Blockchain was the fastest-growing skill in 2018. Its growth exceeded 2,000% for three quarters in a row and 6,000% for year-over-year growth. No wonder – blockchain has the power to transform the way money is transferred, how people vote online, how they verify their identities, invest, prove ownership of digital assets, and much more. In this article, we’ll take a close look at the much-debated topic of blockchain developer salary. We’ll discuss:
- What is blockchain?
- Blockchain developer salary
- Skills that affect blockchain developer salary
- Ethereum developer salary
What is blockchain?
One of the biggest advantages of blockchain is that it’s a distributed network. Instead of relying on a single registry, blockchain relies on a network of computers forming a secure chain or ledger. That makes it resistant to manipulations or hacking as an attacker would need to hack more than 50% of the computers in the network at the same time.
Another reason for the popularity of blockchain in the tech world is that major companies such as IBM, Samsung, and SAP have taken blockchain seriously, implementing more blockchain-based features and regularly hiring engineers and computer scientists specialized in the blockchain. What is more, blockchain is now being used in the fields of business and finance, even by traditional companies like Visa or Bank of America. All of that affects the job market and average blockchain developer salary.
Source: Burning Glass
Blockchain technologies are often considered to be cutting-edge and complex, which together with the growing usage and interest has created increasing demand for software developers with blockchain skills. It’s important to stress that blockchain developer or engineer has not become a job title itself, at least not yet. Therefore, companies that need people with these skills should instead look for back-end developers, machine learning engineers, and solutions architects with blockchain skills. It’s a relatively new and growing field which means the job market for blockchain professionals will likely still undergo some changes and an average blockchain developer salary may change in the future. Another interesting trend in the blockchain job market is the rising demand for remote work. According to Mehul Patel, the CEO of Hired, over half of tech professionals want to work 100% remotely, not to mention those demanding home-office from time to time.
Blockchain developer salary
The growing demand for blockchain talent and the rare skill set it has contributes to relatively high salaries, higher than average in tech. According to Hired, an average blockchain developer salary stands at between $150,000 and $175,000 per year. To compare, an average software engineer salary stands at $137,000 per year. The highest blockchain developer salary can be found in the San Francisco Bay Area – $162,288.
According to another recruitment source, Janco, a median blockchain developer salary stands at $127,000 and $172,000 for more experienced developers. Top blockchain engineers can earn even more than $200,000 per year.
Source: Janco Associates
Similar numbers are provided by CryptoCurrencyJobs.co, which states that blockchain developer salary in the United States stands at $136,000 per year.
Source: Crypto Currency Jobs
According to PayScale, the average blockchain developer salary is significantly lower ($109,000 per year) but it’s calculated based on other positions that only mention blockchain as a related skill. Therefore, it may not be the most reliable source in this case.Source: PayScale
Skills that affect blockchain developer salary
The high salaries of professionals with blockchain-related skills also result from the desired skill set that is relatively rare and specialized. Although blockchain developers are supposed to know popular programming languages while being flexible and curious about new technologies, there are also some specific skills they should possess and they significantly affect a blockchain developers’ salary. To give you an example, here is a common skillset of a blockchain developer:
- GitHub and experience with open source projects,
- basic knowledge of mathematics and algorithms,
- understanding of Bitcoin and blockchain.
Ethereum developer salary
Blockchain developers are often supposed to have a working knowledge of Ethereum, which is “an open-source, public, blockchain-based distributed computing platform and operating system featuring smart contract functionality.” Thanks to Ethereum, developers don’t need to have advanced skills related to cryptography or algorithms to build blockchain-based applications. This open software platform facilitates and automates much of their work.
Similarly to Bitcoin, Ethereum is a distributed public blockchain network. However, instead of tracking ownership of digital currency, it runs the code behind decentralized applications. No wonder that engineers with Ethereum skills are in demand. However, similarly to the blockchain developer, Ethereum developer/engineer is not commonly considered as a separate job, but more as a skill. That’s why popular salary and recruitment serviced don’t provide information on its average salaries.
Cryptocurrency Jobs only shares an average Solidity developer salary in the United States, which is related to Ethereum and stands at $127,500 per year.
Source: Cryptocurrency Jobs
In fact, the best way to get a reliable idea about how much Ethereum developers earn is to check freelancing marketplaces. As we’ve already mentioned, many blockchain engineers work or would like to work remotely, often as freelancers and consultants. That’s why it’s easy to find them and their rates. Upwork, shows that the majority of Ethereum developers expect between $50 and $100 per hour.
Before you go
We also have other great resources devoted to a software developer salary, such as: