Thinking of a mid-career switch between Software Development and Cybersecurity?
A mid-career switch across tech jobs in Singapore have been an ongoing trend – whether by choice or by circumstances. Regardless of existing apprehensiveness given the uncertainty of the market, the tech industry in Singapore is still booming and two such areas are software development and cybersecurity.
A trend in the recent years includes the move from larger MNCs that may be highly regulated, to start-ups that thrive on digital innovation and change. While this may be intimidating to many, there are transferable skills which can bridge gaps that companies of all sizes including financial technology (fintech) firms are looking to fill. Some of these roles include system engineering, risk analysis, software development and software engineering.
Why should you pursue a career in cybersecurity?
There have been ample support and demand from the government to ramp up its cybersecurity sector to bolster the nation’s technological capabilities and defences in IT security.
On 8 October 2021, the Cyber Security Agency of Singapore (CSA) launched its Operational Technology Cybersecurity Competency Framework (OTCCF), which is designed to provide a foundation upon which Singapore can attract and develop talent for the emerging operational technology cybersecurity sector in the country.
The OTCCF maps out the various job roles, technical skills and core competencies that are in need, and captures the possible career pathways, showing the options for vertical and lateral career progression.
On 5 October 2021, the Singapore government also released its new Cybersecurity Strategy 2021, five years after the launch of the first Singapore Cybersecurity Strategy in 2016 in hopes to simplify cybersecurity for end-users whilst developing deeper partnerships with the industry in adapting to changes within the cyber operating environment.
In the words of the CSA, the new strategy outlines Singapore’s plans to take "a more proactive stance" against threats, raise the overall level of cybersecurity across the nation and advance international norms and standards on cybersecurity.
As such, it is more than likely that the cybersecurity sector would continue to boast a positive outlook in the years to come. This would also translate to an increase of jobs available. As such, there will also be a demand to fill the cybersecurity talent gap.
Increasing trend in a mid-career switch from software development to cybersecurity
Your job as a software developer can be very exciting – from building apps that your friends and family use daily to developing systems that run devices and control networks. While this is a great career path, did you know that all the experience and knowledge you have in software development or software engineering can also smoothly transition you into a career within cybersecurity?
If you currently work in networking, software development, systems engineering, financial and risk analysis, IT support or security intelligence, you will potentially have transferrable skillsets that cybersecurity career pathways would require.
What are the top skills required to move from software developer to cybersecurity and vice versa?
Your experience in software development gives you certain tech skills that can help you begin a career in cybersecurity, simply because cybersecurity requires skills from many other facets of IT.
Below are some of the general skills needed within IT:
- Software Development
- Software Engineering
Additional skills that help developers move into cybersecurity:
- Information Systems
- Information Assurance
- Security Operations
Ensure that you inform potential employers of the skillsets you have, especially the general skills mentioned above. The additional ones are unique skillsets that software development professionals can add to their competency to improve your chances in landing a new job within cybersecurity.
Cybersecurity courses to pick up during this period:
- NTUC LearningHub
- Top Cybersecurity Courses| Coursera
- Cybersecurity Courses | NUS ISS
- Cyber Security Courses Singapore | PSB Academy
- SkillsFuture Series Cybersecurity | IMDA Singapore
Top well-known cybersecurity certifications to have:
The above courses are highly recommended if you are thinking of picking up more skills on a part-time basis. If you wish to widen your knowledge within cybersecurity or software development, reach out to our consultants who can recommend more learning avenues, platforms to network with other professionals within the industry and share events suitable for you.
Top cybersecurity jobs you can apply to
The software developer job roles that transition well into a cybersecurity role are more mid-level and advanced-level jobs such as:
- Cybersecurity engineer
- Penetration tester
- Cybersecurity analyst
- Cybersecurity architect
Similarly, the above specialists can also apply to software developer jobs too. Contrary to popular belief on mid-career switches, transitioning to a cybersecurity career from software development and vice versa isn’t a huge stretch. Many of the skills you already have can set you up for success in both fields.
If you wish to find out more about what hiring managers in either sector are looking for, whether in terms of the skills and certifications necessary or the experience required, our Huxley team will be able to share more with you.
Reach out to us via the form below and a dedicated specialist consultant will be in touch with you. Alternatively, you may also stay up to date with the latest news by following us on our LinkedIn page.