Effective implementation of the skill development policy would help shape the workforce of the future
Organisations around the world are actively working with blockchain technology. Some of them have made significant progress and are implementing blockchain-based solutions to solve their business problems.
Others are at various stages of prototype development to verify whether blockchain technology can solve their business/organisational problems or think through the enormous possibilities that can be offered.
Blockchain technology is a key driver to automate and deliver trust and is also open to all for adoption.
The Covid-19 pandemic has disrupted many perceivably steady businesses across the world over the last seven months. It has also accelerated many changes, the digital transformation is one of them.
Earlier, such strategies would be a part of boardroom discussions for many organisations but have now become a high-priority agenda for business leaders.
As a result, many organisations are transforming to run their operations digitally, and more importantly, to stay relevant in the new normal.
Though the digital transformation of businesses has its advantages, trust is quite fragile in the digital world.
Digitalisation comes with the risks of data being tampered by adversaries and the repudiation of electronic transactions.
Blockchain addresses this key issue of trust in digital transformation. As businesses are undergoing further digital transformation in the pandemic-affected world, they are also discovering the relevance of blockchain technology to build trust in business ecosystems.
To understand the role blockchain technology will play in the next ten years, PwC recently conducted a global analysis across the larger economies and sectors.
The PwC team identified all major use cases of blockchain technology that businesses are seriously thinking about and classified those into five major groups –provenance, payments and financial instruments, identity, contracts and dispute resolution, and customer engagement.
The team analysed the potential of each of these groups to contribute to the gross domestic product (GDP) over the next ten-year period.
According to this analysis, the global GDP is expected to get a boost of USD 1.76 trillion over the next decade due to the adoption of blockchain technology. This boost will account for 1.4 percent of the global GDP by 2030.
More than 10 percent of the global digital infrastructure is expected to be built using blockchain technology during the next decade. Apart from this, blockchain technology is also expected to create significant employment opportunities.
According the PwC analysis, more than 41 million jobs are going to be created globally by 2030 due to organisations adopting blockchain technology.
According to the PwC analysis, China and US will get higher economic benefits than other countries, worth USD 440 billion and USD 407 billion, respectively.
However, more jobs will be created in China and India. According to the PwC analysis, adoption of blockchain technology will create 11.4 million and 3.2 million new jobs in China and India, respectively, during the next decade.
Bangladesh is an emerging economy and has witnessed a very high GDP growth rate in the past couple of years.
According to the Asian Development Bank (ADB), Bangladesh's GDP grew at 8.2 percent in 2019.
Despite the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, Bangladesh is expected to sustain a positive growth rate of 5.2 percent in 2020 and 6.8 percent in 2021, according to the ADB projections.
It is expected that Bangladesh will sustain this high growth rate throughout the decade.
Blockchain technology is going to play a pivotal role in Bangladesh's growth journey. It will also enhance the job potential of Bangladesh's workforce, particularly the young technology professionals who will be an integral part of this growth journey.
However, Bangladesh needs to plan strategically to seize this opportunity. As the demand for these new technology-oriented jobs takes off, there should be a sufficient number of skilled professionals to join the workforce and meet that demand.
Such professionals should not only be adequately proficient in using blockchain technology but should also be adept at developing the skills required to work in organisations undergoing digital transformation.
A significant section of the existing workforce needs to upskill themselves to work in digital environments in the coming decade.
The National Skills Development Authority of Bangladesh (NSDA) is the apex body that is working at formulating the country's skills development policy and executing the programmes for achieving the policy goals.
The national skills development policy outlines the objective, scope of work and ongoing monitoring methods. Effective implementation of the skill development policy would help shape the workforce of the future.
Many organisations in Bangladesh have already been transforming themselves through various initiatives and are becoming more digitally capable in the process.
In the coming years, their digital transformation will help them outperform their competitors in the market. The quest to outperform competitors will motivate the existing workforce of organisations to become individual best performers and many of them will accomplish such professional goals by upskilling themselves, and by developing digital acumen, including blockchain readiness.
The skills development sector needs to be ready to cater to such demand for upskilling in the coming years.
The Blockchain Olympiad Bangladesh (BCOLBD) has been active in promoting skills development in blockchain technology by organising business case competitions, training sessions, workshops, conferences and hackathons.
In 2020, the Bangladesh Blockchain Olympiad worked extensively in selecting the national teams and mentoring them to prepare for the International Blockchain Olympiad. The teams representing Bangladesh won two of the total six medals in the International Blockchain Olympiad. Similar efforts would help develop blockchain technology-related capabilities for talented students and young professionals.
It should be noted that the development of blockchain skills is required not only for the programming of blockchain technology.
The skills will be required for the development, implementation and operations of the whole gamut of components, including blockchain infrastructure, solutions and management of benefits for the stakeholders.
Such development will cut across all sectors and require blockchain-enabled industry skills, as well as citizen services delivery skills.
The workforce in private and government organisations needs to be upskilled to build this capability. Simultaneously, new entrants in the workforce need to participate productively in blockchain-enabled environments.
A comprehensive plan to further develop and focus on blockchain technology will help all stakeholders across organisations realise blockchain's capabilities.
Arijit Chakraborti is Partner at PwC. The views expressed here are personal.