Spoiler Alert: If your company’s success hinges on the accuracy and credibility of the data you collect, blockchain is in your future. But we’ll come back to that.
At its simplest, blockchain represents an append-only ledger. But what does that mean? Let’s use an analogy: pencils versus pens.
- Information is recorded, same as with pens.
- Pencil marks can be erased, leaving room for fraud or unsolicited edits.
- Mistakes can be resolved with a simple erasure, but no record of the adjustment is kept.
- Information is recorded, same as with pencils.
- Pen marks cannot be erased, leaving no room for fraud or unsolicited edits.
- Mistakes must be resolved by appending additional data to the erroneous mark. The original mark is maintained, keep a record of the mistake.
In the analogy above, blockchain is the pen. Traditional database methods are the pencil. You wouldn’t complete a form with a pencil, would you?
Blockchain renders your data immutable through the clever use of hashing algorithms. Every data entry in the “chain” is compared against the previous entries, ensuring at every step that the data still “adds up”. If any manipulation to previous data is detected, the chain is compromised and the administrator is notified. That data is no longer credible.
With blockchain all edits are transparent (to those with privileged access to the data), allowing you to report on your data with 100% accuracy.
Use Cases For Blockchain
There is a misconception that blockchain is just for cryptocurrencies or other monetary transactions. That’s simply not true. Blockchain has a place in any industry where performance and income is judged on the credibility of the data coming into and out of a business.
Blockchain is exciting because it offers both transparency and agility in any contractual or reporting relationship an organization has.
Some great use cases include:
- Healthcare — As consumer demand for an increase healthcare transparency and accountability increases, healthcare is ripe for a blockchain revolution. From patient records to prescription changes, to in-home visitation; any data collected on a patient or client should be recorded in a permanent, immutable fashion.
- Agriculture — Sustainable and fair sourcing of food products is a hot topic for today’s consumer. Blockchain allows food providers to track a product from source to shelf. Fairtrade is getting re-imagined!
- Service-based Anything — You only get paid when your technician shows up to the customers’ house or business. What if they’re not home? What if they claim your tech never came? A blockchain-secured timeclock system provides your billing and legal team a verifiable activity record. Your clients can’t dodge the invoice, and your techs can’t game the system.
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
So What Now?
Blockchain adoption can be a tricky bit of development, but Stickboy Creative specializes in developing exactly these sorts of solutions. Contact us today. Chances are you’ll get to talk to me!