Security Industry Association unveils plan to Grow Security Talent Pipeline

Security Industry Association unveils plan to Grow Security Talent Pipeline
The Security Industry Association (SIA) unveiled a comprehensive plan to assist its members to “Grow the Security Talent Pipeline.” By grouping resources for workforce development under one umbrella plan, SIA intends to augment its capabilities to help security companies—manufacturers, integrators, service providers, and others—to hire qualified talent.

“When SIA members provide feedback on their challenges, they consistently rank identifying and hiring qualified personnel as a top concern,” said SIA CEO Don Erickson. “SIA has been working on a number of separate initiatives to help companies tackle that challenge, and now SIA has pulled them together in a coordinated effort to grow the pipeline for security talent. SIA will continue to add to these efforts going forward.”

The following elements fall under the comprehensive plan to Grow the Security Talent Pipeline.

Working with Community Colleges. In 2016, SIA partnered with Mercer County Community College (MCCC) to develop a degree program featuring project management, sales, product technology and security integration classroom and lab instruction. SIA will license the degree program, Systems Technology Associate in Applied Science Degree in Security Systems and Technologies, and its related curriculum to community colleges nationwide.

Creating the new SIA Academic Membership category for students and faculty. SIA created Academic Memberships for students to educate them about the security industry and to network with potential employers. SIA plans to target trade, technical and community college and engineering program students as potential members. Meanwhile, SIA Academic Memberships for faculty help professors connect directly with industry to stay atop trends and align educational requirements with future employers’ needs. Faculty also can take advantage of options for publication and networking.

Engaging with ASIS in a Career Mapping Project. SIA has been working in collaboration with ASIS International on a comprehensive career mapping project that will identify career pathways and which will cover all aspects of the security industry—from security practitioner and consulting roles to roles at security manufacturers and systems integrators. The final product is expected to be available at the beginning of 2018. SIA members have been instrumental in contributing on the advisory board and with surveys and interviews.

Developing a Security Industry Careers Guide. To help make students and others aware of employment opportunities within the security industry, SIA has produced a career opportunities guide to typical industry employment positions at security systems integrators and security solutions manufacturers.

Connecting Young Professionals with SIA RISE. SIA RISE is a networking group that fosters the careers of young professionals in the security industry. The group is available to all young professionals, under 40, or individuals who have been in the security industry for less than two years, whose company is a member of SIA. RISE launched a scholarship program with funds may be used for a variety of courses, including curriculum related to information technology or cybersecurity.

Advocating for Federal STEM Programs. Business leaders across the country are concerned over the current and upcoming workforce’s lack of requisite qualifications to address market trends, and majority of business leaders attribute the skills gap to poor prioritization of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) curriculum. SIA will advocate for government policies that invest in STEM curriculum, reauthorize financial grants enabling students to pursue higher education and incentivize companies that adopt internal apprenticeship programs developing the future workforce.

Leveraging U.S. Chamber Foundation Resources. SIA intends to leverage the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s expertise and resources to promote the security industry through its Foundation Education and Workforce Center and its Hiring our Heroes Program, aimed at helping our nation’s veterans transition to new careers.
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