Do you want to become a smart contract engineer? Think again.
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May 31st, 2022

Our mission at DappCamp is to train the next generation of Web 3 developers. The Web 3 frontier is vast and many parts of it remain unexplored. At DappCamp, we believe there is a dire need for more builders who are eager to go out and build the frontier. Hence, why we started this online bootcamp.

Our online bootcamp is entirely online and available to developers all around the world. We take experienced and driven Web 2 developers and put them through an intense 3-week program to train them on Ethereum smart contract development.

Many of our grads pursue full-time smart contract engineering roles after graduating. To help them facilitate the transition, we wanted to better understand the current state of the Web 3 job market and where the biggest needs lie.

In our research, we discovered a couple of surprising insights that we will share below.

Methodology

Data sources

To collect the list of all open Web 3 roles, we used:

Note: We initially tried using popular cryptocurrency job boards such as Cryptocurrencyjobs.co and Cryptojoblist. However, when we cross-checked the data with individual company job boards, we found the data to be unreliable because many of the job postings on these aggregated job boards were outdated.

To collect company related information, such as total funding and # of employees, we used: Crunchbase

Data engineering

After scraping the data sources listed above, we did some data clean up. This included:

  • Deduplication of job posts: Given that a Web 3 company can be funded by multiple VCs, there were cases where we had the same job post from a company across multiple job boards. In such cases, we deduplicated the data.
  • Normalization of data and tags: [TODO]
  • Classification of job posts: Once the data and tags across jobs were normalized, the next step was to classify the job posts into relevant buckets for our analysis. For example, not all job posts identified whether the job was for a senior or junior engineer. We used a bunch of heuristics based on keywords to classify the jobs into the buckets.

Key insights

There are far less open smart contract engineering roles than we originally assumed.

The total number of open smart contract roles across all Web 3 companies is 985. This represents ~11% of all open engineering roles at these companies.

While smart contract engineering is a very important function within Web 3 companies, most companies only have a few open roles. This is likely because smart contracts only need to be built once and deployed. While this is a mission-critical task that takes months or sometimes years, once written and deployed, there is not much work left to do. Smart contracts are permanent and no changes are made to them once they are deployed.

On the other hand, every Web 3 company still needs other engineering functions to build and maintain the rest of the stack, such as front-end, back-end, dev-ops, node infrastructure, etc. Unlike smart contract engineering, these functions are not “one time” and done—instead, there is a constant demand for them for the life of the company.

It takes companies 3 to 6 months to hire a Smart Contract engineer.

Given the nature of crypto and how fast it moves, 3 to 6 months is a VERY long time to spend making a hire. This tells us that even though there are not that many open smart contract engineering roles on the market, there is still far more demand for smart contract engineering roles than there is a supply of talent.

With that said, the Web 3 companies we spoke to have a VERY high bar when it comes to smart contract engineers, especially when compared to other engineering roles. We’ve also anecdotally heard from many aspiring smart contract engineers that it is difficult to land a smart contract engineering role. Therefore, it isn’t just a supply issue. It is also that companies have a very high bar for smart contract engineering hires so they spend a lot more time looking for the right person.

97% of open smart contract engineering roles are for mid-level or senior engineers.

Almost all of the open smart contract engineering roles are for mid-level or senior engineers. Only 3% of open roles are for junior and/or intern roles. As noted above, most companies have a high-bar for smart contract engineering and are not willing to hire junior or entry-level smart contract engineers.

Our message to you

Smart contract engineering is a prestigious role. Developers who build smart contracts for any Web 3 protocol are playing a critical role in building the underbelly of Web 3.

However, it is important to acknowledge that the role is not for anyone. It is most suitable for experienced engineers who have the capability to build mission critical software.

To that end, if you want to become a smart contract engineer, then start sharpening your skills and don’t assume it will be easy. If you want a guided path to get there, you can consider applying for the next cohort of DappCamp.

Full report

Total number of companies: 2,107

Total Web 3 jobs: 20,862

Total smart contract engineering jobs: 985

Total smart contract engineering jobs as % of all jobs: 4.8%

Total smart contract engineering jobs as % of engineering jobs: 11.3%

Which companies have the most number of open smart contract engineering jobs?

What % of open jobs are smart contract jobs vs. other engineering jobs?

What is the age of open smart contract jobs listed in the past year?

What is the average age of open smart contract job on a per company basis?

What is the distribution of smart contract jobs over different geographical regions?

Note: “Remote” includes remote jobs that can be done from anywhere in the world. “Remote-Germany” and “Remote-USA” represent remote jobs that can only be done remotely from that country.

What % of open smart contract jobs are senior vs. mid-level vs. junior?

We hope you found the above insights useful. To see the link to the full dataset and analysis, click here.

We would love to hear from you!

Web 3 companies

If you are building a Web3 Company and are hiring smart contract developers (or have hired them in the past), we would love to hear about your experience in the form below. All respondents will get access to the final aggregated data.

Web 3 developers

If you are a developer at a Web 3 company (in any engineering function), we would love to hear about your experience during the job search process. All respondents will get access to the final aggregated data.

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