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Workforce Opportunity Services Hits the Cybersecurity Skills Gap Head-On

The nationwide organization builds talent pipelines of underrepresented and veteran talent through partners who are dedicated to diversifying their workforce

Workforce Opportunity Services (WOS) — a leading global nonprofit and socially-driven organization committed to developing the skills of untapped talent from underserved, underrepresented and veteran communities— has launched a new program focused on the cybersecurity sector.

“WOS has been building innovative new talent pipeline solutions for more than fifteen years. But with the proliferation of data flowing across the internet, combined with the inherent challenges associated with COVID-19, and the need to protect even more data, developing a talent pipeline specifically for the cybersecurity sector has become paramount,” said Dr. Arthur Langer, Founder and Chairman of Workforce Opportunity Services.

According to a recent study by Accenture, 68% of business leaders feel their cybersecurity risks are increasing. A study by eSecurityPlanet.com in 2020 found that 74% of companies report the cybersecurity skills gap is directly impacting their ability to secure sensitive information, leading to data breaches and issues with regulatory compliance. As a result, the cybersecurity sector is expected to grow in a variety of areas over the next decade.

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Additionally, there are half as many African Americans and Hispanics in technology-related fields than there are in the rest of the private sector. WOS is committed to fostering equitable career opportunities by developing the skills of untapped talent from underserviced and veteran communities through partnerships with organizations dedicated to diversifying their workforce. The organization seeks to empower individuals to move from economic need to long-lasting professional success and financial independence, as well as help companies cultivate a diverse and inclusive workplace that is representative of the communities they serve.

“We’re serious about being a catalyst for change to shape the future of a diverse workforce,” said Dr. Langer. “We encourage organizations who are passionate about broadening their talent pool to think differently about where and how they find talent, and to recognize that a diversified, well-trained, highly ambitious workforce awaits them.”

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He went on to add, “At WOS, we’ve created a unique talent pipeline solution unlike anything else that’s on the market today, we assume the risk so that our clients don’t have to. We recruit undiscovered diverse talent from your local communities, provide professional development and tailored training, employ them directly while they work on-site or remotely for our corporate partners until they are ready to be hired away.”

WOS uses a scientifically-based model derived from research conducted at Columbia University. The research studied how to prepare individuals—who had little educational or technical experience—for roles in information technology. The project identified the employment challenges and brought to life an essential need for programs that merged technical training, interpersonal skills, and mentoring on how to boost self-confidence to successfully integrate underserved talent into the workforce. That model, known as the Langer Workforce Maturity Arc, has become the foundational element of the WOS recruiting, training, and placement program.

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