When it comes to blockchain technology, people will generally think about the digital currency Bitcoin. It doesn’t come as a surprise though as the technology was first introduced to the public in 2008 when Satoshi Nakamoto, a pseudonym, released a whitepaper about Bitcoin, which was described as “A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System.” The next year, Bitcoin was made available in the open-source community.
Bitcoin is just one of the many applications of blockchain. After several decades, blockchain has become one of the biggest innovative technologies with the potential to greatly influence not just the finance sector but every industry including healthcare, energy supply, manufacturing and education.
By 2014, some people realised that the technology behind Bitcoin could be applied to more than just cryptocurrency, which triggered them to explore its potential applications in various types of transactions.
Entrepreneurs were investing in the study of how blockchain can be applied in various businesses and industry procedures such as voting, transportation, contract management and supply chains, among others.
In 2015, another blockchain called Ethereum was launched. This was built by Vitalik Buterin, who was initially a Bitcoin programming contributor but got frustrated by the coding limitations. Unlike Bitcoin, Ethereum can handle not only currency but also contracts, loans and other assets. Moreover, Ethereum can also automatically process contracts based on a set of criteria established in the blockchain. This “smart contract” functionality has attracted multinational corporations such as Microsoft, UBS and BBVA since it saves money and time.
What benefits can blockchain bring to different industries?
In essence, the blockchain technology allows recording of important data in a public setting but does not enable anyone to remove it. Such technology offers a great solution when it comes to digital trust because the information or data is decentralised, transparent and time-stamped.
- Healthcare – Hospitals and other medical establishments each have their own standard procedures of keeping patient records. This can be cumbersome when relaying information from one hospital to another or when health insurance companies and related entities try to access a patient’s information. With blockchain, information blocks are kept in a standard manner while ensuring no one can tamper with the data. Furthermore, the consistent presentation and accuracy of the blockchain data can lead to more accurate diagnoses, improved treatment, and lower clerical and administration costs regardless of which medical establishment is accessing the data. Also, because of the decentralized nature of blockchain, the data will still be safe and available when fire, natural calamities and other disasters strike.
- Accounting. Among other reasons, blockchain can dramatically improve accounting efficiency because it provides clarity and accuracy regarding asset ownership and history as well as the existence of obligations. It also reduces or greatly eliminates recordkeeping costs, enabling accountants and auditors to focus on planning, assessment and valuation.
- Supply chain management. In essence, blockchain can help businesses track transactions, monitor and assess costs, detect evidence of tampering easily, and ultimately, reduce corruption within the supply chain.
- Energy supply. The energy sector can benefit from the transparent feature of blockchain transactions in the supply chain. In addition, the technology supports sustainability by managing resources through the decentralized decision making and automated demand-supply balancing. (source1, source2)
- Quality Assurance. Blockchain helps ensure that products are safe, services are up to standards, recordkeeping is more thorough and transparency protocols are stronger. However, companies planning to integrate blockchain in their Quality Assurance (QA) process should assess the efficiency of their current QA protocols to make the most of the technology. (source)
- Financial. The financial sector can definitely benefit from blockchain technology. In fact, a 2016 report from BM Institute for Business Value revealed that from among the 200 banks in 16 countries, around 66% are expected to utilise blockchain in their commercial applications by the year 2020. Blockchain also has potential in the stock market trading because it makes transferring of financial assets easier while reducing transaction costs and strengthening investor trust.
Why does your business need blockchain?
The application of blockchain will depend on the industry you are in and the nature of your business. Below are some reasons to incorporate this technology into your business.
- In terms of currency, blockchain technology allows for instant payments since the financial asset is transferred directly from person and person without passing through a financial institution. This is also beneficial for businesses encompassing a global market whether catering to clients, handling suppliers or hiring staff from around the world.
- Blockchain can also prevent payment scams, thanks to the technology’s tamper-proof, decentralisation and transparent nature.
- Business transactions are accelerated as a result of the “smart contract” feature and Internet of Things (IoT) nature of blockchain. For example, blockchain data can help to speed up shipping and delivery services through elimination of human errors, inconsistent paperwork and missing documents.
- Business transactions can also be automated and processed in real-time since the smart contract programming can run without any downtime. For example, if you are running a bicycle rental business, you can implement a smart lock which your customers can unlock through an app after both parties have agreed to the terms.
- Personal data record security is enhanced because blockchain data will be hard for a cybercriminal to hack since each information record is individually encrypted with a key.
What are the advantages of a blockchain certification?
Blockchain is currently one of the most disruptive technologies that have the potential to impact current procedures in various industries. As mentioned earlier, many banks worldwide are expected to incorporate blockchain technology into their standard commercial procedures. With the rise of Ethereum platforms, more businesses will be integrating the blockchain technology into their operations. Therefore, now is the best time to learn about blockchain and enrol in courses with blockchain certification.
As an individual with blockchain certification, you will be highly sought after by large corporations which are seeking consultants to provide assessment, advice and services related to blockchain implementation.
For a business, having a blockchain certification such as Aventis’ Blockchain for Business Application & Strategy course as soon as possible enables your company to be a trailblazer or an early mass adopter of the technology. In the next few years, your company will be ahead of your competitors while they are still learning about the technology.
Here are more advantages of blockchain certification.
- Obtain a fundamental knowledge on blockchain’s functionalities and their implications on financial structures, business and economies;
- Understand blockchain’s effects on business procedures and their implication on consumers as well as the industries and society as a whole;
- Gain the ability to assess and analyse blockchain trends and the market disruptions;
- Gain a concrete understanding of blockchain technology and business drivers, and explore their application for transformative business models
- Obtain the capability to create better strategic decisions for the business in teams utilising an open framework
In addition, the more technical courses for blockchain can provide you with the knowledge and skills to create a blockchain system including the mining, buying and selling processes, which you can apply according to the specific needs of your business.
How can you leverage blockchain into your business?
Blockchain can radically change the way we do things. Here are some tips on incorporating blockchain into your business:
- Learn about blockchain beyond its cryptocurrency capabilities
A good way to do this is to enrol in blockchain application courses. There are non-technical blockchain courses that entrepreneurs and business executives can join to gain an understanding of how the technology works and its impact on business operations.
- Work with a Blockchain Specialist
As the process of creating the “Proof of Concept” for a blockchain system can be too technical for most people, it is best to set a budget to either hire an in-house blockchain technical expert or partner up with a trusted blockchain service provider.
- Focus on real-life business scenarios
When starting a blockchain project, make sure to focus on specific real-life business problems that can be solved with the help of blockchain. This will prevent your technical team from building a system that utilizes innovative blockchain features but lacks the capability to solve real business scenarios.
With the increasing demand for blockchain technology, now is the best time for you to enrol in Aventis’ Blockchain for Business Application & Strategy course and be a trailblazer in the industry!