NICE Cybersecurity Workforce Framework


The NICE Cybersecurity Workforce Framework (NCWF) is a national resource that categorizes and describes cybersecurity work. It provides employers, employees, educators, students, and training providers with a common language to define cybersecurity work as well as a common set of tasks and skills required to perform cybersecurity work. Through the process of identifying the cybersecurity workforce and using a standard set of terms we can work together to educate, recruit, train, develop, and retain a highly-qualified workforce. 

As such, in 2014, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security led development of an updated the NCWF with input from the private sector, academia, and government.

NICE Cybersecurity Workforce Framework Overview

The NCWF provides a common language to describe cybersecurity work regardless of organizational structures or job titles. It organizes cybersecurity work into Specialty Areas and Work Roles. Similar Specialty Areas and Work Roles are grouped together and referred to as Categories.
For each Work Role, the NCWF provides a superset list of required tasks and knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs). This information provides organizations (and those developing cybersecurity teams within an organization) with a reference with a level of detail around what types of education, training, certifications and skills it takes to perform the various types of cybersecurity work.
The NCWF is meant to be flexible and organizations should use it as a reference guide to fit their specific needs. Some examples include:

  • Standardize how positions are managed and described by populating position descriptions with Tasks and KSAs from the Workforce Framework.
  • Incorporate Tasks and KSAs into job advertisements to attract candidates who can perform needed job functions.
  • Develop career paths that outline the Tasks and KSAs staff need to perform to progress to the next level.

DHS has some resources connected to the NCWF


Supporting Materials


NICE Cube - Workforce Framework

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