Workforce

White House accelerates cyber hiring

The federal government hired 3,000 cybersecurity and IT workers during the first six months of fiscal 2016, and hopes to make an additional 3,500 new hires by January 2017.

The hiring spree is part of the Cybersecurity National Action Plan, a $19 billion effort that includes the proposed $3.1 billion IT modernization revolving fund. While pieces of the effort are stalled in Congress, the White House is pushing ahead with the workforce piece of the strategy, according to a July 12 White House blog post.

The governmentwide recruitment effort includes the use of special pay authorities, the addition of a cybersecurity cadre to the Presidential Management Fellows program and increased outreach to diversify the cybersecurity and IT workforce. Officials hope to improve recruitment and training and to identify workforce needs by dividing the cyber field into 31 specialty areas. The plan also includes a single program to orient new cyber workers to the government workforce, with an eye toward improving information sharing and career advancement opportunities.

The White House is also hoping for $62 million in funding for cybersecurity education.

The blog post from Office of Management and Budget Director Shaun Donovan, Office of Personnel Management Acting Director Beth Cobert, White House cyber coordinator Michael Daniel and federal CIO Tony Scott does not, however, include one piece of long-awaited cyber workforce news: the name of the first federal chief information security officer. The new position, reporting to the federal CIO, was part of the cyber plan released in February.

About the Author

Adam Mazmanian is executive editor of FCW.

Before joining the editing team, Mazmanian was an FCW staff writer covering Congress, government-wide technology policy and the Department of Veterans Affairs. Prior to joining FCW, Mazmanian was technology correspondent for National Journal and served in a variety of editorial roles at B2B news service SmartBrief. Mazmanian has contributed reviews and articles to the Washington Post, the Washington City Paper, Newsday, New York Press, Architect Magazine and other publications.

Click here for previous articles by Mazmanian. Connect with him on Twitter at @thisismaz.


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