LinkedIn Learning, the educational portal of the world’s largest professional network, has identified blockchain as the most in-demand “hard skill” for 2020, pushing cloud computing into second place.
The list, which is updated each year, identifies trending hard skills – the skills which are most in demand for businesses looking to seize new opportunities.
The in-demand hard skills have been curated from LinkedIn’s trending jobs on the platform, which highlight an “increasing awareness and demand for the wider applications of this skill”.
Interestingly, in 2019, blockchain didn’t feature on the list at all, with cloud computing and artificial intelligence taking the top spots.
The blog post says that blockchain started through humble beginnings in 2009 to support cryptocurrencies, eventually evolving into a way to validate and authorise data through a secure ledger.
Citing a small supply of available professionals to serve this growing industry, LinkedIn recommends a number of guides to get started learning the basics of blockchain technology.
It’s unclear why blockchain has suddenly appeared on the list – and taken top spot at that – but it could be a sign that distributed ledger technology is finally shaking off the stigma surrounding the wild west cryptocurrency markets and moving into mainstream business processes.
Other experts weigh in on lack of blockchain talent
International technology company IBM has also expressed concern over the lack of top blockchain talent, calling it a “significant inhibitor” to distributed ledger technology adoption within existing companies.
In 2018, Coin Rivet reported that demand for blockchain experts had grown 2,000% year-on-year, according to freelance marketplace UpWork.com.
At the time, salaries for blockchain professionals ranged from $36,000 to over $200,000 for senior positions.
In the last year, a multitude of existing pioneer companies have launched blockchain-based products or solutions, legitimising the industry’s reputation.
For example, international remittance provider MoneyGram has been working alongside Ripple to open new cross-border payment gateways using blockchain.
Similarly, Samsung has partnered with Syniverse to enable blockchain-powered mobile payments, showing the extent of blockchain innovation worldwide.
Also injecting increased legitimacy and demand for blockchain is a new focus on central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), which have become a priority for governments in many nations including China, the USA, and Australia – further increasing the demand for top blockchain talent.
You can read more about blockchain jobs here.