Cyber Security Job Outlook 2019 — Part 5: AI & You

by | Aug 1, 2019 | Cybersecurity | 0 comments

Each first Thursday of the month is a new installment in Stronger’s Jobs in Cybersecurity Series. The articles in the series have looked at employment from the employer’s perspective, the professional’s, how the obsession with unicorns is affecting the growing skills gap, and new approaches to bridging the gap.  This month, Stronger looks how AI is affecting the job market and what you can do to prepare. 


When discussing the skills gap in cybersecurity, it’s irresponsible to skip the role and potential impact of Artificial Intelligence (AI). AI is already a part of our lives, from digital assistants like Siri or Alexa to some phone services, email tools, and even the ‘person’ taking our orders at drive thrus. Increasingly, AI is also used in cybersecurity — for phishing identification, threat hunting, suspicious activity monitoring, and much more.



But Will AI Steal Your Job?


With figures stating that AI may displace 75 million jobs and that 47% of US jobs are vulnerable to automation, it’s hard to not panic. However, AI is also creating new jobs.  In fact, AI will add 133 million new roles — resulting in not a loss but a net gain of 58 million jobs.


According to James Wilson, VP of Cornerstone tech company, “We are currently experiencing an immense shift in the way we work, and this is only going to augment over time, which is why humans need to prepare for the workplace of the future, today…. Digital transformation is impacting all careers both present and future, and in order to stay ahead, we must prepare for jobs that don’t even exist today.”


The best path to prepare for this shift is to “reeducate ourselves, to improve ourselves and upskill ourselves,” says the president of Northeastern University, Joseph Aoun.



What can you do?


Keep learning. The whole idea that a college degree is all you need for your future is no longer applicable. Business changes too quickly and technology is always advancing. Perpetual learning is now the model. Keep credentials updated. Go to boot camps. Learn new skills and practice them. Keep adding to your skills.


Learn soft skills. Earlier this year, LinkedIn reported that strengthening your soft skills is one of the best investments you can make in a career. It’s among the skills that AI can’t replace, along with leadership and empathy.


Evaluate the market every 2 years. The market changes quickly. Job directions shift. Skills needed are quickly outdated and may require a complete overhaul. Look at where you want to go, how to get there, what training you’ll need, and make the needed changes. Don’t assume that finding out once will set your direction for life. The future is dynamic.



Jobs to consider


Whether your job is at risk or not, with the vast number of new jobs being created by AI, consider some of the options. A recent list of the 10 most in-demand AI jobs worldwide includes Software Engineer, Data Scientist, AI Researcher, Intelligence Specialist, AI Data Analyst, Machine Learning Engineer, and Product Manager.


And if salary is part of your consideration in a future career, AI is still a solid option. Indeed reports that the “10 highest-paying AI jobs, and their average salary in the US,”are:


  1. Director of analytics $140,837
  2. Principal scientist $138,271
  3. Machine learning engineer $134,449
  4. Computer vision engineer $134,346
  5. Data scientist $130,503
  6. Data engineer $125,999
  7. Algorithm engineer $104,112
  8. Computer scientist $97,850
  9. Statistician $83,731
  10. Research engineer $71,600


AI will continue to alter career paths, create new jobs, and take over tedious tasks. But it will also continue to create new opportunities for those willing to prepare and take on new challenges. AI is not the enemy; it is opportunity.


Our world is not what it was 20 years ago. And in another 20 years, life as we know it today may be unrecognizable. Fearing AI is unnecessary, preparing for change is. Look at where you want to go and start working toward that opportunity today — there are many lucrative choices to choose from and no reason to delay preparing. The future is here.