Beyond finance, opportunities to use blockchain technologies are mostly limited only by our imagination. Educational records stored in the blockchain could be accessed by data owners (students) without the need to ask the educational body in question for a transcript; health records kept in the blockchain would be sharable (by the owner) and secure; and voting records could be inaccessible to outsiders.
Of course, that’s assuming we learn how to understand it. At the moment, most Australian employees and entrepreneurs don’t; just one reason RMIT online has started offering courses aimed at narrowing our skills gap in the field.
For Peter Jackowski, who recently graduated from RMIT Online’s Developing Blockchain Strategy course, study helped him to “navigate the hype” around blockchain.
“I now understand that whilst blockchain has long-term disruptive potential, in the short-term the best way to unlock value is through driving operational efficiencies.”
This immediate benefit in today’s workplaces is one reason Souness believes strategists, technologists and all those in the C-suite should gain an understanding of how blockchain works.
Given its hot position in the market, it’s unsurprising that Blockchain developers are already in high demand.
“For every Blockchain developer there is something like 14 jobs available,” says Souness.
For others, understanding where the future lies will have a payoff in terms of a market advantage for the businesses which become its early adopters, and provide benefits for the individuals who can ‘explain’ the technology to their colleagues.
“Right now, strategically everyone at an executive level should be starting to get their heads around blockchain,” Souness says.
Start with a short course like those at RMIT Online. Many of these can stack into an MBA or a technically-focused postgraduate course if you are interested in further study.
Employees who are willing to ‘be curious’ and explore blockchain technologies and their possible applications will soon be in demand. Those who start now – including those in executive roles – will likely have an early advantage in the job market of the future.
While studying blockchain, use the opportunity to develop a project or strategy for a business or organisation you are involved in. Then, explain the technology to others. “There’s a real opportunity here for people to be change agents in their business or government department,” says Souness.