OPM created a “cybersecurity hiring resources” section on its Future of Work site, saying it will give agencies “easy access to resources, including information on flexibilities for recruiting, hiring, and retaining cybersecurity employees” — one of the occupations in which the government’s problems in those areas are the most severe.
It noted that hiring flexibilities include direct hire authority, authority to make noncompetitive appointments, special hiring authorities for students and recent graduates, the Cyber Corps Scholarship for Service program, and limited-time appointments of experts and consultants. Available incentives include recruitment, relocation and retention payments, student loan reimbursements, and flexibilities for setting higher pay rates for those in positions of critical need and/or for a candidate’s superior qualifications.
A memo announcing the feature also called attention to several ongoing initiatives related to better assessing the government’s needs for those employees. One updates requirements under the Federal Cybersecurity Workforce Assessment Act of 2015 concerning how to identify and code positions involved in cybersecurity, information technology, and cyber-related functions.
The other notes an inter-agency pilot “aiming to increase the visibility and effectiveness of our federal cybersecurity job opportunity announcements. Among other potential outcomes of this pilot is the enhanced ability to attract specifically needed cybersecurity skills rather than more generic GS-2210 skills typically advertised in our federal JOAs,” it said.