What would your company do if it had a brand new way to manage payroll, onboarding, and every other human resources process?
Blockchain technology is less than ten years old, but tech companies, financial institutions, and world governments alike are already flinching at its potential. The popular soundbyte is that this transformative system is a “new internet” that moves value instead of information, so it’s begun trickling into a number of disparate industries to redefine their processes.
It’s with good reason: the blockchain is especially adept at handling business processes that are heavy with people, data, time, and risk. Human resources departments are rife with them, so the blockchain has already begun driving a new normal for the industry. Payroll, hiring, training, and credential certification are starting to be reinvented with the blockchain in mind.
It’s early days in the story of blockchain-powered HR, but major changes are on the horizon that hold lasting implications for how the world’s human resources departments will operate. Now is the time for them to be paying attention.
Here are four of the latest events in the blockchain space that all modern HR professionals should be aware of.
1️⃣ MIT is offering students a blockchain-enabled diploma
The prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology serves as academic home for some of the brightest minds in America, and it’s begun piloting a diploma system that is certified by a digital key. This means that students can “own” their digital diploma in the same sense that they might “own” their cryptocurrency holdings. It’s a tamper-proof certificate that they’ve actually completed their courses.
They still receive a standard physical diploma, of course, but their digitally verified diploma can’t be faked.
2️⃣ Two companies have partnered to validate resumes on the blockchain
Recruit Technologies and Ascribe are building a system that uses the blockchain to make sure people don’t lie on their resume. As work credentials start moving from paper to the digital space, these guys take over the process of collecting official certificates that represent a job applicant’s qualifications. This means recruiters can browse incoming resumes with total confidence that they reflect true experience. They get a comprehensive, verified resume instead of one full of fluff.
It will be a profound countermeasure against fraud in the job application process.
3️⃣ Oracle applied for a blockchain patent that will be useful for managing workflow efficiency
Whether it’s onboarding a new employee or collectively seeing a team meet its targets and deadlines, Oracle has been developing a blockchain system that keeps everyone on the same page. Once perfected, it will keep perfect records on how each employee contributes to a particular work process. This record can’t be changed or duplicated, so it works to smoothly ensure that a project moves onto the next step only after every previous step is complete.
Blockchain’s characteristics are valuable here — there’s no threat of unpermitted access or data manipulation.
4️⃣ Early adopters are already using the blockchain for payroll and employee identity
Current payroll systems aren’t very robust by comparison to cryptocurrency technology, which operates without borders or middlemen. That’s why a host of early adopters are already leaning into blockchain tech for use in HR, according to an October 2017 report by CompTIA. Blockchain technology is simply too useful for digital identity, asset management, and payments for companies to ignore it.
Companies like Bitwage and ChronoBank use it today to handle worldwide crypto payments for workers. Contractors and employees can get paid quickly in their preferred currency without interfacing through a bank, no matter where they are. It’s not only faster and better, but it eliminates errors at the same time.
Cryptocurrency gets a lot of media attention for volatile swings in value, but it is underpinned by a completely stable piece of technology with other uses. It’s a type of stability that will be a breath of fresh air for HR departments around the world. This development is ramping up slowly — when the world’s HR experts convened at a Las Vegas conference in October last year, they expected blockchain to be mainstream within the industry in the next 18–24 months.
The blockchain market is predicted to reach $60.7 billion by 2024. Are your hiring managers paying attention? Will they be prepared?
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