Chrono.tech sits at the intersection of two big and bold ideas. Blockchain has been one of the most compelling narratives to emerge recently from the technology industry, promising a new kind of internet and open, accessible decentralised services of all kinds. Meanwhile, remote freelance work has become the new norm for millions of people, as the gig economy eats into existing employment patterns.
These two fast-growing markets are natural allies, for both practical and ideological reasons. Over the next five years, both will come of age, moving from nascent trends to realities embedded across every area of life. As a blockchain company founded to revolutionise recruitment and HR processes, Chrono.tech is set both to help drive the adoption of decentralised technologies and freelancing, and benefit from their rapid expansion.
Blockchain: The Foundation Of Web3
Blockchain has had its fair share of ups and downs. Cryptocurrency, blockchain’s first use case, has stolen the limelight to date. Bitcoin and other digital assets have soared in value over the past few years, as well as suffering brutal crashes, which took down a number of high-profile companies in the space and attracted both criticism and regulatory scrutiny. Bitcoin currently trades at less than half its all-time high, and remains a polarising issue for investors and politicians.
For all that, blockchain is unquestionably here to stay. There is too much interest in decentralised ledger technology, including cryptocurrencies but by no means confined to that use case, to seriously doubt it will still be around a decade from now. ‘Web3’ is the term given to the next generation of the internet, which will be built on decentralised technologies and which offers users the services that are currently provided by huge, centralised tech corporations. From a $6 billion market in 2021, blockchain is forecast to grow at an incredible 80% CAGR over the coming years, to top $1.2 trillion by 2030, driven by key use cases in the finance, healthcare, logistics and entertainment sectors.
In the future, ‘blockchain’ will probably not be viewed as a distinct technology that is considered on its own terms, any more than AI will be. They will be built into almost every application, behind the scenes, as part of the infrastructure of the internet and online services. Instead of thinking of blockchain as a sector, it will simply be a tool that developers and companies across the whole economy use to create more efficient, transparent, and accessible services.
‘Where we see blockchain driving the greatest innovation is in those areas that have not historically enjoyed openness or fairness,’ says Sergei Sergienko, founder of Chrono.tech. ‘That’s where the greatest opportunities lie. For example in finance, gaming and – our own focus – employment.’
Freelancing And Remote Work
While the coronavirus pandemic has largely dropped out of the news, its legacy is clear across many areas of life. Aside from the lingering health impacts, COVID has seen the rise of new technologies and the reordering of life and society on different priorities.
Remote work became the norm, and the gig economy exploded as more and more people sought freelance employment online. It’s worth noting that remote/freelance work – like blockchain – was already in a growth trend before COVID struck and accelerated adoption.
There are an estimated 58 million freelancers in the US alone, and by 2027, freelancers will become the country’s majority workforce. Businesses have also benefited from the flexibility and convenience of the gig economy, with almost half now employing freelancers. Overall, the global market for remote services is on track to grow 200% over just five years, from $20 billion in 2022 to almost $60 billion in 2027.
Although the pandemic is now in the rear-view mirror, these trends are not about to go into reverse. The last three years have demonstrated that – against the conventional wisdom of earlier times – it is possible, and often even desirable, to operate a business remotely, and to rely on freelance staff. Additionally, more and more people have opted out of the traditional workforce, wanting to reorganise their lives away from the office to enjoy time with family, travel, and other priorities.
All of this, in turn, creates a niche in the market for companies that can see which way the wind is blowing.
New Economy, New Software
Blockchain was one of the big beneficiaries of the pandemic, as new technologies of all kinds were explored and leveraged to keep society running as best we could.
As we emerge from those world-defining times, the economy faces new challenges and new needs: another banking crisis, combined with an inflation crisis, alongside the continuing trend towards remote and freelance work, plus new opportunities and risks from fast-moving AI applications, and a collapse in trust for central banks, governments and technology corporations.
The result of all of this is that more people want to, or are forced to, seek work outside of conventional channels and structures. And blockchain is the perfect technology to help not just one but many of these issues, ensuring greater speed, efficiency, transparency, trust, accessibility and opportunity.
Founded in 2016, Chrono.tech was already an active contributor to the blockchain industry – building solutions that made it easier for businesses to pay their remote workers using cryptocurrencies, organise work between employers and freelancers, remove points of trust, and acquire and handle digital assets.
It should come as no surprise that Chrono.tech’s products have seen a surge in users in recent years, as the landscape for employment evolves. The future is one where national borders and national currencies are less important, where more of life is lived online, and where work is more flexible and fits the needs of the individual rather than the employer.
With the trajectory firmly set for the growth of blockchain services and remote and freelance work patterns, the next five years promise to be a boom time for decentralised platforms that can help organise these new work relationships effectively and securely.