Cloud Architect Vs. Cloud Engineer

Cloud architects identify their company's computing needs and create cloud-based system designs for them. Cloud engineers also work on cloud-based system design and they may work on cloud system security and cloud-based programs as well.

Comparing Cloud Architects to Cloud Engineers

Cloud architects and cloud engineers both work with cloud-based computing systems. They require comparable training and years of experience because they perform many similar tasks.

Job Title Educational Requirements Median Salary (2018)* Job Outlook (2016-2026)**
Cloud Architects Bachelor's degree $127,607 6% (computer network architects)
Cloud Engineers Bachelor's degree $91,963 6% (computer network architects)

Sources: *PayScale.com; **U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Responsibilities of Cloud Architects vs. Cloud Engineers

Cloud engineers are responsible for all aspects of a cloud-based system. They ensure that the architects have properly designed cloud-based servers while architects focus on creating system designs. Both share the responsibility of ensuring that the systems developed will meet the needs of clients. Cloud engineers may be involved in developing goals with management for system improvements. They will direct architects and others in their work to meet the production goals that they establish. Both may be involved with establishing production schedules and assigning tasks to other staff.

Cloud Architects

Cloud architects are cloud system designers. They need excellent communication skills to interact with others as they're developing the system plan. They must have a clear understanding of the needs of their company and how cloud computing will be used so that they develop a system that will meet customer needs. They also need to know computer programming languages, such as Python, SQL, and JavaScript. Employers may also look for those with experience in Microsoft languages like Azure or similar systems.

Job responsibilities of a cloud architect include:

  • Overseeing transfer of data from traditional to cloud-based services
  • Installing and configuring software
  • Maintaining cloud-based services
  • Creating operating procedures
  • Identifying and correcting problems
  • Creating production and migration schedules

Cloud Engineers

Cloud engineers focus on the infrastructure of cloud-based computing systems. In their role they produce documentation outlining the design of their systems. They have a wider role because they deal with both computer hardware and computer software. They need to know programming languages, such as Python, and be familiar with different operating systems. They also need excellent problem-solving skills to address performance issues. Experience with Linux and Amazon Web Services is highly sought after.

Job responsibilities of a cloud engineer include:

  • Meeting with managers and clients
  • Constructing cloud-based servers
  • Overseeing the work of cloud architects and other staff
  • Assessing the software needs of their business
  • Ensuring cloud-based systems and programs are secure
  • Testing systems

Related Careers

If a career as a cloud architect or a cloud engineer sounds appealing, then you may also be interested in other information technology careers, such as being an information security specialist or a software engineer. Explore these careers through the articles linked below.


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