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Career Path: How to Become a Solutions Architect

To stay competitive and efficient, tech-based and tech-heavy companies design integrating guidelines, best practices and processes to follow when vulnerabilities arise in applications and information systems. It is the job of the Solutions Architect to offer their services to such companies, designing and integrating information and computer systems as a solution to these vulnerabilities while following predesigned guidelines. Solutions Architects continue to be an in-demand quantity in such businesses, as they serve as consultants to their clients, offering up much-needed insight an...more

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Career Path: How to Become a Solutions Architect

To stay competitive and efficient, tech-based and tech-heavy companies design integrating guidelines, best practices and processes to follow when vulnerabilities arise in applications and information systems. It is the job of the Solutions Architect to offer their services to such companies, designing and integrating information and computer systems as a solution to these vulnerabilities while following predesigned guidelines. Solutions Architects continue to be an in-demand quantity in such businesses, as they serve as consultants to their clients, offering up much-needed insight and advice. Those interested in a career in Solutions Architecture need to be tech-savvy, have a mind for business as well as have excellent interpersonal skills.

Getting Through the Door

Gaining an entry-level position as a Solutions Architect takes a well-balanced mix of education and experience. Looking for firms that are vast in scope and have a large, dedicated technical sector may be beneficial, as they most likely welcome varying levels of experience in their Solutions Architecture teams. No matter where you may seek work in a starting position, there are certain things employers will look for you to understand as an aspiring Solutions Architect, such as:

  • A strong aptitude for computer and operating systems, database management, system security measures and various web platforms.
  • Expertise in software and hardware components and their intricacies.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and the ability to communicate advanced technical ideas to lay persons.
  • An understanding of common business practices.

Degrees and Experience

Solutions Architects often hail from a variety of backgrounds. Common degrees include a bachelor’s in information technology, computer science, software engineering or related, with some employers preferring graduate degrees. An MBA in information systems can make a Solutions Architect well-prepared for both the technical and business sides of their role.

Many Solutions Architects have five to ten years of experience working in network administration or information technology systems before moving on to this role. Having a blend of relevant work experience and education is often the best way to enter this dynamic career.

Working as a Junior Level Solutions Architect

Solutions Architects at the junior-level have proven their capabilities with integrating information systems and solutions when addressing specific business needs. They are adept at consulting their clients and guiding them through the process that they as the Solutions Architect will follow, using broader terms so those who are less technically inclined can still understand the process. The Solutions Architect at this point in their career is also deft with suggesting the products and services the client company needs to thrive, meaning a knack for sales and customer service is second nature. By excelling in their duties and showing they can take on more responsibilities, a Solutions Architect can easily advance their career.

Moving Up the Ranks

As a Solutions Architect involves several key factors. There is the need to put in the time and demonstrate your dedication of course, but also in this role, confidence is key. Being able to show your clients your mastery for designing and implementing complex technical solutions for their systems and devices will no doubt impress. Furthermore, being able to successfully convey these ideas in a simplified manner while also selling them on obtaining cutting-edge technologies for you to install and integrate into their existing systems will mean they will rely on you and your expertise for years to come.

Advance Your Career: How to become a Senior Solutions Architect

Getting set to tread the path towards senior Solutions Architect status is an impressive feat. It means that for about a decade, the Solutions Architect has had professional experience with various technical tools as well as acquired a useful stock of business knowledge and interpersonal skills along the way. Achieving a senior level in your Solutions Architect career will entail your ability to complete successful projects for a slew of clients while maintaining professional decorum along the way. There may be instances in which you attend conferences to sharpen your business or communication skills or obtain additional certifications as you advance your career, but more about that later.

Study the Core Fields

There are several intertwining fields of study that it benefits a Solutions Architect to understand as they move up the career ranks. In addition to their work in network administration and information technology systems, they are likely to come across business intelligence and complex database management systems. Having an aptitude for business intelligence will allow you to understand the technologies and strategies used by companies when they engage in data analysis. This will make you be a better candidate for giving the business advice on what solutions best meet their specific needs. Likewise, having a grasp on intricate database management systems will increase your knowledge about data collection, storage and retrieval that will assist you in your work.

Invest in Yourself

Solutions Architects who want to advance their career will find it fruitful to invest in themselves and increase their stock of knowledge. This can be done in several ways. Taking business-related coursework or receiving certification that speak to the merits of your technical skills is a sure way to impress clients and employers. Attend seminars and conferences related to Solutions Architecture as a way of staying ahead of the curve in technological advances. Networking is key to this role, as building a reputation as a formidable Solutions Architect can ensure you have steady and quality work. By putting in the effort to hone your skills, you are showing the world how determined and passionate you are.

Don’t Stop at Solutions Architecture

…check out roles that are relatable. As a Solutions Architect, this will include business analysts, who also consult and suggest solutions for client companies; design architects, who plan and design new information architectures; and software developers, those who code and deploy software that meets a specific need. Understanding the ins-and-outs of these roles will help you better define your career duties and goals as well as understand those of similar roles you are likely to encounter.

Solutions Architect Job Description

Solutions Architects are needed by client businesses to help design and implement solutions to resolve gaps and issues in their existing technology systems and devices. It is a very mindful role, as they must create these solutions while adhering to the company’s preexisting guidelines and specifications. Solutions Architects work with client managers who explain business needs as well as collaborate with the client’s technical staff to help integrate new technologies and ensure it harmonizes with existing software and hardware. Solutions Architects foster an ongoing relationship with their clients and help keep their technological systems current.

The need for the newest and fastest technology means businesses are in need of the expertise provided by Solutions Architects at all times. They may work as freelancers or be part of a company that outsources their Solutions Architects to client businesses.

What We Need Your Help With

  • Assisting clients with implementing changes in their information and computer systems.
  • Guide client tech teams with integrating new hardware and software while modifying existing structures.
  • Consulting clients on what tech solutions are best for their needs.
  • Following the guidelines prescribed by the client company.
  • Maintain ongoing relationships with clients and responding to their needs.

We Look For

  • Several years of experience with network administration and information technology systems.
  • A demonstrated proficiency with different technical platforms and software.
  • A degree in computer science, software engineering, business administration, communications or related fields is a plus.
  • Not only tech-savvy but have an excellent aptitude for business operations.
  • Exceptional interpersonal skills and the ability to explain intricate technical terminology in less complicated jargon.
  • Having the confidence to sell new technology services and devices.

These Would Also Be Nice

  • Someone who thinks fast on their feet
  • Thriving under pressure
  • Excellent at communicating with clients and colleagues at various levels.
  • Can juggle multiple projects at once
  • Is both creative and logical
  • Is detail-oriented and well-organized

Senior Solutions Architect Career Paths: Where to Go from Here

Achieving a senior level of your Solutions Architect career is both a professional and personal accomplishment. It is entirely possible that a Senior Solutions Architect will be happy to stay in this role until retirement, although some at this junction of their career see it as a time to move on.

When Solutions Architects do leave their senior position and enter a new job position, it is typically in a similar field, such as senior software developer, who will oversee teams of developers creating and deploying the next wave of cutting-edge software; project managers, who guide teams assigned to particular projects, particularly with the release of new technologies; and product manager, someone who works on all stages of the creation and release of a product, typically a technical device or service, including the marketing and design specifications.

It is just as likely Senior Solutions Architects will thrive staying right where they are, enjoying more years of successful consulting clients, designing and implementing the latest and greatest technologies and sharing your passion for technology and people with junior colleagues.

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