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  • Donald E Hester

Federal Cybersecurity Wage Gap

Federal Building

The Federal Government has had a long-term problem recruiting and keeping cyber security talent. One problem has been the wage gap between private sector jobs and the government pay scale. They just don’t compare, and sometimes you can get paid double working in the private sector. Another problem is recruiting. The methods government agencies use to recruit, like, seem to be ineffective. Often applicants submit for positions and never hear back, often they wonder if their resume even made it to the hiring agency. If people continue to get no feedback, they will stop using sites like and the agencies are missing out on talent.

These reasons have kept me from a Federal job. In addition to the seemingly endless bureaucracy and red tape that makes you feeling as if you are just beating your head against a wall. Having worked as a contractor for the Fed, I can say I wanted to make a difference but found that they system favors not rocking the boat and checking boxes. For me, job satisfaction is making a tangible difference, and if I feel like my time is wasted, I won’t want to work there.

One change is coming around the corner. The Federal Government is starting some test pay incentives to gain and keep cybersecurity professionals. Additional bonuses are one of the new ways of dealing with the wage gap between the Federal Government and the private sector. This means the need to work on recruiting and in my mind the bureaucratic red tape issues.

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