Sprint.

The Cybersecurity Apprenticeship Sprint is a national campaign to encourage employers, industry associations, labor unions, and training providers to explore Registered Apprenticeship as a recruitment, training, and retention strategy.

The Sprint’s goals include:

  • Increase awareness of current successful cybersecurity-related Registered Apprenticeship programs, partnerships, and initiatives and how they’re helping the industry educate and train a skilled cybersecurity workforce to reduce cybersecurity risk.
  • Advance diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) across cybersecurity occupations through Registered Apprenticeship, especially for historically underrepresented populations such as women and communities of color.
  • Connect career seekers to cybersecurity apprenticeship opportunities.

The sprint will continue until National Apprenticeship Week, Nov. 14-20, 2022.

Apprenti can help bridge the talent gap
Apprenti is a national leader in registered apprenticeship. It offers a registered technology apprenticeship that helps adults launch a successful technology career. Apprenti is open to all job seekers but specifically focuses on supporting women, people of color, Veterans, people with disabilities, and other underrepresented groups to gain access to careers in tech.

Apprenti occupations in cybersecurity include Cybersecurity Analyst, Network Security Admin, Cloud Operations Specialist, and more.

October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month. There’s no better time to evaluate your cybersecurity workforce and make sure you’re prepared in the event of a breach or attack on your company. Learn more about partnering with Apprenti to tap into Registered Apprenticeship as a viable pathway to recruit, train, and retain diverse cybersecurity talent.

And check out the WTIA Economic Impact Dashboard for more detailed information on the tech industry’s impact on the U.S. economy, and to view workforce data on cybersecurity and other roles across the country.


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