In today’s digital arena, cloud computing has become a norm for businesses to handle all their technical workload (programs, applications, etc.). It has taken the technological world by storm owing to its ability to reduce costs, increase speed, increase productivity, and efficiency. The nebulous concept of cloud might be intimidating for non-techies, but we would simplify the definition here. In this article let us look into all about Cloud Consultants.
Cloud is the internet, and cloud computing is a model that enables convenient and ubiquitous on-demand network access to a shared pool of computing resources like servers, networks, applications, services, etc. It is different from the traditional IT hosting services since in a cloud environment the business does not own or support the infrastructure to run their programs. The software and services run through the internet as opposed to the traditional system of hard drives or private servers.
Cloud computing services are mostly supported by a third-party, and users only pay for the services they use. By eliminating the need for companies to retain copies of programs, materials, etc. on their own systems, it facilitates remote access so that employees could easily work from home.
This makes the job and role of a cloud consultant an important and lucrative one.
In this article, let us look into:
- Who is Cloud Consultant
- Cloud Consultant Job Description
- Required Qualification and Skills
- Cloud Consultant Certifications
- Roles of Cloud Consultant
- Cloud Consultant Salary
1. Who is Cloud Consultant
A cloud consultant job encompasses a gamut of roles and responsibilities. Here one might wonder what a consultant does?
A cloud consultant, in brief, is someone who specializes in cloud systems and can suggest clients with the right design and architecture as part of their cloud solutions. The cloud solutions consultant is a person who has the knowledge of existing cloud products as well as the know-how of creating or modifying programming code.
2. Cloud Consultant Job Description
Their particular job might vary a lot, depending on specific roles, but broadly cloud computing consultants perform the following jobs:
- Research on the client’s day-to-day duties by asking questions and other means.
- Analyzing client data to understand and propose the best cloud solution which will meet the customer’s needs in the most cost-effective and efficient manner.
- Implement the cloud system and also customize it to suit the specific requirements of their clients.
- Designing migration policies and usage of cloud services.
- Migrate current traditional systems of businesses onto the Cloud environment.
- Help design high-level architecture of applications by selecting the most appropriate platform.
- Core technical and specialized tasks like moving IBM z/OS workloads to AWS.
- Facilitate the efficient use of cloud computing services.
3. Required Qualification and Skills
A cloud consultant wears many hats at the job. He could be a database specialist, security expert, application developer, infrastructure manager, and a few other specialties. The basic educational qualification required is only a bachelor’s degree, which is a necessity. That degree could be in computer science, information science, engineering, or information technology. If a cloud consultant does a course in business administration, it is a bonus for him/her as this proficiency would prepare him to take the consulting role more efficiently.
Apart from formal education, few other skills that are part of a cloud consultant job description are:
- He or she must have strong customer service skills as their primary service is to meet the requirements of their clients.
- To be able to recommend a good cloud strategy, a cloud consultant needs to have analytical abilities since their job demands reviewing a lot of customer information.
- Each client can have varying and unique needs, so a cloud consultant must possess problem-solving skills to know the kinds of customization needed in the software systems to fulfill each of the client’s requirements.
- A cloud strategy consultant is also required to have great communication skills so that they can validate their recommendations with impressive reasoning for their suggestion of various systems and applications.
- It is also beneficial for an associate cloud consultant to have in-depth knowledge of at least one operating system from the many available in the market like Linux, Windows, Solaris, Ubuntu, Unix, etc.
- A good hands-on experience or understanding of networking will help a cloud applications consultant perform his role with more authority. TCP/IP, DNS, IP addresses, and HTTP are some of the networking protocols a cloud architect consultant must build his/her expertise in.
- Security is one of the most important and essential features in cloud computing hence a cloud computing consultant job description specifies the need to have a high level of understanding about key security principles and concepts.
- A minimal understanding of computer programming knowledge is a bonus and proves to be helpful, though it is not one of the must-have cloud consultant skills.
4. Cloud Consultant Certifications
A cloud consultant certification validates your skills in cloud computing which is a big differentiator for an IT decision-maker to employ a cloud consultant. Cloud consultant certification in your resume would make you stand out and also ensure higher salaries. Some of the top certification courses in the cloud computing area are:
- AWS Certified Solutions Architect – With this certification, you gain extensive technical knowledge on developing and deploying a highly scalable and available system on AWS (Amazon web services) platforms.
- Microsoft Certified Azure Solutions Architect – MS Azure is emerging as a market leader and this certification needs you to have expertise in areas like network, storage, computing, and security for creating solutions on the MS Azure platform. It has two exams that one needs to pass in order to be MS Azure certifies solutions architect:
- AZ-300 exam – This focuses on Azure technologies
- AZ-301 exam – This one tests your designing capabilities.
- Google certified professional cloud architect – GCP certified cloud architect has become a very valuable certification in cloud computing in 2019 as IT professionals’ use of Google cloud techniques has been on an upward trend. GCP is a value add for operations team members, enterprise architects, and system administrators.
- AWS Certified SysOps Administrator – As per salary reports, AWA SysOps administrator certification is the 4th most popular certification in 2019, in the IT division. This certificate validates a cloud consultant’s expertise in deploying, managing, and operating on the AWS platform.
- CCSP Certified Cloud Security Professional – As discussed above, security is an essential area that a cloud consultant must be well versed with. A CCSP certification in security would prove a strong security acumen.
5. Roles of Cloud Consultant
Cloud computing offers a range of jobs and roles which a cloud consultant can choose from. A core cloud computing could be your choice or you could choose from one of the related roles that could give you exposure to cloud computing. Some of the popular roles are:
- Cloud Security Engineer.
- Cloud Infrastructure Engineer
- Cloud Operations Manager
- Cloud Support Engineer
- Cloud Software Engineer.
6. Cloud Consultant Salary
Cloud computing consultant salary is comparable to those of systems analysts as both assess the IT needs of their customers and help them operate more efficiently. As of the year 2019, the average salary of a cloud consultant is 107,650 USD annually (as per indeed.com). The salary distribution shows a minimum of USD 33,000 and a maximum of USD 224,000 based on 158 salaries.
If you are looking for an extensive course in Cloud Computing, then the 5.5-month online Postgraduate Certificate Program In Cloud Computing offered by Jigsaw Academy can be of help. This program helps interested learners become complete Cloud professionals.