Cybersecurity is a fast-growing sector in the technology industry. Between 2019 and 2029, employment for information security analysts is expected to grow by 31%, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. In California alone, industry growth and turnover will lead to more than 23,000 job openings for Security Management Specialists in the next year.
Don’t have a bachelor’s degree in computer science or programming? No problem. Cybersecurity certifications are becoming a more common alternative to traditional higher education.
Not only do cybersecurity certifications provide training in much less time than a bachelor’s degree, but it can be a much more practical alternative for adult learners or people already in the field who are looking for a leg up in their careers.
Why a Cybersecurity Certification Might Be the Right Fit
If you are currently working a full-time job and want to learn key concepts for a job in a short amount of time, certification may be a really good fit for you.
While degrees focus on a broader depth of knowledge, a certification tests fundamental skills that are needed for a specific area. Studying for a degree may take a few years, but training for a cybersecurity certification can be completed in a couple of months.
Some certifications can also help technology professionals advance in their careers. Some may be designed specifically for management-level positions or cover daily tasks for specific jobs.
Having a cybersecurity certification reaffirms your skills and understanding of cybersecurity concepts to a potential employer in a similar way that a degree would. Some programs also include career services to help you with getting a job once you’ve finished training and received your certificate.
3 Careers in Cybersecurity You Should Consider
Cybersecurity certifications can allow people to explore and obtain many careers in the technology industry. Here are just a couple of possible careers that you might be interested in exploring.
Information Security Analysts
Salary and Job Opportunities: The median salary for an information security analyst is $97,823. More experienced workers can earn up to $138,466 annually.
Employment is expected to increase steadily over the next 10 years in many states. Companies that are currently posting jobs include Oracle, Deloitte LLP, and Facebook.
Daily Role and Responsibilities: Information security analysts protect files from unauthorized individuals who may try to modify or disclose the information. They are an important line of defense from malicious cyberattacks.
Information security analysts are in charge of updating virus protection systems and creating firewalls to keep information private. They will often perform tests and do routine maintenance to make sure that information is protected.
Information Technology Project Managers
Salary and Job Opportunities: The median salary for an information technology project manager is $96,127. More experienced professionals can have an annual salary of up to $170,097.
Employment is expected to increase slightly from 2021 to 2030. Many major technology companies have job postings for information technology project managers, including Oracle Corporation, Amazon, and IBM.
Daily Role and Responsibilities: Information technology project managers work on IT projects. From the beginning stages of the concept to final revisions, an IT project manager is there every step of the way.
Many IT project managers have to work under a tight budget and schedule. Since they are also leading a project, IT project managers have to make sure to effectively lead their team through tasks and establish a plan.
Security Management Specialists
Salary and Job Opportunities: Security management specialists earn a median salary of $68,845. Over time, more experienced professionals earn upwards of $120,871 in annual salary.
Target Corporation, The Home Depot, and IBM are just a few examples of companies that are currently posting jobs.
Daily Role and Responsibilities: Security management specialists are the brains behind security systems. Security management specialists engineer, maintain, and fix these systems regularly to make sure that areas like physical security and staff safety are protected.
Security management specialists may design and manage security measures like alarms and access cards. They may also install and provide maintenance for video surveillance, motion detection, and other security systems.
Security management specialists will usually set a system of policies in place to ensure that a location is secure. They will also be responsible for training others who use the security systems and testing the effectiveness of it.
Where You Can Get Cybersecurity Certification Training
WOZ developed an online Cyber Security training curriculum covering everything you need to know to prepare for industry-recognized cybersecurity certifications, including the CompTIA: Security+ Certification. The program, taken online via an accredited learning delivery partner, can be completed in less than eight months and prepares you for entry-level and mid-level positions.
It teaches in-demand hard skills like Python programming, cyber defense, and agile development. The program also covers softs skills through mentorship and career guidance opportunities. We also partnered with ENTITY Academy, creating courses designed to help women train for tech careers. Women can take courses in a specialized area of technology, while also having the opportunity to meet with leaders in the tech industry and receive career guidance after graduation.
Sophia Acevedo is a journalist based in Southern California. She is a 2020 graduate from California State University, Fullerton, and a proud Daily Titan alum.