In the face of volatile fiat currencies, an increasing number of individuals are opting for cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC) as their preferred method of receiving salaries, according to human resources executives.
The utilization of cryptocurrencies and stablecoins for salary payments has witnessed a steady rise in recent years. This shift is not only driven by high-profile athletes and politicians choosing crypto paychecks but also by everyday individuals seeking to hedge against various forms of instability, as highlighted by Michael Brooks, the co-founder and CEO of goLance.
Multiple factors have contributed to the surge in crypto salaries, including the growing acceptance of digital currencies as legitimate payment options, increased education and awareness, and technological advancements, according to Brooks in an interview with Cointelegraph.
Brooks further stated that economic conditions in different parts of the world have also played a role in the increased adoption of crypto payments. He noted, “Some regions experiencing political instability, hyperinflation, or restrictive financial systems have seen an uptick in cryptocurrency usage as an alternative means of conducting transactions.”
At goLance, the percentage of payouts made in cryptocurrencies was less than 5% in 2021, which grew to nearly 10% in 2022, and is projected to reach 17% in 2023, according to Brooks. Among freelancers at goLance who choose crypto payments, an average of 17.5% of their earnings are in crypto, with the remaining 82.5% in fiat currencies.
Dan Westgarth, the Chief Operating Officer at human resources and payroll platform Deel, pointed out that the global workforce has increasingly embraced receiving wages in crypto, driven by the political and economic instability that has led to significant fluctuations in local fiat currencies. In particular, stablecoins like USD Coin (USDC) have become more appealing, offering a solution to the volatility:
“We see that countries facing more political and currency turbulence continue to use crypto, particularly withdrawals in USDC to combat volatility.”
Westgarth highlighted the Caribbean as a region where crypto salaries have gained traction due to outdated banking systems, enabling individuals to avoid extended waiting periods, payment delays, and high banking withdrawal fees associated with traditional methods.
Latin America accounts for the largest share of crypto withdrawals on the Deel platform, representing 54% of all crypto withdrawals between January and May 2023. Crypto salaries in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa make up 38% during the same period. The Asia-Pacific region and non-aligned movement countries collectively contribute less than 10% of all crypto withdrawals, according to Westgarth.