Is blockchain expertise the most desirable skill for IT contractors in 2018?

Will Astbury
by Will Astbury 26 June 2018

Now that crypto currencies have become part of the public consciousness, more organisations are recognising the disruptive opportunities created by blockchain technology.

Blockchain solutions are no longer solely the focus of financial services institutions, and the opportunities created by the technology are now being explored by a variety of sectors, including; legal, organisations that rely on supply chains, property, cloud storage, and politics through voting systems.

According to the likes of Bernard Marr, this rising interest in blockchain has led to an upsurge in desirability for specialist consultants, developers, project managers, and designers. So much so that US freelancer site Upwork ranked ‘blockchain’ number one in its list of top 20 fastest-growing skills for freelancers in Q1 2018.

Other technology skills named in the top 20 were; Microsoft Power BI (9), augmented reality (10), chatbot development (11), information security (15), Instagram API (17), machine learning (19), and AngularJS development (20).

But what does ‘blockchain expertise’ actually mean? Luka Horvat recently published an interesting article on this subject for HR Magazine, in which he suggests that blockchain engineers need a diverse range of technical competencies to truly stand out as an expert in the sector. He wrote: “A given blockchain engineer might need expertise in core open-sourced blockchains (e.g. Bitcoin), creating business networks using the Hyperledger family (an open source collection of blockchain tools), or creating public smart contracts using Solidity (a programming language designed specifically for building smart contracts).

“It is not enough to have programming expertise in one particular field. Becoming a top blockchain engineer requires a significant time investment in gaining competency and familiarity with a broad set of tools and related technologies.”

This level of complex combined knowledge is difficult to find in many organisations, even those with large in-house engineering teams. Therefore, those contractors that quickly upskilled and gained experience with blockchain technologies are easily commanding very competitive rates in the marketplace due to increased demand.

If you’re a blockchain specialist or simply have an interest in the topic, you might like to attend Crimson’s latest Architect Exchange forum in London. We have two speakers that will be debating the opportunities created by blockchain for architects. Consultants from Crimson’s IT recruitment agency will also be attending this event and they will be able to discuss the IT jobs market with you. Click the image below to find out more.

Architect Exchange Banner August 2018

Crimson is an IT consultancy, an IT solutions provider, an IT recruitment agency, and a Microsoft Gold Partner operating across the UK.

Topics: blockchain