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CISO Compensation and Budget Benchmark Study


IANS and Caldwell Partners surveyed 175 CISOs for their perspectives on compensation, security budgets, and job satisfaction.

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What will you receive with this study?

Entire Program Icon

A cross-industry overview of CISO compensation

That gives CISOs the ability to compare their compensation with their peer group.

Each Domain Icon

Market-validated benchmarking for security budgets

With data structured so CISOs can objectively assess how committed their own organization is to funding security compared to industry and geographic peers.

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A close look at the drivers of CISO satisfaction

Aimed to arm CISOs with the ability to ask the right questions when assessing new roles.

Here are a few things we've learned:

Figure 1

Get a sense of how your compensation package compares both with your industry peer group and within the context of the broader CISO market.

Graph of the Distribution of CISOs' total compensation, including equity
More than a third of CISOs are open to a near-term job change
Figure 4

CISOs are prepared to act on their dissatisfaction and are open to a move. On the whole, and irrespective of satisfaction level, more than a third of CISOs are open to a job change in the next six months.


"We’re thrilled to deliver this research – the high point for me was seeing that two-thirds of CISOs are satisfied with their visibility with the C-suite. This industry is maturing quickly, and this study offers insight on where CISOs and their budgets stand up against their peers and comparable firms."

- Phil Gardner, Founder & CEO of IANS

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About IANS

For the security practitioner caught between rapidly evolving threats and demanding executives, IANS Research is a clear-headed resource for decision making and articulating risk. We provide experience-based security insights for Chief Information Security Officers and their teams. The core of our value comes from the IANS Faculty, a network of seasoned practitioners. We support client decisions and executive communications with Ask-an-Expert inquiries, our peer community, deployment-focused reports, tools and templates, and consulting. For more information, please visit our homepage.

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About Caldwell

As a leading provider of executive talent, we enable our clients to thrive and succeed by helping them identify, recruit and retain the best people. Our reputation–50 years in the making–has been built on transformative searches across functions and geographies at the very highest levels of management and operations. With offices and partners across North America, Europe and Asia Pacific, we take pride in delivering an unmatched level of service and expertise to our clients. For more information, please visit https://www.caldwellpartners.com.

Led by Matt Comyns, Caldwell’s Cyber Security Practice focuses on recruiting CISOs, their direct reports, and go-to-market leaders for security vendors. As first-movers in cyber recruiting, our cyber security consultants have been partnering with clients of all sizes to raise the bar on security hiring across the globe for nearly a decade. Our team of security search consultants have been working hands-on with leaders as the security function has evolved and the demands for security talent have changed.