John Zangardi, chief information officer of the Department of Homeland Security, has said there is a need for the department to implement a more flexible hiring process as it administers various modernization initiatives, FedScoop reported Friday.
He explained during the American Council for Technology and Industry Advisory Council’s latest Federal Insights Exchange Session that he is competing with private firms in terms of salary, quality of life and job satisfaction when recruiting cyber and information technology experts.
Zangardi added that he plans to increase cyber pay compensations in 2019 to boost the skills of IT employees across the DHS and to sustain its workforce.
“That will help me compete a little bit better within the broader cyber community to hold onto people,” he said.
However, the DHS official noted a backlog of 800,000 security clearance applications and other factors hindering the department from hiring new talent despite the increased compensation.
DHS Chief Human Capital Officer Angela Bailey has started coordinating with Zangardi’s office to develop ways to streamline its hiring process, which will include employing interns and launching a system for cyber professionals.