Blockchain will affect recruitment advertising


By Richard Badley

The fact of the matter is, blockchain isn’t the sexiest of topics. In fact, if you’ve got this far you’re doing well. It’s also not helped by it often being associated to ‘dodgy’ cryptocurrencies, which in turn are still confused as fake money. Both of these cause people to be a little cautious of it.

Park that thought. Blockchain is here, and it’s not dodgy. It’s an advanced recording system that will stay. I do not suggest that this is a measure of guaranteed success, but venture capital and investment firms have pummelled billions of dollars into blockchain technology over the last few years. There is a very definite appetite for it.

What is blockchain?

Explained very simply, a ‘block’ is a transaction. And all the transactions that take place with a blockchain are, you guessed it, linked together in a chain.

Imagine a ledger. A financial record written down.

Historically, ledgers have been private. And the responsibility and accountability of them sits with the owner. They are also usually only shared with people who the owner wants to share them with.

Now think of blockchain as a ledger, but one that is open or accessible. It’s visible to all who need to see it, and people can see all the transactions within it. Across the whole chain. So we can see what’s happened, when and where. What has changed hands, for what.

It doesn’t mean that the parties necessarily need to be named, they can be anonymous or pseudonymous, but the transaction will be visible.

It is this idea that makes the whole concept of blockchain and the code underpinning it so exciting.

Fundamentally, with an open ledger, there are three core benefits:

– Security

– Transparency

– Speed

The reason blockchain is so secure is because if there is a change made at any single point in the chain, everyone’s ledger gets updated and reflects that change. All the way along. So everyone will know what’s happened, when.

Of course, there have been publicised breaches of security lately. But these are more around cryptocurrencies being stolen from owners, rather than the chain itself being ‘broken’. To break the actual chain would take some serious hacking, you would have to get into everyone’s ledger and change the same thing – it’s a massive task.

Why will it affect recruitment advertising?

I personally used to think it only really mattered to people who traded bitcoin. But really, it could affect anyone who trades anything.

Therefore, if we can track something through its entire sales path, and understand who paid what and when, we will know what margins are applied.

Assuming these same principles could be applied to anything that is transacted, including media and inventory, it will mean transparency will ultimately be forced, rather than based on choice.

For what it’s worth, I don’t think blockchain is a reason to be honest and transparent. We should be that anyway, but I am suggesting it will change the supply chain. And due to that, how a lot of businesses make their money.