While Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies made the headlines last year, we are finally starting to see the real technological disruptor come into the spotlight – blockchain technology.
Not only does blockchain technology make sharing data significantly more secure and shareable, it also puts data back in the hands of the users, removing the need for third party authorities.
As such, the technology will have widespread and fundamental impact on almost every single industry, particularly in education and employment.
From taking ownership of qualifications to adding legitimacy to work experience or achievements and streamlining the job application process, blockchain will ultimately create a frictionless environment for students, education institutions and businesses.
Blockchain technology, such as Ethereum, is a vast globally distributed ledger, that runs on computers around the world, and is able to store any asset of value – money, contracts, qualifications, bonds and much more.
As trust is established by network consensus, cryptography, and clever code, the need for third party authorities is removed, these assets are stored and transferred peer-to-peer (P2P) privately and securely.
While only a few educational institutions are starting to use blockchain technology, over the course of the next few years we will see this technology disrupt the global education model as we know it today.
Students today learn their syllabuses in both formal and informal environments, not just the traditional classroom; from online courses to workshops and co-learning spaces that encourage collaboration.
The historical centralised model of learning in one place across a set period of time is neither sustainable nor wanted in today’s modern, connected society.
Blockchain technology enables a complete disaggregation of education, while ensuring that accreditation still takes place by allowing the simple and quick validation and transfer of skills and credentials.
Further, blockchain technology enables students to take true ownership of their data and have of all their educational attainment verified, such as portfolios of work and qualifications, and store it in a secure and accessible place for any future education body or employer who want to see their verified credentials.
This self-sovereignty empowers students to take ownership of their data, which in the environment of education also empowers them to own their learning and ultimately future careers.
One of the most fundamental issues facing students once they leave education and enter the recruitment process is identity verification.
Through keeping all their qualifications on a blockchain platform, job candidates can prove their identity online while importantly keeping control over how their personal data is stored and managed.
Currently, students looking for jobs will have to continuously go through the identification process with multiple organisations, and in some cases multiple people or departments in one company.
This means that during each job application process, sometimes hundreds of people will have access to a candidate’s data.
With new GDPR regulations coming into force in May this year around data protection, it is important that not only candidates feel their data is secure but also that companies and recruiters have systems in place that ensure compliance.
Possibly one of the most important factors blockchain technology will bring to education and recruitment is the ability to have the assertion on a CV verified.
Stored securely on a blockchain, every qualification or experience added to a profile by a candidate will be verified by the organisation it pertains to.
For candidates, this easy to update CV which is already verified by all previous employers and educators will make it significantly easier to find and successfully apply to jobs, reducing the friction currently found in the recruitment process.
They will also enter every job application knowing their CVs will be viewed with trust from the outset and they will be judged by their qualifications and not any existing unconscious bias.
For recruiters and employers, blockchain-based CVs will make hiring the right candidate significantly easier and more cost effective.
No longer will they have to spend days verifying a candidate is who they say they are, the immutable verified CVs will have done the leg-work for them.
There is a myriad of benefits that blockchain technology will bring to all sectors across the globe, but education and employment in particular are sectors that stand to benefit exponentially.
Not only does blockchain enable students and candidates to take ownership of their work and achievements, it will also bring untold efficiencies and cost savings to educators, recruiters and employers.
This is a technology that every player in the industry cannot afford to ignore.
Gary McKay, MD of APPII
About APPII: A verification, career management and recruitment platform that is helping maximise the potential of everyone, no exceptions. The technical foundation of the platform is blockchain, and the platform is GDPR 2018 compliant.
For Educators - Engage with students and verify their academic record, and use QR code technology to catalogue accreditation
For Employers - Easily and quickly find top talent who have had their CVs pre-verified at a fraction of the cost
For Individuals - Have your CV verified and create multiple Intelligent Profiles that are set to work for you in finding that dream role