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The programming language that will get you a $500k job in crypto

Should you learn Solidity, the object-oriented programming language used to code smart contracts on the Ethereum blockchain? If you're a developer in an investment bank, hedge fund or trading firm and you want to switch up your career, the answer appears to be yes. 

"People who combine Solidity coding with market making experience are getting multiple job offers," says Matthew Healy, a recruiter at Selby Jennings in New York City. "Multiple job offers" means five to seven per person, he clarifies. They're also being bid-up on pay: "These guys get $300k-$500k per head."

Healy places Solidity developers at crypto market makers, decentralized exchanges, and hedge funds. He says demand for Solidity coders has gone through the roof, but the supply of Solidity coders has not. "There are very few people out there with Solidity knowledge and a lot of people asking for it," he says. The hottest candidates are either Solidity developers with Silicon Valley experience, or developers who can code in Solidity and who have experience in an electronic trading environment. "Having a quant finance pedigree helps," says Healy (you probably won't be earning $500k if you've never worked in finance or technology and have learned Solidity in your bedroom, although you might still get hired).

As we reported last month, it's not just crypto native firms and crypto-curious hedge funds that are hiring Solidity developers: banks are also busy recruiting in the area. Goldman Sachs, for example, has been looking for Solidity coders to work on a digital assets team within Marquee, the UI for its institutional clients.

Solidity is an object-oriented language based on C++ , Python and JavaScript that uses curly braces to create statement blocks. It's allegedly possible to learn it within 30 days (presuming you don't have a job at the same time), but Healy says it's more common for his candidates to invest their weekends and paid leave into their Solidity skills: "I'm seeing a lot of candidates learning Solidity in their own time or attending boot camps," he says. Computer science students are also learning Solidity on the side; Healy says colleges like Georgia Tech are a known place to hunt for crypto talent, alongside big names like MIT. 

FAANG firms have a reputation for paying well, but Healy says crypto market making firms will often pay even better. "We're placing people who are up 50% to 100%," he claims.

Many are also working remotely: "I've placed some people who are travelling in Spain."

Photo by Nenad Novaković on Unsplash

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AUTHORSarah Butcher Global Editor
  • Ch
    29 March 2022

    The actual website for Blockchain @ GT is now I am one of the co-founders!

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