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We’ve probably all heard of bitcoins and many of us will have heard of the technology behind it – blockchains, however until now they have both very much remained in the world of currency and finance news.

Today, although the technology is still in its infancy, it was invented by the mysterious and anonymous “Satoshi Nakamoto” in 2009, we are beginning to see it have an impact on staffing and recruitment and it’s promising big things.

Indeed, a recent report by PwC looking at what impacts blockchain technology could have on HR and staffing found that the effects will be “profound and pervasive.”

So, what is blockchain technology?

A blockchain is a digital database record keeping system. Each entry and its details are validated and recorded across a network of decentralised computers.

The database records are called blocks and they can only be shared with those involved and everyone has to verify the accuracy of the information before distribution.

The chain happens as each block of information records the block of information before, which are timestamped and kept in sync, preventing any tampering or altering.

The blockchain is stored on a decentralised computer for security and users can only edit the blockchain if they possess the private keys necessary to write on the file.


So where can blockchains impact staffing?

  • Verifying details – blockchain technology can offer significant benefits with the challenging and time-consuming task of verifying candidate details. It allows an individual’s CV to be pre-verified by the candidate’s educators, former employers and accreditors, saving recruiters significant time and cost. Candidates can allow access to all their different jobs and work experience, employment history, qualifications, accreditations, on-the job training and education and most importantly recruiters know it has been checked and verified.At the end of last year the UK’s leading IT Jobs Board, announced they would be partnering with the world’s first blockchain career verification platform APPII. This ground-breaking move allows candidates to apply for roles using CVs verified by blockchains and ensures recruiters and employers know that the information is trustworthy and authenticated.
    It is also possible that blockchain technology can become a permanent record of an employee’s achievements and the record can move with them from job to job throughout their career. Information could include skills gained, goals met, pay increases and bonuses received giving a true employment history, that cannot be changed.Blockchains could also make recruiters jobs easier as the employee records can allow them to build a candidate profile that allows for a better cultural fit and prevents any data from being removed.Recruiting from overseas could become simpler as right to work and permit documents can be held on the blockchain.
  • Improving the candidate experience and saving time – blockchain technology can allow a candidate’s employment details to be accessed quickly, speeding up the application process and allowing recruiters extra time to focus their energies in making the candidate experience even better.

While blockchain technologies clearly have tremendous potential for use within recruitment and staffing arena, it’s adoption is still very much in the early stages. However, the technology is there, and it is ready to make serious impacts and potentially cause quite a stir. It is definitely a case of when it will happen rather than if it will happen.