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Opinion: Demystifying Blockchain

Opinion: Demystifying Blockchain

Blockchain is one of the hottest topics in business right now but a lot of conversation around the technology is led by a lack of understanding.

In today’s fast-paced technological landscape there is always one or two advances on the horizon that businesses are told to keep track of, learn inside out and start to consider for use in their day to day operation.

However, Blockchain has the potential to be so transformative over the coming years that I believe it is absolutely crucial that businesses get on board now.

Blockchain, AI and the Internet of Things, all of which come under the Frontier Technologies banner, will be implemented in companies across the world over the next few years whether voluntarily or under duress.

Simply put, the Blockchain is an immutable, distributed, digital ledger that involves ‘blocks’ of digital information stored in a decentralised database either public or private.

Transactions are monitored, accounted for and stored in a way that makes them available easier and more precisely than ever before.

One area which I believe may well see the biggest transformation is the supply chain and logistics industry.

Mainly, this will be done by decentralising the data making it transparent and transacting through smart contracts, completely revolutionising the supply chain ecosystem.

Every step from raw material to point of sale and beyond the asset movement can be linked nto the Blockchain, creating a permanent historical record. This would reduce time delays, added costs, and human error. Additionally, transforming aftercare management of products and services.

The technology used to cover transparency in the supply chain today is so open to error that the advent of Blockchain feels as though it could have been built solely for this purpose.

Companies can build trust with the public by clearly showing the journey of their products and its environmental impact, something which is growing in importance by the day.

Most importantly, there can be no dispute regarding transactions because everyone involved will have the same live record of events.

The public sector is another example of an industry which Blockchain could have a huge impact on.

In terms of voting systems, citizenship records and more, individuals would no longer need access to paper documents, with all information stored in a Blockchain and users given an access code to see their records.

For the healthcare industry, full patient records could be stored with greater clarity and ease of access than before, which will inevitably lead to a better system and care for people.

The technology will create new forms of economics and business models and education has a key role to play in allowing businesses to utilise it to its full strength.

At the Institute of Coding, we are striving to create courses that see the demand and type of opportunities this technology is going to create, so a readymade workforce can bring a deep understanding of how to use Blockchain to improve processes and solve real businesses problems, taking companies to the next level.

By Deepak Farmah, Institute of Coding Coventry University.

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