Fifteen years ago, author Daniel Pink, predicted the global transition from W-2 centric employment to a new world of freelancers, temps, and independent contractors. He coined the term “Free Agent Nation” which became the title of his bestselling book and reflects a virtual community of workers no longer tethered to a single geographic location or corporate identity.
Now, the next iteration of this shift is taking shape. It involves the compensation of workers through the use of blockchain technology and digital tokens. Know as “time-based currencies,” this concept has been in existence for nearly 200 years, having had success in a limited number of settings involving time-based economies. The Ithaca Hours Community Currency (New York) represents one example. Yet, for various reasons, it has not been broadly applied to global workforce economies.
Now the Australian-based business known as ChronoBank is championing the concept as a means of changing the way professionals identify work opportunities and are compensated. This blockchain project seeks to disrupt the prevailing HR talent acquisition space in a manner similar to how Uber and Lyft upended the taxi business. It operates via a simple framework involving the development of a decentralized, intermediary- free ecosystem where talented people can sell their time and specialized value in a given field.
As a private, time-based money system, transactions happen directly between people and businesses without third-party interference. It reflects a different form of money, a complementary currency bolstered by “time or service” credits. These monetary credits can be exchanged for goods and services, or sold for other currencies.
ChronoBank.io, the project brainchild, is a community of professionals with over 100 years of combined recruitment experience working in collaboration with experts who are leveraging blockchain applications for real-world business solutions. The project is comprised of two elements:
Multi-Blockchain Labor Hours: Known as National Labour-Hour (LH) tokens, these are the tradable resource in ChronoBank’s “time-based” economy. They serve as fiat currency payment substitutes, enabling people to be rewarded for their work . The premise of this financial backbone centers around the notion that labor is abundant enough for everyone to have access to it, yet scarce enough to be valuable.
LH tokens and ChronoBank.io dapps (decentralized applications) listed on Ethereum, Waves and Lisk blockchains, will be tied to the average hourly wage in a host country and will be supported by a collective labor force comprised of big recruitment and talent management companies around the world. They are fiat and cryptocurrency liquid with 24/7 accessibility via an LH debit card.
LaborX: The second element of the ChronoBank platform, known as LaborX, is a decentralized marketplace where people will be able to market their labor hours to anyone. This platform will also allow talent professionals to view their labor hours on a dashboard in a similar manner as Upwork and Uber.
Actual labor time with a standard exchange rate can be traded for the LH token, and vice versa. Each ChronoBank.io member will be assigned a reputation score that enables them to get paid appropriately relative to their skill level and value delivered. The higher the individual’s reputation score from previous work, the higher they can command for an hour’s work. Initial reputation scores are predicated on the individual’s experience within the partner company to which they’re linked. There will be incentives for the user to boost their reputation and sustain it at a high level.
Fueling this ambitious quest is ChronoBank’s crowdfunding campaign, scheduled to commence this December. Interested investors can register for the ICO and acquire further information about the concept and ICO features via the ChronoBank website.
Says CEO Sergei Sergienko: “By doing an ICO we are trying to raise funds to develop the system. Chronobank will be an open source project as we believe that the best products are always created in collaboration. We are hoping to get people excited enough about the project so that they start thinking about this new economy in their own locations and industries.”
He says the long-term mission is to make short-term employment more attractive to everyone, providing an environment where people can pick and choose when and where they work. “We are revolutionizing both the finance and recruitment industry. It’s about our time on this planet, a resource that is scarce enough to be valuable, yet abundant enough to be accessible to anyone, especially in the countries and places where nothing else of value exists.”