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Making a Difference at Deloitte: Diversity and Development in Cyber Security

As we celebrate International Women’s Day, we are proud of our efforts to make the cyber security industry a welcome place for everyone. We come from a variety of backgrounds and are actively engaged in promoting a diverse and balanced workplace, as well as inspiring the younger generation to consider cyber security as an area to study or potential career path.

This is only possible with a dedicated, inclusive and passionate team, and we are pleased to present the perspectives below from three colleagues and role models. If these perspectives resonate with you, and if you are interested in learning more or pursuing a career in cyber security, feel free to get in touch with us.

Lisa Hamilton & Hannah Parvin – EMEA Leads, Deloitte Women in Cyber Initiative

Joanna Bouckaert

What’s the one thing you love about your job?

“If I had to choose only one among the various aspects I love about my job, it will be variety. It is what makes me wake up in the morning with a smile (after the caffeine) and here is why:

  • Every day there is a new challenge to take on as part of my project work. This keeps me interested and eager to find innovative ways to solve it.
  • I have the opportunity to get involved in many different initiatives – related or not to cybersecurity. This gives me the option to network with diverse people
  • The development options in terms of soft or technical skills is also wide-ranging so I know I can upskill outside of my direct areas of work.
  • I also believe that variety is a vector for increased diversity.”

How can businesses become more diverse and balanced?

“I believe there is not a single magical fix to increase diversity. However, there are definitely several quick wins that businesses can do to become more diverse.

  • The tone from the top is essential. Having leaders who are role models in diversity creates an inclusive culture that then percolates through all the company.
  • Encouraging variety is also a key element in fostering diversity. Supporting employees to take on or support different initiatives across the business is a way to meet the needs of individuals from various backgrounds and interests.
  • The recruitment process is also a powerful means to increase diversity. If processes are designed to avoid biases it can be prove very successful.”

Claire Goldhill

What’s the one thing you love about your job?

“I love the variety of work that you get from bring a consultant at Deloitte. One day you can be working on the cultural aspect of a business, and the day next attending workshops to prepare for a global cyber-attack on an organisation. You are constantly warped into a new environment – if not a new organisation, then a new field of operation or new stakeholder – meaning that you can never be bored. This constantly changing environment has given me a mix of functional skills (i.e. knowledge of branch/industry or analytic skills) and personal skills (i.e. communication or management skills) that has helped me to build the knowledge I need for a great career in cyber.”

How can businesses become more diverse and balanced?

“I think a great way to become more diverse and more balanced is to look at the hiring process and whether people are being excluded unintentionally. You can’t always control who applies for an open position” is a false narrative. If you are always attracting the same gender/ethnic background/personality then it’s time to assess your recruitment strategy and rethink your talent pipeline. It is important to remember that having a diverse team means people having different experiences and having a different perspective which can only be a good thing and this can be over-looked when creating job adverts.“

Amy Hur

What’s the one thing you love about your job?

“I’m fortunate to work with a great team of people who not only trust in my abilities, but also actively encourage my development. It means I can really push myself with the degree of autonomy that I’m given, as well as have the flexibility to manage my career and commitments outside of work. One thing I’ve come to realise is that there are such a wide variety of interests and hobbies within our practice! I studied mathematics, played in a semi-professional orchestra for two years and took up many additional hobbies on the side. It’s great that as long as you put your mind to it, you can develop your career and have the time to recharge and become a more rounded individual within the workplace.”

How can businesses become more diverse and balanced?

“I believe diversity not only promotes innovation and better performance, but can actually change the way a company culture feels like to its employees, which is where businesses can start trying to make a difference. Making small steps to raise awareness can lead to palpable actions and initiatives that people can see, and it’s important to then take stock of the effect these actions have had and assign the accountability where it’s due. Lots of businesses are actively trying to raise awareness of diversity and foster a more balanced, flexible way of working to suit their people; it’s about building and communicating that story of success and how it’s positively affecting the people that really keeps the progress going.”

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