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How to Become an Enterprise Architect

If you have a passion for solving problems and are looking to go into IT, then becoming an enterprise architect would be the perfect opportunity to enter the field. Enterprise architects optimize an organization’s IT networks and services to allow business operations to run smoothly. Enterprise architects need strong analytical and technical skills to succeed in this position.

Enterprise architects are primarily responsible for implementing and maintaining a company’s IT infrastructure. Some of their duties include evaluating internal IT systems, creating stronger IT models for accounting and financial services, finding different ways to reduce IT costs, and teaching employees how to use these networks and services to maximize business operations.

This job opportunity is perfect for anyone looking for a leadership role in information technology. It is required of enterprise architects to have a Bachelor’s degree in information systems or a similar field to understand the networking processes that help a business run efficiently, so getting an education is important. 

Sample job description

Do you love solving high-level problems? Are you great at tackling highly technical, complex problems? If so, you might be the perfect fit for our position as an enterprise architect! Enterprise architects use their deep technical understanding to develop, suggest, and implement company-wide systems. They take the needs and goals of a company and make sure that the systems being used are able to meet and exceed these ends. These architects have an enormous degree of responsibility and autonomy and seek to provide software solutions that meet and exceed expectations and look to reduce inefficiency and cost whenever possible. If this sounds like you, don’t hesitate to apply.

Typical duties and responsibilities

  • Design and build computer networks including local and wide area networks and intranets
  • Research and implement network software 
  • Supervise network administrators and network engineers, especially during the network set-up and configuration process
  • Collaborate with colleagues and executives to meet business objectives and to establish a strategy 
  • Evaluate network performance 
  • Research new technologies to strengthen the organization 

Education and experience

This position requires a bachelor’s degree in computer science, information technology, or a related field. 

Required skills and qualifications

  • Proficient in finding creative solutions to complex problems
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Ability to collaborate with and supervise others 
  • Experience with various technology methodologies and architecture applications
  • Solid leadership and organization skills
  • Detail-oriented and analytical thinker 

Preferred qualifications

  • Expertise in one cloud platform, such as Azure, AWS, or GCP
  • Strong knowledge of architecture and integration patterns
  • Excellent understanding of cloud-native, microservices, and event-driven architectures
  • 3+ years of experience

Typical work environment

Enterprise architects work in an office environment, often with a team. You should anticipate several hours seated at a computer working and occasionally having meetings with others in an office environment.

Some travel should be expected to meet with department heads, high-level executives, and others.

Typical hours

Typical work hours for this position are from 9 AM to 5 PM, Monday through Friday, in an office setting. 

Available certifications

As enterprise architects work in a variety of industries, there are many institutions that offer certifications, including:

  • CISSP Information Systems Security Architecture Professional. After obtaining the standard CISSP certification, one may add the concentration in architecture for added effect. You’ll develop a deeper understanding of architecture principles, including security, risk assessment, compliance, modeling, and governance.
  • Dell EMC Proven Professional Cloud Architect Certification. Although there is a long list of certifications to choose from, this course will focus on developing cloud services within an ITaas environment. Additionally, you’ll get to practice within a collaborative environment. This certification will provide you with practical and applicable skills and shows your commitment to working in systems architecture.
  • EC Council Certified Network Defense Architect. This certification is aimed at those seeking certification within a government or military agency. Specifically, this certification has a heavy focus on security and compliance and requires you to obtain the CEH (Certified Ethical Hacker) certification before obtaining this one. This certification will give employers confidence you have what it takes to prevent unwanted intrusions and penetrations into systems you’ve implemented.
  • Google Professional Cloud Architect. This certification will provide you with the foundational knowledge to design and implement cloud solutions. You’ll develop skills in security, compliance, management, analysis, and optimization of cloud architecture. There are no prerequisites for this exam, and it’s an excellent first step in learning and demonstrating valuable technical knowledge in the field.

Career path

This position requires a bachelor’s degree in a computer-related field. Employers may prefer candidates who have a master’s degree, as well as those with on-the-job experience. Enterprise architects may advance to positions such as computer and information systems manager and chief network architect. 

US, Bureau of Labor Statistics’ job outlook

SOC Code: 15-1241

2020 Employment165,200
Projected Employment in 2030174,200
Projected 2020-2030 Percentage Shift 5% increase
Projected 2020-2030 Numeric Shift9,000 increase

The information technology (IT) field is continually growing as businesses become more innovative. Organizations across all sectors are becoming more reliant on information technology, which means enterprise architects will continue to be vital to their success.

According to the industry website Computer Science Online, mobile technology, data security, and big data will be the core components of most organizations’ infrastructure, products, and services. Enterprise architects will be integral to an organization’s success by keeping up-to-date on technological innovations and using that knowledge to design the optimal data and communication network systems.