Can India bridge the blockchain talent gap?
Blockchain technology will soon play a key role in the global economy. More than 10% of the world’s GDP will be stored on blockchain systems by 2025, according to the World Economic Forum. By eliminating the need for intermediaries, experts believe that blockchain technology can disrupt the global economy. DeFi has already impacted the fiat money and the BFSI sector and NFTs are paving the way for the creator economy.
According to Reports and Data, a market research firm, the global blockchain market is growing at a CAGR of 66%. By 2028, it is estimated to reach $172.9 Bn from a meager $3 Bn in 2020. After the great recession of 2008, global trade slowed down partly due to a lack of transparency and interoperability. According to World Bank, blockchain will drive the global demand for transparent and secure payment systems across financial institutions. Blockchain technology is also set to disrupt several other sectors, including the direct-to-consumer (D2C) market, healthcare, education, supply chain management, cloud computing, real estate, stock trading, and government services.
But is India, popularly known as the talent pool of the world, ready for a blockchain spurt? In other words, do we have an adequate number of trained professionals to take care of our new-age technology requirements?
The lack of talent in the blockchain space has caused an unprecedented salary boom. Lately, blockchain developers have seen a 2,000-6,000% salary hike, and are currently paid 50-100% more than what conventional developers earn. Expertise in blockchain technology is one of the most sought-after skill sets. Traditional IT/ITeS companies, such as TCS, Infosys, Accenture, Tech Mahindra, Wipro, and Infotech, are now keen to hire blockchain developers.
Globally, India is known for its talent pool of software engineers. However, the country has taken too long to recognize the potential of blockchain and the need for trained professionals in the arena. According to Belong, a Bengaluru-based hiring solutions firm, only 0.25% of India’s software workforce is blockchain-ready.
However, India is trying to bridge the talent gap. Leading institutions that provide certifications and post-graduate diploma courses in blockchain technology are the Indian Institute of Blockchain Technology, Hyderabad, Kerala Blockchain Academy, International Institute of Information Technology, Bangalore, IIM Calcutta, Amity University, IIT Bombay, etc. These premier institutions have also partnered with startups such as UpGrad, Great Learning, and TalentSprint to offer blockchain-based courses. However, apart from the Kerala Blockchain Academy, none of these currently provide R&D facilities in blockchain technology.
Given the current role of blockchain technology, India needs to introduce more courses and set up dedicated academies to catch up with the likes of the US and China. Spreading tech knowledge and tech education at all levels will help build the blockchain talent pool and put India in the driver’s seat in the innovative and competitive distributed ledger technology (DLT) space.