Cloud Architect

Last Updated on November 3, 2022

If you prefer working in the IT field and want to become an expert in cloud computing, cloud architect will be one good occupation for you. This profession can be lucrative, with important factors to consider before making a decision.

We will discuss cloud architects and explore all aspects of this profession. Knowing them can help determine if this position aligns with your career goals.

Job Description

What is Cloud architecture?

What is Cloud Architecture?

It refers to the science of designing buildings or other physical environments and structures. But what makes this field special is applying this task to technology with no physical structures – cloud systems.

What does a Cloud Architect do?

What does their workday look like? In no particular order, it might include:

  • Discuss real business issues and identify opportunities with cloud technologies.
  • Establish the best methods for cloud usage within organizations.
  • Oversee governance, also known as the standards and rules the cloud environment must follow.
  • Responsible for IT security tasks to track privacy and build incident response procedures.
  • Responsible for mitigating risks that governance and security might have helped identify.
  • Estimate meeting budgets and cloud infrastructure costs.
  • Design and implement the organization’s cloud infrastructure.

Where Do These Architects Work?

Consumer transactions, database management processes, or business operations are slowly moving into digital and cloud environments.

It led to the development of the cloud computing industry, offering more job opportunities for cloud architects to pursue.

You can work in many sectors as various companies rely on this position to develop and maintain their cloud environments.

With the high demand for cloud architects, it is easy for these professionals to get job positions and promotions.

While many cloud architects work for an organization or a company, others work for themselves. These architects may begin their businesses and perform freelance work for their customers.

The flexibility of freelance lets these experts explore various types of cloud computing systems, access new clients, and get more autonomy over their wages and schedules.

If cloud architects gain enough expertise, they can also perform consulting work and hire one cloud specialist team to diversify their talent and access a wider audience.

Education Requirements

Cloud architects all have at least a bachelor’s degree.

Degree

Most organizations favor hiring candidates with at least a bachelor’s degree.

Gaining a degree in computer science or related fields is also one of the great ways to develop theoretical and practical knowledge and essential skills.

It may give you a solid background in working with operating systems, networking concepts, excellent practices in cloud security, programming languages, and more.

Certification

Getting certified is optional and does not guarantee you will get a job. However, it will help you compete more in the job market and improve your earning potential. Certifications deliver proof of your expertise and skills in the field.

Here are some popular cloud architecture certifications:

  • Microsoft Azure solutions architect.
  • Associate AWS certified developer.
  • IBM-certified solution architect.
  • Arcitura certified cloud architect.
  • Google Professional Cloud (GPC) architect.
  • Associate AWS certified solutions architect.

Essential Skills

Before starting as a cloud architect, you will need a robust foundation in cloud computing.

It includes understanding various cloud service providers, excellent practices in cloud security, and kinds of cloud service models and deployment architectures.

Developing a solid technical and workplace skills set might help you prepare well for this role. These helpful skills include.

1. Leadership

Cloud architects might often lead teams of other IT professionals.

As a Cloud architect, you might often lead a team of other IT professionals, including engineers and developers.

They will work with you to build efficient, robust cloud environments. Good leadership, communication, and teamwork are the key here.

2. Basic business skills

As one of the cloud architects, you will create business solutions to support your organization’s goals.

It means having a decent foundation in business skills, such as how to read financial statements and calculate return on investment, is beneficial.

3. Cloud-based security concepts

Securing data and access is essential to the role of cloud architects. You must be good at concepts like Identity and Access Management, VPN, firewalls, and IPS (in-plane switching) systems.

4. Networking

Cloud architects should be able to work with some necessary concepts like:

  • DNS (Domain name system).
  • TCP/IP (Transmission control protocol/internet protocol).
  • VPN (Virtual Private Network).
  • HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol)

The lack of a decent understanding of networking will make it more challenging to create effective cloud-based solutions which are secure and scalable.

5. Basic programming languages

Familiarity with essential programming languages, such as C#, Java, and Python, will help you better make solutions and proof of concepts to demonstrate how they will work to your senior executives.

6. Enterprise computing

Cloud architects will have to be able to work with various operating systems, such as Windows, Unix, Ubuntu, and Linux.

7. Communication

Communication skills are essential.

Many professionals in the IT field work individually on projects and their tasks, but sometimes Cloud architects must work with others, including members of an IT team, other employees, and company stakeholders. That’s when fast communication skills come in handy.

You will easily communicate your ideas with others with good communication skills, making everything as smooth as possible.

8. Project Management

Cloud architects work with many projects focusing on cloud computing, so building their project management skills is needed.

Essential Tools

As a cloud architect, you should be knowledgeable with the following tools to accomplish your daily goals.

  • Computers in general
  • Telecommunications systems
  • Programming and coding languages
  • Queuing, network, caching, and security system.
  • Application program interface management systems
  • Knowledge of some tools such as Visual Paradigm, Cloudcraft, Arcentry, Azure, Edraw is an added advantage.

Job Outlook

The job opportunities for cloud architects are faster than other professions.

According to the U.S BLS, the job outlook for computer network experts, including cloud architects, is significantly faster than average compared to all other professions.

As predicted by the BLS, the employment of these architects will increase by 5 percent through 2029. Certified cloud architects with decent skills are in vast demand. Some of the jobs they can get are:

Salary

As a cloud architect, various factors may impact how much you will earn, including location, the industry you work in, and your experience.

As of Sep 18, 2022, the average annual salary for an entry-level cloud architect in the US is $116,279. By a simple division, it is easy to convert this average salary to $55.90 per hour, $2,236 per week, and $9,689 per month.

The annual salary for entry-level cloud architects ranges from $67,500 to $156,000, with earners making approximately $179,000 annually across the US.

Top 10 Highest Paying Cities (In The US) For Entry Level Cloud Architect Jobs

City

Hourly Wage

Weekly Pay

Monthly Pay

Annual Salary

Brooklyn, NY

$62.89

$2,515

$10,901

$130,814

Hebron Estates, KY

$63.11

$2,524

$10,938

$131,267

Bellevue, WA

$63.21

$2,528

$10,955

$131,466

Stamford, CT

$63.60

$2,543

$11,023

$132,285

Roslyn Estates, NY

$63.93

$2,557

$11,080

$132,964

Johnstonville, CA

$65.38

$2,615

$11,332

$135,989

Green River, WY

$65.55

$2,621

$11,361

$136,338

Deer Park, CA

$67.19

$2,687

$11,646

$139,753

Bridgehampton, NY

$70.11

$2,804

$12,152

$145,834

Atkinson, NE

$80.74

$3,229

$13,994

$167,936

10 of the Highest Paying Cloud Architect Jobs

Jobs

Salary Range (Per Year)

Cloud Infrastructure Architect

$145,500-$176,500

Cloud Services Architect

$106,000-$171,500

Cloud Solutions Architect

$130,000-$170,000

Cloud Systems Architect

$113,000-$164,000

Cloud Consultant

$81,000-$159,500

Cloud Software Engineer

$106,000-$157,500

OpenStack Cloud Consulting Architect

$98,000-$151,000

Cloud Engineer

$105,500-$147,000

Cloud Developer

$106,500-$141,000

Cloud Operations Engineer

$94,000-$131,500

Pros and Cons of Being a Cloud Architect

Here are some pros and cons of working as one cloud architect:

Pros

  • Earning potential
  • Continuous learning
  • Collaborative work
  • Diverse work environments
  • Job security
  • Positive job growth
  • Freelance work

Cons

  • Long work hours
  • Learning curve
  • Educational requirements
  • High responsibility
  • Changing industry

FAQs

How to Become a Cloud Architect?

While the path to becoming a cloud architect might vary from person to person, most will include at least five steps:

Step 1: Get a High School Diploma

If you want to become a cloud architect, you will need at least a bachelor’s degree (or even a master’s degree, for some cases). So, it is essential to start with getting your high school diploma.

As you are in school, you should focus on taking subjects related to this career field, such as math, computer programming, and science.

Moreover, taking AP (advanced placement) courses can help you earn college credits before graduation.

If possible, it is okay to explore various opportunities that allow you to work part-time at a company that delivers entry-level positions in the IT field.

Step 2: Get A Bachelor’s Degree

When considering a university or college to attend to earn your bachelor’s degree, you should check out their list of available majors.

That way, you can choose a school that has a more enticing major than others to support your future career objectives.

A degree in computer science or information technology is common among cloud architects, but some schools deliver majors, or specific courses or minor programs, in cloud computing, especially when this field develops continuously.

Moreover, joining classes focusing on virtual storage, data center computing, backup & recovery methods, and network infrastructures are okay.

While you are in school, we recommend considering ways you can support your schooling with training and hands-on experience. For example, you can work at your university or college’s computer lab or tutor others in these subjects.

Step 3. Gain On-The-Job Experience

Having on-the-job experience is essential to all excellent cloud architects.

These experts often start in more entry-level positions and gain promotions to the cloud architect role via building their skills.

The more experience you get, the more likely you will get a job as a cloud architect or a position that leads straight to this role.

Step 4: Receive a Master’s Degree

Receiving a master’s degree is unnecessary to pursue this profession, but some organizations require candidates to own this degree or consider it a preferred educational qualification.

So having a master’s degree allows you to stand out from other candidates who also aim for a Cloud architect position or other roles in the IT field.

Step 5: Get Relevant Certifications

Many certifications are available, which allow you to learn and explore more about this field, improve your confidence in architecture and showcase your education and skills to your hiring manager.

While some programs focus more on specific architect skills, others deliver education on certain cloud platforms. Generally, getting certification is optional but recommended.

Is Cloud Architect A Good Career?

Yes. Cloud architects benefit from the growth and significance of cloud computing. So, the demand for Cloud architects is always high.

Who Can Become a Cloud Architect?

This profession is ideal for those who prefer working in the IT field and want to become an expert in cloud computing.

Career Advice

Cloud architecture is a promising career that will pay well for those willing to invest effort and time. So if you want to pursue this profession, remember that patience is key.

Let’s start with getting a bachelor’s degree in the relevant major. Then consider getting a certificate, which will help you stand out from other candidates in the hiring process.

In addition, strengthen the necessary skills, including hard and soft, to do your job well as a Cloud architect.