How to Become a Cloud Architect in 2024 [Step-By-Step Guide]November 20, 2023 2023-11-20 21:53
How to Become a Cloud Architect in 2024 [Step-By-Step Guide]
How to Become a Cloud Architect in 2024 [Step-By-Step Guide]
There are various steps involved in becoming a successful cloud architect. But first, you need to understand cloud computing basics and its several factors. Any candidate interested in developing and maintaining cloud software can seek the cloud architect profession. This position requires extensive experience and related skills.
Therefore, it becomes essential to determine its role, steps, skills, and various career opportunities in this field. With this 2024 guide, you will understand and can easily identify which credentials align with your professional goals and how to become a cloud architect.
- Understanding the Role of a Cloud Architect
- Steps to Becoming a Cloud Architect
- Essential Skills Required to Become a Successful Cloud Architect
- Career Opportunities for Cloud Architects
- Advancement Opportunities and Career Development
- How to Prepare for a Career as a Cloud Architect?
- Resources for Becoming a Cloud Architect
- Challenges and Tips for Success
Understanding the Role of a Cloud Architect
Cloud computing is based on the internet through which computing resources like data storage and software are delivered. A cloud computing system of any company is under the responsibility of a cloud architect. The main function of any cloud architect is to develop cloud adoption plans, identify cloud application design, and create a system that helps to maintain and monitor that cloud system.
A cloud architect works at front-end and back-end platforms and handles data delivery models like SaaS (Software as a Service), PaaS (Platform as a Service), and IaaS (infrastructure as a Service). Some of the responsibilities of a cloud architect include:
- Designing and improving existing IT infrastructure.
- Attending meetings for the organization’s goals.
- Training other members and IT teams on cloud computing.
- Being updated with new trends and practices of cloud technology.
- Maintaining cloud databases and programs securely.
Importance of Cloud Computing in the Business World
Cloud computing is a technology that ensures the safety and security of any organization. It protects the system against any cyber-attacks or data breaches. Cloud computing allows companies to access resources, services, data, and applications anywhere.
Some of the reasons why it is essential in the business world are its scalability, innovation, improved DevOps, flexibility, cost-effectiveness, enhanced security and compliance, and lowered complexity of IT management. Cloud computing also offers multiple service offerings and has continued industry growth.
Steps to Becoming a Cloud Architect
The cloud architect’s position comes with lots of responsibilities. Companies offer this job role to experts or specialists who have experience and skills in this field. You can follow the following steps to become a cloud architect and create a successful career in the cloud architecture field:
Step 1: Earn a Relevant Degree or Certification
If you have an interest in computer science or information technology and want to be a cloud architect one day, you can start your journey by earning a school-level diploma degree. You can pursue this diploma course in fields like maths, science, or computer programming.
You can also earn college credits before graduation by pursuing advanced placement courses. Moreover, to get hands-on experience, you can apply for a part-time role in entry-level positions.
These degree or certification courses will help you build skills and knowledge relevant to the cloud architect field.
Step 2: Gain Professional Experience
After completion of a high school diploma and graduation degree, you must look to get some professional experience to give your career a boost. A job experience will provide you with in-depth knowledge and practical IT skills.
You can start with any entry-level or mid-level jobs to get yourself familiar with the IT work environment and duties. You may also get some training on your job to equip you with the latest technology and trends.
Some universities also want candidates to possess certain skills and experience before applying for a master’s program.
Step 3: Obtain Certifications
To be recognized as a professional or expert, you can get a relevant certification. Various cloud architect certifications offer candidates an opportunity to get knowledge and increase their confidence in the architecture field.
One can easily obtain any of these certifications by taking sectional tests and qualifying for their exam. These certifications are recognized globally and improve the credibility of candidates. Some certifications focus on particular industry-related skills, while others offer education based on cloud platforms that help you gain extensive knowledge.
These certifications, like CCSP – Certified Cloud Security Professional, will help you to prepare for senior-level roles in the IT field, such as a cloud architect.
Step 4: Develop Technical Skills
Besides your training and experience, you must have the right skills and competencies to be a successful cloud architect. The process of updating your skill set for cloud architecture is a never-ending one. You need to be updated with the latest trends and technologies to shift your expertise and acquire more advanced skills.
Cloud architect skills involve technical skills and soft skills. Soft skills can be achieved easily, while technical skills require extra effort. Some of these skills include programming, operating system knowledge, being friendly with machine learning, etc. So, it becomes important to develop these cloud architect skills to become a successful cloud architect.
Step 5: Stay Updated on Industry Trends
The cloud computing industry is ever-changing and very dynamic. Trends and patterns always vary in this world full of the internet. Regular monitoring, optimizing, and troubleshooting cloud environments is essential.
One must be aware of all newly developed techs and stay updated on all the industry trends to ensure reliable cloud solutions and operations. This way, you will be able to collaborate with different teams and learn from others during the process.
Step 6: Build a Strong Network
Network building is the essence of one’s life. If you have a robust network, you will easily get relevant jobs and will have someone to assist during the cloud architect career path. You can build a network through LinkedIn or any social media. You can even join associations of cloud architects.
There are many communities built by professional and successful cloud architects to help their subordinates and juniors grow and learn. So, get connected to such communities or groups, acquire skills, and get tips to prepare for your journey through their experiences.
Step 7: Gain Experience with Different Cloud Platforms
You must have a thorough understanding and knowledge of cloud services to achieve a step above your ground. You have to be familiar with big public cloud computing platforms like AWS, GCP, Microsoft Azure, Oracle, IBM Cloud infrastructure, and Digital Ocean.
If you are familiar with these platforms and have acquired knowledge of working on these platforms, you will be on the in-demand list for many companies.
So, gain all these skills and experience to comply with the requirements and be a recognized cloud architect worldwide.
Essential Skills Required to Become a Successful Cloud Architect
Cloud architecture is a senior role that requires robust experience and knowledge. Along with these, you need to have certain cloud architect skills like communication, management, and presentation skills. Let’s have a look at some of the most in-demand skills to get a high cloud architect salary:
- Cloud competency is the most essential, which helps to ensure better performance and accurate results.
- As a cloud architects expert, you need to know all about cloud competency and what its level is. Cloud competency has four levels – awareness, proficiency, leverage, and collaboration.
- If you gain expertise in all these levels, you will handle the trickiest part of the journey easily.
- Technical skills are acquired through training, in-office experience, and practical work.
- These skills involve a better understanding of programming languages like Java, Python, PHP, Ruby on Rails, Node.js, etc.
- Project management skills are also needed when working in the company to lead and manage projects that focus on cloud computing.
Robust Infrastructure Knowledge
- You must have IT infrastructure knowledge and experience. This helps the company to build a better IT system and secure its database against any external malicious activities.
- You must be familiar with the cloud system and operating system of the organization. This will help you identify the strengths and weaknesses of the system. You can analyze the weaknesses and strengthen them with your input.
Understanding of Architectural Principles
- Know how to work on an automated process system.
- Ability to integrate different parts of the IT system in a single place.
- Knowledge of databases, functional features, and networks.
- You can have a better understanding of cloud architecture principles.
Proficiency in Security and Networking
- Proficiency in IT security is necessary to protect information from unauthorized access or external hackers.
- You need to have a high-level understanding of critical security concepts such as firewalls.
- Cloud security helps organizations to store valuable data safely. Therefore, this skill is the top priority of the organization.
- Knowledge of networking like TCP, IP, HTTPS, CDN, and DNS is very necessary.
Ability to Adapt and Learn Continuously
To become a successful cloud architect and be the best in your field, you need to remain updated with new technology and advanced features of cloud computing. You must have the ability to adapt to the environment and work in that situation progressively. Furthermore, you need to be enthusiastic and always ready to learn new skills and concepts.
Career Opportunities for Cloud Architects
The cloud architecture field has a wide scope and various career opportunities. Some job opportunities for cloud architects are as follows:
- Azure cloud architect
- Security Architect
- Solutions Architect
- AWS cloud solutions architect
- AWS specialist
- Service cloud architect
- Data Architect
The average base salary of a cloud architect is around $1,46,298 per year in the USA. And in India, the average salary goes around Rs. 22,13,196 annually. And it is expected to increase as the demand for cloud architects increases within various industries.
Today, almost every industry is looking for cloud architects. This is why there are many job opportunities for cloud architects worldwide. Many engineering, programming, and IT sector industries are facing a shortage of cloud architecture field employees.
Apart from these, various other industries like business, finance, education, government, or the health sector are looking for skilled cloud architects.
Advancement Opportunities and Career Development
The cloud architect career path has many opportunities and wide scope in the future. The cloud certification helps candidates to be a professional in the cloud computing field. This certification provides unique solutions for companies to plan, implement, and execute cloud architect strategies. Cloud computing has huge career growth with high potential, as it has various benefits to increase efficiency and save money for an organization.
Today, many businesses have moved their operations to the cloud due to its flexibility and scalability. The impact of cloud computing is growing on IT industries, and in the future, every industry will adopt this cloud technology in their system. This will create advanced opportunities for professional cloud architects.
Following are some career development options that one will have in the cloud computing field:
- Cloud Architect
- Cloud Engineer
- Security Cloud Engineer
- Cloud Consultant
- Data Scientist
- UI Developer
- DevOps Engineer
How to Prepare for a Career as a Cloud Architect?
Cloud architecture is the process of designing systems of computing applications, data, and other resources. It is delivered as a service over the Internet. There are various methods involved in cloud architecture.
This industry requires top skills and knowledge of cloud computing. This is one of the highest-paying fields in the cloud computing industry. To obtain the qualifications for a cloud architect, you need to follow certain steps:
Developing a Strong Foundation
First, you need to clear your fundamentals in cloud computing. Building a strong foundation is a must, as you have to work in the field to protect companies’ databases and systems. You can get your high school diploma or secondary education in related subjects to develop a basic understanding of the field. Moreover, a graduation degree in information architecture, computer science, information technology, or cloud computing can help you gain the required knowledge.
Degree coursework will develop your understanding of working with AWS or Azure platforms. A better understanding of IT foundation, management, networks, cloud security, application development, and programming will help you in your cloud architecture certification exams too. There are many cloud architect certification courses that you can take to excel in the cloud architecture field and earn a high salary.
Building Technical Skills
Once you develop a strong foundation in cloud architecture, you must gain certain skills required for the profile. Technical skills are essential, along with the knowledge to be a professional cloud architect. As a cloud architect is a senior profile, it requires advanced skills and knowledge to adapt to the situations, handle projects, and protect companies’ systems against any cyber-attacks or data breaches.
Building skills involves mastering concepts of networking, security, and storage. Understanding operating systems is essential as you need to work on a company’s system and identify the possibilities of any external action. You can take some certification courses to build such cloud architect skills. Here are some certifications that will help you build all the required skills:
Networking and Professional Experience
A well-designed network will help businesses to maximize their performance of servers and applications. You should have a better understanding of networking, its protocols, and security strategies. The cloud architect’s salary depends on their level of experience and the industry they work in.
Cloud architects who work in the IT industry are expected to earn a higher salary than any non-IT industry. The proper training and experience are what matters most to earn a high salary in this field. So, you must get some hands-on practical experiences to level up in your journey.
Resources for Becoming a Cloud Architect
If you don’t know how to become a cloud architect and what resources to follow, you must check out the following points:
Online Courses and Certifications
Today, in a world full of the internet, there is a wide range of resources available on cloud architecture. Various books, PDFs, notes, and videos are accessible easily to the aspirants. You can use these online resources to prepare for your journey as a cloud architect. Furthermore, if you don’t have time and want to get fully prepared instructor-led courses to guide you in this field, you can do relevant certification courses. Such certifications will help you prepare for the important topics and will give you in-demand practical skills for future positions.
Networking Events and Workshops
There are many communities and networks of professional cloud architects who guide their juniors or aspirants to the cloud architect career path. They organize various events and workshops for the aspirants to help. You can connect with them and share your confusion or experience to get suggestions from them.
Moreover, you can learn from their journey, their mistakes, and their strengths. This will help you create your preparation plan for the certification exams. You can also build your network through social platforms like LinkedIn or Twitter. This will also increase your chances of being recommended for senior job roles.
Challenges and Tips for Success
While preparing for the cloud architect journey, you need to be very patient and work smartly to deal with various challenges in the journey. Even if you become a successful cloud architect, you will have challenges dealing with complex systems and data. To handle such situations, you must follow certain tips. Following are some tips that every cloud architect should follow to be successful in their career:
At times of difficulty, remember your basics and most relevant method to deal with the situation. Do not panic; be patient, and communicate effectively with your team for a solution.
Continuous Learning and Adaptability
With time, technology advances, and you must be aware of these technologies to be ahead in your field. Studying new techniques will allow you to engage in continuous learning and improvements. You will become more adaptable to the situation and can easily handle the complexity.
Learn Multiple Coding Languages
Coding languages are the most important qualifications for a cloud architect. You should learn multiple coding languages to connect with the system easily and accurately. It will help you to deal with any kind of situation with ease. Your credentials and abilities with technology will improve as a professional.
A cloud architect is a senior position in the IT department of any organization. The senior position comes with high responsibility and credibility. Therefore, to become a successful cloud architect, you must work hard, build technical skills, get certified, and add professional experience to your resume or CV.
If you are an IT professional wanting to learn how to work with the public cloud, enroll in the CompTIA Cloud+ course. This course prepares you to pass the CompTIA Cloud+ (CV0-003) exam and earn the corresponding certification.
However, if you are someone who is looking for cloud security education and wants to acquire the skills needed to develop strong cloud security, join the CCSLA’s C)CSO – Certified Cloud Security Officer course.
Moreover, you can fulfill the high-demand cloud security job requirements with the CCSP – Certified Cloud Security Professional course.
Q1: What is a Cloud Architect and what do they do?
Answer: A Cloud Architect is a technology professional responsible for overseeing a company’s cloud computing strategy. This includes cloud adoption plans, cloud application design, cloud management and monitoring, and overall cloud governance. Their primary role is to ensure that the cloud infrastructure aligns with the business’s goals and needs.
Q2: What are the first steps to becoming a Cloud Architect?
Answer: The first steps include obtaining a foundational education in computer science or a related field, gaining a solid understanding of cloud computing basics, and developing a strong foundation in networking, programming, and database management.
Q3: Are there specific certifications required to become a Cloud Architect?
Answer: While not always required, certifications can be highly beneficial. Popular certifications include AWS Certified Solutions Architect, Microsoft Certified: Azure Solutions Architect Expert, and Google Certified Professional Cloud Architect. These certifications validate your cloud architecture knowledge and skills.
Q4: How important is hands-on experience in cloud computing for aspiring Cloud Architects?
Answer: Hands-on experience is crucial. It’s recommended to work in roles that involve cloud services, such as cloud support, cloud engineering, or systems administration, to gain practical experience with cloud platforms and their real-world applications.
Q5: What programming languages should a Cloud Architect be familiar with?
Q6: How can one gain practical experience in cloud architecture?
Answer: Practical experience can be gained through working on real-world projects, either in a professional setting or through personal projects. Participating in internships, contributing to open-source cloud projects, and using cloud providers’ free tier services for practice are also effective ways.
Q7: What soft skills are important for a Cloud Architect?
Answer: Key soft skills include strong communication and collaboration abilities, problem-solving skills, strategic thinking, and a capacity for continuous learning. Cloud Architects often need to explain complex concepts to non-technical stakeholders and work within diverse teams.
Q8: How does one stay updated with the latest cloud technologies and trends?
Answer: Staying updated involves continuous learning. This can be achieved through attending industry conferences, participating in webinars, enrolling in advanced courses, following cloud technology blogs, and being active in professional tech communities.
Q9: What is the role of DevOps in Cloud Architecture?
Answer: DevOps practices are integral to cloud architecture, focusing on automation, continuous integration and delivery, and efficient deployment strategies. Understanding DevOps principles is essential for designing and managing effective cloud solutions.
Q10: Can someone without an IT background become a Cloud Architect?
Answer: Yes, it’s possible, but it requires dedication. They would need to start with foundational IT knowledge, followed by specialized training in cloud computing. Building a portfolio through personal or freelance projects can also help demonstrate their skills to potential employers.
Q11: What is the typical career path for a Cloud Architect?
Answer: The typical career path starts with roles in IT support, network administration, or software development. From there, moving into cloud-related roles such as cloud engineer or developer, before advancing to a Cloud Architect position, is common.
Q12: Are there any specific industries that need Cloud Architects more than others?
Answer: Cloud Architects are in demand across various industries, especially in technology, finance, healthcare, and retail sectors. Any industry that relies on cloud computing technology for business operations requires Cloud Architects for efficient cloud infrastructure management.