With the price of Bitcoin skyrocketing, technologists are no doubt wondering whether there’s increased demand for jobs that involve blockchain, the technology that forms the foundation of modern cryptocurrency.
As with so many technology jobs, the answer is a bit complicated. Burning Glass, which collects and analyzes millions of job postings from across the country, shows us that a very small percentage of popular technology jobs (such as software developer) mention blockchain in their job postings. However, all indications are that demand for blockchain skills will increase significantly over the next decade. Let’s take a look at the chart:
In other words, blockchain knowledge could translate into more job opportunities over the next few years, but the vast majority of companies don’t seem to have a particular hunger for it at the moment.
But here’s a bit of good news for those who’ve already devoted the time and resources to learning everything they can about blockchain, cryptocurrency, and associated technologies: Jobs that involve blockchain have a median salary of $97,000, with six-figure compensation easily unlockable with just a few years of experience. In addition, virtually all of the jobs that currently ask for blockchain skills request a bachelor’s degree, which means you don’t have to earn ultra-advanced degrees in order to land that job interview.
Blockchain has many uses beyond cryptocurrency, of course; over the past few years, companies have explored using it in everything from “smart contracting” to cybersecurity. If you’re interested in learning more, experts advise exploring online courses such as Udacity and Coursera, as well as blockchain-specific sites such as Bitcoin.org.
The best thing to do “is decide which blockchain technology you are going to learn first,” Dr. Stylianos Kampakis, CEO of The Tesseract Academy, advises about blockchain-related education. “Ethereum is a good bet as it’s very popular. I wouldn’t start by paying for a course. I would look towards free courses. If someone is already proficient at writing code, learning to code blockchain is not difficult.”
Companies’ use of blockchain is often incredibly specific, so it’ll also help to have an idea of what you want to do with any knowledge you build up. For example, the needs of finance are wildly different than in cybersecurity. As with so many projects, you can also build up experience and knowledge by helping out with open-source blockchain projects on GitHub and other repositories.