With cyberattacks on the rise, the demand for skilled cybersecurity professionals is high. According to a report by Fortinet, 80 percent of organizations worldwide have suffered one or more breaches due to a lack of cybersecurity skills. However, finding talent to fill these roles is difficult, and keeping them filled is also a challenge. In fact, 60 percent of organizations admit they struggle with recruitment and 52 percent say they have trouble retaining those employees. 

One company trying to close the skills gap in cybersecurity is Cybrary, an education platform with over two thousand courses in cybersecurity and IT. Armed with $25 million in Series C funding from BuildGroup and Gula Tech Adventures, Cybrary plans to bolster its upskilling offerings to create more cybersecurity professionals to handle today’s digital threats. 

“I fundamentally believe that the biggest problem in cybersecurity is a people capability one,” Cybrary CEO Kevin Hanes told Built In in an interview. “I think more people are starting to believe that … we have the right technology to solve cybersecurity problems. Now the question is, how do we get people the skills?”

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Cybrary’s offerings fall into two main categories: individual and corporate training. According to Hanes, 60 to 70 percent of its users are individuals who are either looking to enter the cybersecurity field or current professionals hoping to keep their skills sharp. The remaining 30 to 40 percent consists of cybersecurity teams at companies investing in their employees’ continued education.

“I wish more companies would think about [education stipends] not as a squishy benefit but as a ‘this is how we practice, this is how we get better,’” Hanes said.

Hanes also believes that employers offering training and education resources like Cybrary to its employees could help improve retention rates in the industry. Currently, the average retention rate for a cybersecurity professional is one and a half to two years. Hanes’ philosophy is that if companies offer educational and upskilling benefits, employees are more likely to turn down offers from recruiters, even if the salary is higher.

“Everyone is out there fishing in the same pond of talent, and therefore you have people competing to give candidates the best salaries, but with everyone doing that, how are you supposed to keep up?” Hanes said. “The answer is you don’t. You offer them something more than just financial compensation. You invest in them.”

In addition to the funding raise, Cybrary also announced Kevin Mandia, CEO of Mandiant, joined its board of directors. 

“I am excited to be joining Cybrary’s board of directors during this exciting chapter of growth and momentum for the company,” Mandia said. “Its mission to elevate the workforce and narrow the cybersecurity skills gap is inspirational. I am looking forward to helping Cybrary have an even greater impact to elevate the workforce to better defend the cyber domain.”

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