Deloitte’s latest Digital Disruption Index found that while the confidence in the digital skills of new entrants into the workplace has improved over the last six months, only 18 percent of executives believe workers coming out of U.K. schools have the right digital skills.

The study also found that firms are investing in artificial intelligence, cloud and data analytics and cybersecurity technology with 84 percent of respondents reporting already being invested in cybersecurity, nine percent planning to, three percent planning to within the next 24 months, one percent saying they never have, and three percent unsure, the report found.

When it comes to implementation, 52 percent of respondents said they are scaling their cybersecurity operations across different departments while 25 percent said they are in production to implement, four percent are experimenting, three percent are scoping and 16 percent have not yet implemented it.

Paul Edon, senior director at Tripwire, told SC Media the skills gap is not a new phenomenon but added that recruits can start improving on the odds by ensuring they don’t overlook soft skills especially when recruiting cybersecurity talent.  

“The reality is that today’s security pros need to go beyond technical expertise,” Edon said. “Being a good communicator who can connect cybersecurity issues to business priorities, rally the rest of the organization to get involved, solve tough problems and handle sensitive issues with integrity are all extremely desirable traits for any security team.”

He added that as regulations change, more employees will be required to get more involved in the cybersecurity of their company, especially those within the legal and compliance teams.

“Security is a shared responsibility, even for those without any technical cybersecurity experience,” Edon said. “Furthermore, offering and promoting education and training to all those within an organisation, to help enforce best security practices, will bring the industry a step closer to bridging the skills gap.”