Career Notes

Yesterday I attended a kickoff meeting highlighting Windstream’s new 10,000 square foot Franklin, TN data center. I’m sure my friends at Nexus, Peak 10 and other sites in our area have their own plans for expansion. This trend is highlighting big changes in our industry, in which some jobs and skills will be added and some eliminated. The question is which will be which. Teaching and advising students in our MS Security program, I am always listening for any sounds of new or changed careers, especially in the security area.

Last month, I attended an interesting talk by Marc Wong of Paladin, who kindly provided a presentation to me. The subject was talent management, more specifically, the 15 hottest IT jobs. I will add my interpretations to his numbers; you may have different views, but here goes.

You probably do not want to specialize in “network and server administration” or “database development and administration”, unless you know someone at the above mentioned firms.

  1. Software development, both mobile and otherwise, continues to be the coin of the realm. Assuring the security of those apps will be a continuing challenge and require attention.
  2. Functions related to “systems” have incredible demand. Businesses need working systems, not technologies. These roles include: “software systems”, “enterprise architect”, and “systems analysis”. Systems are king. On the security side, businesses need working security for their systems, not just secure technology.
  3. Getting things done is still important; the demand for PM’s is 200%+ that of supply! That’s good news. A combination of security background and PM skills might be in more demand.
  4. On the pure security side, huge demand still exists for “network security” and also for “information assurance”, which I interpret to be more aligned with security management.

I always encourage people to learn at least two skills. You don’t want your skills to be the subject of any “job description” but your own.


Frederick Scholl, PhD, CISSP, CISM, CHP, ITIL
Visiting Professor, Lipscomb University