Cointelegraph spoke to employees and freelancers about getting paid in Bitcoin and learnt the pros and cons of this payment method.
Having a salary paid in cryptocurrency offers a lot of opportunities for an employee - from sweet bonuses to long-term investments and more. However, before considering it as a method of receiving your wage, it won’t hurt to ask for some advice. For example, do you know how to arrange conversion of cryptocurrency to fiat currency? What are the advantages, disadvantages and pitfalls of being paid in cryptocurrency? And finally, what kinds of jobs are paid this way?
Niel De La Rouviere, one of the first people to be paid in Bitcoin, said to Fast Company:
“I discovered bitcoin in early 2011. At first it was something that felt like play money and almost surreal. I didn’t fully understand all the details back then, but a decentralized, peer-to-peer digital currency was just too crazy and I became intrigued.”
High wages, nice bonuses and no paperwork
First of all, you can benefit from the exchange rate: If you do not immediately convert your Bitcoin to fiat currency and instead wait for a more beneficial exchange rate, you may get a nice bonus to your wage (in fiat money) depending on your trading abilities and your patience.
Secondly, you don’t need to do any paperwork - this is especially important for freelancers, moonlighters and those who strongly hate bureaucracy. Nobody will ask you about the source of sum equivalent to $10,000 credited to your Bitcoin wallet, and the wallet itself will not show you a message saying that limits were exceeded and now you have to go through verification/authorization procedure, send a pack of notarized documents or visit your bank. However, this is true only until you decide to convert your “coins” to cash.
Thirdly, the wages are higher than average on the market. If an employer can only offer this exotic payment method, feel free to ask for more money due to the inconvenience of this payment method. Besides, payment in Bitcoin is often related to jobs which require specific knowledge of cryptocurrencies (Bitcoin startups, exchanges, etc.) Such knowledge is sought after, and if you have it, you can be paid more than the average market wage for your profession.
In addition to this, if you save some bitcoins, it can turn into a long-term investment. Some experts predict that the Bitcoin exchange rate can be as high as $10,000, and so, if you save up a part of your earned Bitcoins, you will substantially increase your capital.
Last but not least - it is exciting and interesting. If you find a job in a crypto-startup, you can learn a lot and develop your skills in a new field that you have never experienced before.
Jeremy Allaire, Circle CEO, explains to CNN Money:
"When people start experiencing personal payments the same manner they do with email and text, consumers are going to start saying, 'Why can't my company pay me this way?' It's going to be a consumer led phenomenon."
Possible losses and limitations
However, getting paid in cryptocurrency might not be for everyone. One should be prepared for certain risks and limitations.
The BTC exchange rate is notoriously unpredictable, it can either rise or fall substantially, decreasing your profit, or potentially even turning it into a loss. The prediction that the exchange rate of 1 BTC will be as high as $10,000 has no validation. Just as well, within a few years, 1 BTC could cost $10 on the market. If you prefer Litecoins or Dogecoins, we have bad news for you, employers mainly offer Bitcoin.
Lastly, do you have a good command of the English language? If you don’t, it will be very difficult for you to find a good job paid in cryptocurrency - the vast majority of job offers come from foreign companies, the main working language of which is English.
Besides, work for cryptocurrencies is usually related to IT projects. There are much less offers for experts in other fields. So, if you are a programmer, designer, marketer, arbiter, tester, engineer, copywriter/journalist, content manager, or financial analyst, then you have a better chance of getting employed and paid in crypto.
[This article was written in cooperation with Hashflare.]