The increased popularity of blockchain, the technology behind cryptocurrency, has resulted in new jobs in the tech industry. Research from employment search engine Indeed shows that the number of postings referencing blockchain, bitcoin, and cryptocurrency has increased by a staggering 621% since 2015. The site also reports an even higher increase of 1,065% more searches mentioning these terms. (Forbes) As companies continue to embrace this new technology, there is an increase in demand for candidates who have experience working with it or the desire to learn.
Though blockchain is most commonly associated with cryptocurrency, there are various uses for the technology. Blockchain’s ability to store all the changes made to its data makes it difficult to hack, which could prove to be an asset for different areas of business. According to Derek Martin, a Cloud Solutions Architect at Microsoft, the four industries that he believes could best employ the use of blockchain technology are finance, retail and manufacturing, healthcare, and government.
Dominic Tancredi, Co-Founder of product agency Dom & Tom, says that his company plans to support the professional growth of team members that are sharing their research and experiments in the field of Blockchain. “I could see us having a dedicated team in 2-3 years as the technology stack grows in adoption and requires specialists,” he says.
Daniel Mason, VP of Business Development at Springcoin agrees, “I expect this explosion in demand to continue to grow throughout 2018 as blockchain continues to shift from its niche positioning to a mainstream technology trend that many startups and larger companies will be pursuing.”
Technical Roles Using Blockchain Increasing
According to Velas Commerce founder Hannah Rosenberg, blockchain is a candidate’s market. “What I have seen is that there is currently much more demand for blockchain and smart contract developers than there is supply,” she says. “An experienced developer with even a little blockchain exposure can get picked up quite quickly to work on very interesting projects.”
Mason, can also attest to the high demand. “Engineers with relevant blockchain experience are extremely hard to find, as the technology is relatively new but has exploded in popularity over the past year,” he states.
The good news is that expert knowledge of Blockchain is not always a requirement. Companies are looking for candidates who are genuinely interested in the technology and willing to learn it as well as candidates who can contribute right from the start.
Tech Jobs in Blockchain Beyond Cryptocurrency
Looking to get involved in blockchain? You’ll need strong back-end skills, knowledge of the fundamentals of cryptography—the computerized encoding and decoding of information— and a genuine interest in blockchain technology.
According to Gavin Pacini, Senior Consultant in Deloitte's EMEA Blockchain Lab, agility and the ability to adapt are also required when working with a new technology such as blockchain. “It’s not an established platform so it’s a real learning curve. We’ve had cases where we’ve had to dig through the source code of open source projects which normally isn’t required when using existing technologies but with blockchain, we don’t have a choice,” he says.
Due to blockchain’s growth in popularity, a variety of online courses and certifications are now available courtesy of IBM, Blockchain Council, and Udemy, to name a few. Many of these courses are offered at little to no cost. Another great way to build your understanding of the technology? Local Meetups! Tech in Motion has a variety of upcoming blockchain events coming down the pipeline.
Click here for upcoming Tech in Motion events on emerging technologies like this.
Once you have built out your understanding and required skills, be sure to look out for available blockchain jobs. Here are a few examples of available jobs:
- Blockchain Engineer
- Blockchain Developer
- Mining Technician
- Full-Stack Developer
- Bitcoin Front-End Developer
- Blockchain Project Manager
- Data Scientist
The rising popularity of blockchain has created many new opportunities for professionals, startups, and enterprise companies alike. As this technology proves to be useful for more than cryptocurrency, individuals with experience and a passion for blockchain will continuously be in high demand.
With the amount of Meetup members and Meetup groups growing rapidly, especially of late, it’s important to know how to best utilize these unique and specialized gatherings for career fulfillment - use these tips to maximize the value you get from attending and networking!
“What do you love?” asks Meetup.com as you view its homepage. Just below, the website encourages users to “Do more of it with Meetup.” Based on Meetup’s own About page, there are approximately 35.3 million members of the website that belong to any one of just over 300,000 groups across the globe. Are you a part of that 35.3 million? Perhaps you should consider it. We have written numerous times about the value of face-to-face networking in our blogs and it should come as no surprise that within the recruiting field, we here at Jobspring Partners consistently see that the most important hiring decisions are made only after a face-to-face meeting has happened.
Different from other events and event series, Meetup groups tend to be very connected to – often born from – the local ecosystem, providing a consistently relevant audience that also offers the opportunity to grow your personal network with people in your own industry.
To top it off, the Meetup community is rapidly growing! For these reasons, it’s important to keep your in-person networking skills as sharp as possible. Here are some tips to reap the maximum reward from these groups and events.
Before the Event
Know the group. How many people consider themselves members of said group? What are the key goals that the group looks to accomplish? Some groups exist to solve problems, some to facilitate networking opportunities, and still others to provide additional content sharing through panel discussions or demo opportunities. It’s important to identify which camp this group belongs to in order to provide necessary context and a framework of how the night may go. For instance, if the group doesn’t do events focused on product demos from local companies, it may not be the best event for pitching your brand-new startup idea. The audience of the group simply may not be who you're looking to get in front of.
Secondly, know the event. If you RSVP on the Meetup page and show up without any other knowledge of the agenda for the evening, you may end up incredibly turned-around once the event begins. Will there be a speaker session or panel discussion or is the event an extended networking period? Having this knowledge beforehand helps color your goals for the evening. If most of the evening is blocked-off for a panel discussion, it’s unlikely that there will be a large portion of time dedicated to networking. Logically, if your aim is to collect business cards, you will most likely experience a difficult time of it if there are only 15 minutes before and after the event to speak with other attendees.
Finally, know yourself. it’s important to set some tangible goals. Whether that means your goal is to leave with a set amount of business cards, shake a certain number of hands that evening, or leave with the email address of a manager that will be hiring for a role in which you’re interested, having preset goals is important for holding yourself accountable. If possible, set yourself three types of goals: a networking goal, a learning goal, and an interaction goal. This way, you are constantly working towards accomplishing something and feel incentivized to meet, learn, and connect.
During the Event
You’ve elevatored up to correct floor and you’re standing in line to be checked in. You see how many people have already arrived: so many new faces and so many members potentially to be added to your network. What topics do you plan to discuss? Consider bringing a few pre-prepared questions for the people with whom you will be interacting. There’s no shame in having three or four questions that you cycle through during your conversations – it’s much better to be prepared.
Now that the networking has begun, it’s easy to lose track of the time as you meet all sorts of interesting people and begun discussing a myriad of topics. It’s important to note that you should constantly be cognizant of the goals you set beforehand and how each conversation is moving you closer towards those goals. More likely than not, a lot of your goals can be boiled-down to something very generic like “learning”, and this is great! Learning should certainly be one of your primary goals at these events. Provided you can either learn something new or share some of your unique knowledge with the audience, you can chalk that conversation up as a win. But it’s important to have a back-up plan in case that isn’t happening.
For example, what if you feel trapped in a conversation as it begins to derail a bit from the topics you were hoping to discuss, and you no longer feel yourself gaining value? Have no fear about politely excusing yourself from a conversation, most people will understand if you feel the need to step away. The night is full of opportunity to spend time with other individuals, just make sure you are respectful to the conversation at hand as you leave. Similarly, if you find yourself wanting to enter an ongoing conversation, don't be afraid to jump in when the time feels right. Be ready to calmly introduce yourself if the conversation lulls a bit and take the initiative to add something to the discussion to keep up momentum.
After the Event
When the evening has wrapped up, you’ll have one more thing to do to make the most out of your Meetup experience: follow-up. You can certainly let this wait until the following morning, but hold yourself accountable to do any follow-up you deem important within 24 hours. If you don’t follow up soon enough, or worse, don’t follow up at all, you risk blending in with any one of the many people that someone else spoke to. To prevent being reduced to a Meetup amalgamation, keep your follow-up short and sweet, while also personalized; make sure to add a sentence that reminds the recipient of you or the conversation you shared. It’s also recommended you connect on platforms simply beyond e-mail. Luckily, social media platforms offer a variety of opportunities to friend, follow, or connect.
The conversation doesn’t just begin and end at the event; almost every Meetup group has both a homepage where members can post discussion points or an actual discussion board to ask questions, post about similar events on the horizon, or continue to connect. Make use of these tools because the attendees of any given event are only a small percentage of the group at large. By using the group’s webpage, you’re much more likely to get the attention of other members of the community, those who couldn’t attend, and those who simply aren’t quite as active.
The Community Is Waiting with Open Arms
Now that we’ve given you the tools to make the best use of your time at the next tech-focused Meetup you attend, the next step is on you. Create yourself a Meetup profile, circle a few potentially interesting events over the next few weeks and make time in your schedule to attend! If you need a bit of help finding the most-relevant local Meetup groups, maybe start with Tech in Motion. Although we may be biased, Jobspring Partners has worked to create an inclusive, generalist community that hosts frequent events that offer something for everyone.
You’ve completed your college degree or spent endless weeks learning to code in a hardcore boot camp – congratulations! But now what? While everyone’s career path will be unique, and there’s no step-by-step guide to getting you to a C-Level position within x-amount of years, there are definitely some key career moves you can make to set yourself up for the success you’re looking for. If you aren’t a recent or about-to-be graduate – well, it’s never too late to do these for you career.
Below are 5 things you need to do for your career as an IT graduate on the job hunt:
Build Your Brand
As basic as career advice gets, yet too many personal brands are just that: basic. Don’t be. Update your LinkedIn profile to include an individual summary, a work or project list, and any appropriate skills. Nowadays, this is one of the major ways recruiters and hiring managers connect with you about a job you may be the right fit for.
Also, get on GitHub. For many hiring managers this is a 'nice-to-have' for more experienced talent, but for junior engineers it is crucial. Other than school projects, it may be the only thing a manager has to look at that represents your skills.
Connect with a Dedicated Recruiter
It’s almost always free to work with a recruiter. Find a dedicated technical recruiter who specializes in positions you are interested in and who understands your skill set. Even if they can’t offer you a position right off the bat, inquire about interview advice, resume tips, or keeping in touch for any opportunities that may arise.
Contact a local Jobspring Partners to connect with a recruiter about current job openings.
Network and Get Noticed
If you haven’t tried out the networking tactic for your job search, step out of your comfort zone and add it to your to-do list. Meetups and networking events specifically for tech professionals, such as Tech in Motion, are a great way to get your name out in front of an influential group of people.
When you are vocal about your employment status, you may find your next mentor, or even your next job, at an event or job fair, so make sure to put your best foot forward.
Find the next free Tech in Motion event near you and start networking.
You will hear it over and over again, but keeping up with the newest technology is crucial in any market. Every company wants someone who has experience with the trendy new technology that very few other engineers have, so being ahead of the curve will set you apart. While you’re a new grad with some time on your hands, this is a great opportunity to make sure you’re working with the technology that will get you the career you’re looking for.
Just because you have been on the market for a few weeks, doesn’t mean you should lose motivation. Great things take time! Every company has different needs. You just need to find one that fits your criteria and vice versa, and sometimes that takes time. Don’t settle for a job where you’ll quit a few months in. Consider a contract job where you can gain experience on a project basis while you wait for the right opportunity.
Bottom line: building your reputation in a way that consistently advances your career will take time. These tips will point you in the right direction, and hopefully, help you find a job that you truly will be passionate about. By staying up-to-date with technology, networking, and building your own brand, your job search will be more effective.
You might also be interested in this career advice:
Written by Sara Mauskopf, Director of Product at Postmates. This article was originally published on TechinMotionevents.com.
Now that I’ve been at Postmates for almost 8 months, a lot of people have asked me the difference between Product Management at a larger company like Twitter where I worked from July 2010 to July 2014, or Google where I worked from 2007 to 2010, and at a startup like Postmates. I too was curious before I decided to join a startup.
So first, let me define Product Management at a larger tech company. As a Product Manager, you are responsible for defining a roadmap for your area and ensuring that roadmap meets the goals or objectives you set forth for your team, which should align with the goals of the company. You’re responsible for ensuring the items on the roadmap are prioritized, and that there are clear product specifications for those items. Finally, you work closely with the team to build, launch, collect data/feedback, and iterate to a standard of exceptional quality. Through all phases, including planning, you are working closely with engineering, design, and other key stakeholders across the company. And because everyone looks to you as a leader for your product area, it is important you are inspiring those around you to do their greatest work by setting the right context, establishing a sense of urgency, and working collaboratively.
Looking for a product or project manager role? Check out the job board to see if any positions are a good match.
As it turns out, all those fundamentals remain the same at a startup. In fact, the fundamentals are so important that having experience at a larger company as a Product Manager is one of the best forms of training for startup Product Management. But on top of all that, at a startup you have responsibilities and challenges that do not exist at a larger company. If you are thinking of making the transition from big company PM to startup PM, here are some things you’ll want to know.
1. You’ll often have to do things you have never done before and probably suck at.
Working at a startup, you quickly discover where your personal weaknesses are because on a daily basis you need to do something you have never done before and probably are not good at yet. Executing out of your area of familiarity manifests through needing to do something that larger companies have a person or team dedicated to doing. For example, at a startup you will most certainly not have a user research team that helps you assess how your feature will be received in the market. If you want user research or early feedback on a prototype, you will have to find and interview users yourself. Although it can be daunting to roll up your sleeves and try something you have never done before, it’s also the fastest way to learn how to do it. If you are lucky, you may discover a talent you didn’t know you had!
2. You’ll need gymnast levels of flexibility.
Imagine any company has 5 “fire drills” a quarter. In other words, 5 times per quarter, the average company has to quickly react to something in the market, change a plan due to unexpected data or user feedback, or get in a war room and really focus on a hard problem that has not been given enough attention. At a larger company, those 5 instances are spread out between a lot of people and teams, so you personally probably only experience a "fire drill" at most once per quarter. At a startup, any fire drill usually involves most of the product, design, and engineering team because the team is so small. It’s important at a startup that you can quickly tackle these fire drills, avoid getting thrown off course, and reprioritize your roadmap when needed. Most importantly, you need to mentally be able to deal with plans changing more frequently. It’s ok!
3. You’ll do less talking the talk, more walking the walk.
At a startup, there is nowhere to hide. People who can step up to the plate and tackle the challenges will shine and get even more responsibility. Underperformers who can’t cut it will quickly make their way out. In addition to not needing to worry much about whether your individual performance will be recognized, if you ask any good PM at a larger company they will tell you they spend some percentage of their time carving out territory for their team, evangelizing the great results of their team, and other activities generally thought of as “managing up”. It’s not because large companies are full of evil political people, it’s just because when you have a lot of people working in one place it’s easy to get lost in the noise if you aren’t making it clear what your team works on and the results they have achieved.
You don’t have to worry about that much at a startup. Now, I spend my time working and moving the company forward rather than evangelizing my team internally. With fewer people to communicate with, you can spend more time doing the work, which is great because there is a lot of work to do.
Jobspring is a proud sponsor of Tech in Motion events. Connect with companies like Postmates at Tech in Motion - find an event near you here.
About the Author
Sara Mauskopf joined on-demand delivery company Postmates in July to build and run its Product Management team. Postmates is transforming the way local goods move around a city by connecting customers with local couriers who purchase and deliver goods from any restaurant or store in a city in minutes. Prior to Postmates, Sara was a Group Product Manager at Twitter, having joined the company in 2010. She started her career at YouTube and Google as a Partner Technology Manager (a role that's a mix of partnerships and engineering). Sara graduated with a bachelors degree in Computer Science from MIT.