Crypto Hiring Boom: Numbers Jump 73% but Lack Diversity — What Hurdles Need to Be Overcome?

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The crypto industry hiring growth — which has exploded in the past year — continues its incredible soar, and some cities attract the most talent, according to a new study. But along with this incredible growth come growing pains, especially in terms of diversity.

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A new LinkedIn survey found that in the US, crypto hires increased 73% last year from two years earlier, according to new research. In comparison, net hires in traditional financial sectors declined 1% over the same period.

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Stuart Popejoy, CEO of Kadenatold GOBankingRates that traditional finance has suffered in the tech department for years, not just recently.

“The days when the financial world saw technology as a strategic asset ended with the ‘algo boom’ of the late 2000s, and since then the financial sector has seen technology primarily as a cost, however large, that must be reduced where possible” , says Popejoy. said. “Crypto, on the other hand, is just starting to gain the kind of power that is popping up on finance’s radar, and the technology is still new enough that it’s both strategic for the company to hire top talent and appealing to developers as well as a challenge. and learning opportunities.”

As for the cities becoming crypto hotspots for workforces, San Francisco, Austin and New York are aligning with existing technology and finance hubs, according to LinkedIn data. Other cities to round out the top 10 in 2021 include Miami, Denver, Los Angeles, Greater Chicago, Greater Boston, Greater Seattle and Atlanta, according to the data.

Colin Zarzour, Chief of Operations at Koiitold GOBankingRates that the big surprise of the past year was the rise of Miami and Austin.

“Both cities have sucked in a tremendous amount of talent — a lot of this talent left cities like San Francisco and, to a lesser extent, New York City and Los Angeles,” Zarzour said. “I do believe that digital hubs are of shocking relevance, sometimes as much as cities – I manage a team spread across the east coast of Canada, Chicago, Pakistan, Poland and China, just to name a few. fascinating that, especially in crypto, sometimes the Discord you’re a member of or the Twitter Space you’ve spoken to can shape your network just as well as geographic hubs, which is why I think even “non-hub” cities should consider to invest in high-quality public support for innovation and entrepreneurship because you are not sure where the next unicorn in crypto will be developed.

But as crypto’s hiring growth explodes, it hasn’t spread evenly. While women have always been a minority in the industry, the gap is only widening, according to LinkedIn. From 2018 to 2021, according to the data, 70% of new crypto hires were male and 30% female. Last year, the proportion of women fell to 26.5%. It’s a marked difference from financial sectors such as banking and investment management, where women have been stable at about 43% of net new hires over the same period, according to LinkedIn.

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Diana Chaplin, Director of Marketing at solemnly promise tosaid these stats are likely to shift “as crypto adoption expands for the same reasons women have developed a successful presence in another industry — including finance and technology — at leadership levels: innovation, competence, and stock-based perspective.”

“Through collectives like BFF targeting women in Web3 to PledgeCrypto, which aims to democratize crypto fundraising for nonprofits, incorporating diversity only helps raise awareness and engagement with new technology,” Chapin told me. GOBankingRates.

Zarzour has a less rosy view of the gender gap, saying that while there are many women who are currently active and rich contributors to the crypto space, the hiring trends are disappointing, but not surprising. “Should we really expect a change?” he thought. “We’re seeing a lot of the audience capture spending and marketing being directed to other spaces where women are minority participants; Matt Damon speaks during a commercial at the biggest game in men’s soccer, esports competitions featuring mostly male athletes signing multimillion-dollar deals, such as TSM-FTX or Coinbase x Team Liquid.

He added that recruiters tasked with attracting “crypto-literate” candidates often draw from audiences generated by this type of targeted marketing spend, and so the gap is naturally widening. “Of course, this has nothing to do with the skills needed to be a successful professional in the space – watching football doesn’t help you understand how proof-of-stake works. Until we see the desire to use blockchain-based tools. to build and market for everyone, we will continue to get what we pay for in terms of diversity.

He concluded that the lack of diversity in candidate pools and hires hurts the industry’s ability to scale.

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“Essentially, any job with a young, fast-moving crypto startup requires wearing multiple hats and performing in different fields. In my work I constantly combine legal experience with my background in government policy and communication. Furthermore, crypto requires the ability to interact with an audience in different cultural contexts – Koii’s community includes users from all over the world – for example America, Russia and China. So we need more diversity in our talent pool,” he said.

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About the author

Yael Bizouati-Kennedy is a full-time financial journalist and has written for several publications, including: Dow Jones, The Financial Times Group, Bloomberg and Business Insider. She also worked as a vice president/senior content writer for major New York City financial firms, including New York Life and MSCI. Yael is now a freelancer and most recently co-authored the book “Blockchain for Medical Research: Accelerating Trust in Healthcare”, with Dr. Sean Manion. (CRC Press, April 2020) She holds two master’s degrees, including one in journalism from New York University and one in Russian studies from Université Toulouse-Jean Jaurès, France.

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