What is the Blockchain?
The blockchain is a decentralized
digital ledger where transactions are recorded chronologically and depending on
the cryptocurrency, displayed publicly or not. This digital ledger was first
created for Bitcoin (BTC) in 2009. However, over the last nine years, there
have been many other developments in the sector. One major competitor is IOTA’s
Tangle which looks to achieve the same immutable outcomes in a much different
Up until recently, BTC was
considered as an outdated coin having the slowest and most expensive blockchain
on which to transact, and thus turned to being used as more of a store of
wealth (like gold) than anything else.
Since BTC’s most recent updates
and forks, it is likely the view of BTC has shifted significantly. The pioneer
currency may have been the first cryptocurrency to implement the blockchain,
but the technology has progressed rapidly since its inception. Recently, the
author looked in depth as to how best expose oneself to these revolutionary
technologies without taking on the risk of owning actual cryptocurrencies.
Demand Soaring for Blockchain
Becoming a blockchain developer
is not the most challenging task for those who already possess a solid
knowledge of coding and an understanding of how the blockchain works. An
educated coder could quickly become a blockchain developer in less than a year,
for instance. Specifically, the developer would have to be familiar with C++
It would also be advantageous if
they understood HTML and CSS to have a general idea about the different core
technologies used in the World Wide Web. BTC’s source code, for instance, is in
C++ and remains a favorite for blockchain developers.
Recently the demand for
individuals in the blockchain talent pool has been soaring. Initial Coin
Offerings (ICOs) raising capital in the United States have already passed the
$3.7 billion milestone. This need provides an opportunity for all individuals
connected with ICOs, predominantly blockchain developers.
Teams of different ICOs are
always unique but what they all have in common are multiple blockchain experts.
These experts form the core of the ICO while “expert” advisers and team members
shape the face of the company. Each ICO needs blockchain talent specifically
focused on their project. But with such a slim market of developers to choose
from, coupled with increasing demand, salaries for developers have nearly
Current Demand Ratio 14 to 1
The current ratio for job
openings in the blockchain space to the available talent pool is 14 to one.
That means there are 14 blockchain job openings for every one blockchain expert
seeking employment. Overall, the current blockchain talent pool is less than
ten percent of the current job placement advertisements for the sector. This
ratio demonstrates that capital has far outpaced talent in the blockchain
Another critical point to
highlight is that many ICOs and companies do not want multiple blockchain
experts on salary as they are getting more and more expensive. What is
developing is a world of on-demand talent or a circulation of the oft-cited
When tasks are generated that
require a blockchain expert, an organization goes to an on-demand tech
marketplace to “rent” the time to complete the task. Toptal, for instance, is
one of the most well-known, on-demand tech talent marketplaces. Toptal
currently represents about 50 percent of on-demand tech engineering labor by
Companies searching for
blockchain talent are increasingly sourcing talent “on-demand” to accomplish
short-term tasks while not having to pay long-term salaries.
On-demand Blockchain Services
Toptal has commented that since
January 2017, demand for blockchain talent has grown by more than seven hundred
percent. These numbers are impressive, but what is even more impressive is that
forty percent of the projects currently listed require blockchain skills to
partake in them. It does not seem the blockchain is fading but instead
solidifying itself as a revolutionary technology.
An analysis of Total’s most
requested fields sheds light on which strengths employers are most interested
- Hyperledger Fabric implementation
was ranked the most sought after strength. With a proposed launch in the next
few years, the technology is a focal point for many firms around the world.
- Ripple: The second is Ripple as
employers want to ensure they are hiring a blockchain expert that understands
the payment protocol and distributed process for remittances, payments and
- Solidity: The last most sought
skill set is Solidity, which is a smart-contract programming language for
Ethereum. In the world of open source projects, sharing talent means the
blockchain expert is no longer committed to one company but chooses to work
on-demand for multiple companies when they are available.
The demand for blockchain
engineers is so significant that it has driven Toptal to create another career
vertical along with a training regimen for existing engineers to become
Upwork, More On-Demand Freelance
Upwork is another freelance
on-demand talent website. The firm has commented multiple times regarding how
“blockchain” rose to the fastest growing skill sought by companies out of a
total of five thousand total skills. Regarding freelance billings for those
that have blockchain in their repertoire, there was a year over year increase
of thirty-five thousand percent (35,000 percent). These numbers are not
specific to blockchain architects but include blockchain consultancy and ICO
advisory services as well. The entire blockchain sector is growing at a rate
that outpaces every other market currently.
Blockchain is Here to Stay
It is incredible that individuals
still doubt cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology. Of course, scam coins
still float among the fifteen hundred coins out there, but there are also
companies that get in trouble for scams and fraud all the time out of the
thousands listed on the U.S. and foreign exchanges.
The capital flowing in even after
the occasional scare far outpaces the current talent pool available to fill
requested positions. These employment opportunities range from consultancy
positions, engineering, coding, to advising ICOs.
Blockchain technology is the
economic revolution of our current generation. The capital flow from companies
and ICOs shows society is not fighting blockchain’s adoption but is rapidly
trying to catch up.