28 September 2017

Retaining the Army's Cyber Expertise

by Jennie W. Wenger, Caolionn O'Connell, Maria C. Lytell

In 2014, the Army established the Cyber career field as a basic branch, which includes the 17C military occupational specialty for enlisted cyber operations specialists. These soldiers require extensive training, and Army leadership is concerned that they will be lured away by lucrative jobs in the civilian labor market. This report describes findings that will help inform the Army's strategy for retaining these 17C soldiers. Our findings indicate that soldiers who qualify for 17C are more likely than others to remain in the Army through their first term; however, they also appear to be somewhat less likely to reenlist. In the civilian sector, information security analysts perform similar duties to 17Cs in the Army, and many information security analysts are veterans. Given that, 17C soldiers who do not reenlist may pursue civilian careers as information security analysts. 

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