Endorsed by the Air Force Chief Information Office as a critical need for the Air Force, this project focused on improving the Air Force’s cyber talent management. Participants looked at the challenges facing the Air Force in trying to retain talented people in a highly competitive career field. Using human-centered design, they sought solutions for the following design problem:

“How might we best attract, reward, and retain the most effective cyber talent for the US Air Force?”

The AFCTM Design Sprint Group


During this two-and-a-half-day sprint, 40 participants from 21 military entities and 10 companies around the United States gathered at the Air Force CyberWorx design studio. They divided into six groups, and each created a hypothetical end-user persona based on the problem discovery. Using their personas, groups developed solutions that meet the needs of real end-users.

Proposed Solutions

The proposed solutions were grouped into four concepts:

1. Level Up: A game-like approach to cyber talent management that allows cyber personnel to map their ideal career paths, uses a scoring-based promotion system where users can earn ‘points’ towards desired positions, and provides a better system for civilian hires from industry
2. A Modern Talent Management System (TMS): A re-vamped TMS that includes policy changes, a Billet/Airmen Qualification Radar Profile, and a Machine Learning Model to assist hiring personnel in finding better job matches
3. A Centralized DevOps Organization: An organization that overcomes the current lack of defined purpose and chain of command by consolidating all programmers under a single organization which organizes, trains, and equips its Airmen
4. Back to School: A new system for hiring professional cyber instructors and maintaining up-to-date curriculum in order to produce mission-ready cyber personnel