If you work in the information security industry go ahead and give yourself a pat on the back. In 2012 information security professionals enjoyed one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics. In my line of work I often come across IT and various other industry professionals conveying a desire to get into information security but rarely hear of anyone looking to get out.
A typical recruiter can assist in your job search when you’re unemployed or actively looking for a new position. They have their ear to the ground and can be a great resource. They know who is hiring, how to position you and can give interview and resume advice. But you are in demand. You don’t need to use a recruiter, right?
You are partially correct. You do not need to use a recruiter in the traditional sense. After all, A-list movie stars and elite athletes do not need someone to help them find work or a team who will take them. What they do need, however, is someone to represent them in the marketplace. When the demand is high and the supply is low you gain leverage. You can, and should, use your leverage and an InfoSec-focused recruiter can help you do that.
First, find the right recruiter: one who focuses on InfoSec. An InfoSec recruiter works quite a bit differently than the typical recruiter. Think of your recruiter more like a talent agent. Here are a few tips.
- Have a wish list: If you know of a company you would love to work for but they are not hiring, ask us to use our connections to introduce you to the right people.
- Build a relationship with your recruiter: The better we know you the better we can represent you.
- Set clear expectations: Give us your shortlist of what you want; better commute, more money, more impactful role, larger/smaller company, etc. This way we do not bother you with opportunities that are of no interest to you.
- Be patient (and don’t settle): Your dream job that pays 20% more and is in your backyard may not be available right now. Do not expect things to happen overnight.
- Maintain open lines of communication: Let us know if you have other opportunities you are pursuing. You do not need to give specifics but provide a timeline so we can manage other opportunities for you competitively and give you options.
When the market is this hot consider yourself a talent with options and develop relationships with talented recruiters who understand the infosec space. The right recruiters will be best positioned to help you maximize your opportunities.
Are you taking advantage of recruiters to help you find your next position? How has a recruiter helped you realize your “dream” job in infosec? Feel free to share your stories in the comments section below.