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Does working in Cyber Security give you more or less time for your life

Hello my name is Daniel I am a current Cyber Security prospect and would like to know if and how working in Cyber Security has affected your time work-wise and socially. (e.g: work hours/free time)

Any information helps, Thank you for your time.

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Sydney’s Answer

Hi Daniel,

My name is Sydney and I'm interning at Duo Security over the summer. I would say that working in the cybersecurity industry affords me a great work-life balance. It's not like other industries where they expect their employees to work 80 hours a week. I have rarely worked over 40 hours a week because there's such a big emphasis on work-life balance and wellbeing. Although this isn't completely related, if you are struggling or need extra time for a task, most managers or people that you're working on are happy to give you an extension BUT only if you're transparent and you tell them that you need help or extra time. I'm also friends with a lot of the people that I work. Duo encourages you to network with other people in the company to connect and learn about them. I love the people on my team and I really enjoy meeting people on other teams that I usually would never get the chance to interact with. Just a heads up: this is my experience at Duo and it may not be the same for other people in the industry. Hope this helps :)
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Stephanie’s Answer

Hello Daniel-

I am currently working at Duo Security, part of the cybersecurity field. I would say it depends on the company you end up working for. Your work-life balance is really decided by the company culture and the boundaries you set. You can look for companies that values employees' time and give generous PTO, but you also need to set boundaries for yourself, not allowing yourself to work unpaid overtime. Here at Duo, there is a culture of encouraging employees to take time off and setting strict working hours. So far, I have had a good work-life balance in the cybersecurity field.
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Jordan’s Answer

You should look for a company that respect work-life balance. Cyber-security is a tough job since many companies want someone to be watching their networks 24/7. If a company has a shortage of cyber-security specialists, it may be a sign you will be over-worked.

I would suggest you to try the job anyway. If you think you are over-worked, you can always change jobs.
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Jordan’s Answer

You should look for a company that respect work-life balance. Cyber-security is a tough job since many companies want someone to be watching their networks 24/7. If a company has a shortage of cyber-security specialists, it may be a sign you will be over-worked.

I would suggest you to try the job anyway. If you think you are over-worked, you can always change jobs.
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Jason’s Answer

I'm currently an intern for a Security Team at my company, and I can say that out hours are pretty flexible and no one really expects to work outside of regular hours unless you really want to, so personally I don't see any conflicts between work-life balance and working in security. However, I would like to acknowledge that this is probably a more company and team specific thing. When you are applying to jobs, I would recommend that you ask them about work-life balance for their company, and also the team you are applying for. None of that info is meant to be secret or anything, and those are really good questions to ask during interviews!
Good luck on your security journey, I hope you stick with it!
Thank you comment icon Thanks Jason for the support, we got this! Daniel
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Alex’s Answer

Hi Daniel,

It really depends what sector of cyber security you work in and what type of company you work for. For example, as a consultant we always put our clients first, this means that if there is an emergency situation, they can reach out to us at any time for assistance. This is not a regular occurrence but it does happen. Additionally, we are salaried employees so we work until the job is finished, so don't expect overtime pay. That being said, this career offers much more flexibility than other careers. Many companies have a work your own hours policy, you wanna work 12am to 8am, go ahead, want to do 9-5, great! The only expectation is you get your work done and make all your meetings. With COVID, many jobs have become hybrid so you could work while on the go. Your job is what you make of it and always make sure to have some work life balance.

Best,
Alex Nasca
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Mickael’s Answer

Hi Daniel,

I do not think the time depends on the area in computer you are stepping into but more about the company and the actual job. There is definitely a need for cyber security engineers and technicians but I will say not more than other computer jobs.
I think this really depends on the company you work for. For example, Dell (the company I am working on) emphasis a lot on work-life balance though we're not lacking things to do in this area. If you work for a startup that needs to achieve some important milestones, the speech might be totally different.
Also, the work-life balance also comes from you. Any companies, even if they advertise good work-life balance for employees, will try to make you work as long as you can. You are the one to give a limit. This is even more true now, due to a lot of workers working from home. Since there is no clear separation, a lot of employees are working longer, simply because there is no commute, and your computer is just here and ready when you're done with your home chores and duties. This is up to you to set the limits.
Most companies will not scrutinize the number of hours of work as long as your management think the work is done.
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Rebecca’s Answer

Hey Daniel!

While I’m not in cyber security specifically, I do run our compliance program and work under IT. I can tell you that being in IT, there are times when you will have to work outside of normal business hours. However, that could be true for many roles. I don’t think cyber security is specifically going to be longer hours or have less balance than other roles.

You can ask questions about work life balance during your interviews. You can ask about the team size in proportion to the company size. Look around for what’s normal at similar companies and industries. Questions like, “what is expected of this role, work load, expectations of what this role will be able to produce/execute/resolve and in what time period?” Cyber security is a solid profession that is still currently highly needed with a low pool of candidates. That means you get to choose what environment suits you best!
Thank you comment icon Thank you Rebecca for the information and tips! Daniel
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