Mid-Market Mayhem: Advania finds Top Talent Exodus Exposes Cybersecurity Vulnerabilities

“Excellent” IT staff retained for over two years by just 2%

Advania, one of Microsoft’s leading cloud services providers, today released its ‘Engage the core; mid-market tech challenges report’. The findings prove the close links between the trifecta of challenges of cybersecurity, cost and complexity for mid-market organisations in Northern EMEA.

Independent research firm Censuswide conducted a survey of 966 mid-market IT Decision Makers across the UK, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Norway and Iceland. The study has identified a concerning trend: mid-market businesses are struggling to translate cybersecurity awareness into effective practice.

While many prioritise training, implementation of basic security measures often falls short, leaving companies vulnerable to attack. The NEMEA region appears particularly susceptible, with businesses facing challenges like incomplete security strategies, high staff turnover, and inadequate accountability in the wake of attacks. These factors can lead to significant disruption and damage.

Hege Store, Group CEO of Advania says,“this research report uncovers the hidden truths of the mid-market and prevents them from feeling overlooked, undervalued and encumbered. Our aim in working with mid-market companies is to ensure they can integrate modern technology into their organisation and scale quickly and securely at an affordable cost.”

Cyber training outpaces basic practices

Almost half, 47%, of mid-market organisations develop cybersecurity strategies in-house, brimming with confidence in their effectiveness, and two-thirds of mid-market businesses claim to offer a range of cybersecurity awareness training repeated at least quarterly. Despite this, basic security practices remain neglected with over half, 55%, admitting to neglecting firewalls and antivirus and 57% of mid-market businesses not patching regularly.

Top IT talent disruption

Building a robust cyber strategy falters in the face of a revolving door of IT talent. Just 2% of

businesses said they managed to retain “excellent” IT staff for over two years, with 28% losing top talent within six months. The issues caused by this constant flux undermines internal knowledge and hinders management accountability for cybersecurity.

The accountability enigma

A concerning 43% of respondents expect cloud providers to cover data recovery costs. Many mid-market businesses operate without external cybersecurity expertise, leaving them unsure of whether they’re liable.

This misplaced assumption leaves organisations vulnerable to unforeseen financial burdens. A worrying 40% believe cloud providers should shoulder the cost of stolen cloud computing usage (e.g. cryptojacking) and subsequent repairs. Only 3% recognise their own responsibility, leaving the vast majority unprepared for cyber-related expenses. This is made worse by high turnover among their top IT staff who rarely stay beyond 12 months.

Pravesh Kara, Director for Security and Compliance, Advania says, “the threat landscape is constantly evolving, and mid-market businesses remain particularly vulnerable due to limited resources and outdated security practices. Failing to keep up with evolving threats and invest in qualified IT personnel is a dangerous oversight. In today’s digital world, every company is a potential target, and a data breach can have devastating consequences. Proactive budgeting and investments in cybersecurity intelligence, awareness, protection, detection and response, underpinned by technology are crucial for mitigating risk and safeguarding your business.”

Featured Photo by Dan Nelson on Unsplash.

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