12 blockchain-related jobs to consider in 2020

Blockchain skills are increasingly being sought after for jobs connected to legacy IT systems.

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For more than a year, blockchain management and development has topped some lists of the hottest skills in the IT job market, and thousands of blockchain jobs in the U.S. are now up for grabs.

According to a mid-year salary survey from Janco Associates, a management consulting firm that conducts regular salary surveys, blockchain development and management positions remain in high demand.

As the distributed ledger technology matures and corporate uptake increases, blockchain is becoming intrinsically linked to more traditional roles in the enterprise architecture and creating a new set of job classifications.

Janco Associates said it has for the first time added a "Blockchain DLT" career path to its IT Job Family Classification System, and it is also linked to all other IT job families.

cw all job families with blockchain diagram by janco associates 2400x2150 Janco Associates Inc.

"Positions that tangentially are impacted by blockchain are in high demand. It is for that reason that we included them in this bundle and analysis of compensation," said Janco CEO Victor Janulaitis. "As this technology progresses, we believe that ERP and enterprise architecture disciplines will merge with blockchain. And we think that is not too far into the future."

ERP vendors such as Oracle and IBM have already built APIs to connect their legacy platforms with blockchain electronic ledgers for use in business applications such as supply chain management. Database systems act as "oracles" for blockchain, feeding data from legacy systems into the peer-to-peer distributed ledger.

During the next two to three years, all major ERP and CRM vendors will offer blockchain capabilities as an add-on feature for their software and SaaS products, according to a new report from Gartner.

"First, blockchain applications hit at the core of the IT Infrastructure," Janulaitis said. "In the process, there are scores of places where confidential and sensitive information could be potentially exposed or hacked. The CSO and ERP managers are instrumental in seeing that enterprises comply with mandated security and privacy requirements. As such, they need to be actively involved in both the development and operation of blockchain systems."

From October, 2018 through September, 2019, there were 54,971 job postings for blockchain-related skills, a 73% growth rate over the previous year, according to job data analytics firm Burning Glass Technologies. In the U.S., the median salary for software developers/engineers with blockchain-related skills is $105,624, according to Burning Glass.

The job of developing blockchain distributed ledgers for businesses was recently ranked first among the top 20 fastest-growing job skills by freelance employment website Upwork — and postings for workers with those skills grew more than 200% last year.

The most promising jobs include more than just developers and engineers, according to research by BusinessStudent.com — a site that reviews business schools and their courses. Blockchain project managers, quality engineers, legal consultants and web designers also rounded out some of the top positions in the blockchain job market.

Jobs now linked to blockchain skills include not only CSO and vice president of security and architecture, but also data scientist, database administrator, database manager, director of e-commerce, enterprise architecture manager and ERP project manager, according to Janco Associates. Salaries top out at nearly $200,000, but most are more typically around the $150,000 to $175,000 range.

Additionally, blockchain specific job titles include blockchain analyst, blockchain project manager, blockchain architecture manager and, of course, blockchain developer.

cw blockchain related salaries chart by janco associates 2400x2150 Janco Associates inc.

Technology professionals seeking a blockchain-related job should have a good understanding of what security and data privacy requirements are within the industry where they are looking. For example, if the enterprise is in the healthcare field, then HIPAA compliance is important.

In addition, if the enterprise does business with the EU or California, the ramifications of GDPR and/or the California Consumer Protection Act (CaCPA) are key considerations in the development and operation of technology-based systems, according to Janulaitis. Compliance will be more of an issue in 2020 than this year, with the new CaCPA mandates that go into effect on January 1, 2020.

"With the advent of access to data by non-enterprise employees, the risk of exposure of confidential and PII data is significantly increased," Janulaitis said. "In many cases the interview process will address the knowledge of the job seekers in those areas. A nonresponse or lack of knowledge in those areas could be the deciding factor in the job seekers' ability to qualify for the position."

Copyright © 2019 IDG Communications, Inc.

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