Software architecture is an integral part of software development. It plays a crucial role in defining the organization of the components of a software system. With software architecture, you can build a blueprint for software application and development and decide the guidelines that govern the whole process. This creates great scope for software architects to help organizations in the software development process. With that said, the subsequent sections will help you understand how to become a software architect, the skills required, and answers to other common questions. 

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Who Is a Software Architect?

A software architect creates plans for project-specific technical requirements and builds technical standards for tools, platforms, or software coding standards. The scope of work for software architects at large is to determine processes and technologies that are ideal for the development team to use. Since these experts have broad technical knowledge, many organizations also hire them to troubleshoot coding issues. In broader terms, a software architect helps the organization have structured software solutions as per the technological needs and goals of the organization. 

Why Become a Software Architect?

Working as a software architect is a meaningful choice for candidates who take immense interest in software development and designing. Organizations are on a constant lookout for professionals who can help them develop scalable platforms and optimize the performance of these platforms. A software architect can provide valuable insights in this direction and help the organization make the most out of these platforms and software while saving costs. Therefore, owing to a high demand for professional and skilled software architects, a career in software architecture can be highly rewarding both in terms of financial growth and experience. 

How to Become a Software Architect

A software architect should have some specific technical skills, which are more achievable when you have a systematic approach to follow. Here are the steps that you can follow if you aspire to pursue a career as a software architect.

Basic Qualifications

People who opt for a science discipline after completing their 10th grade education are eligible for entrance exams for engineering after 12th standard. Opting for computer science in addition to your core science subjects can be an added advantage as it familiarizes you with the basics of computers and some common programming languages.

Bachelor’s Degree

You can opt for a bachelor’s degree in computers or pursue a B.Tech as both these courses are planned to acquaint students with software design and development.

Gain Experience

You can opt for internships throughout your undergraduate education to have a sense of the practical work environment and to develop some basic yet crucial skills. This also helps you network with professionals and understand the current market requirements while offering you a competitive advantage.

Master’s Degree

While having a master’s degree is optional, it might be useful for you if you are willing to work more on your technical knowledge and skills. Further, you will be eligible to apply at companies that require candidates with a master’s degree. You can take certain competitive examinations, such as GATE to pursue M.Tech or master’s in computers from a trusted college or university. This further helps you build industry-specific skills.

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Certifications

Since a software architect should be well-versed with programming languages, such as Python and Java, pursuing a certificate course in these languages will help you hone your skills and gain the required credentials. Further, you can also look for certification courses that can be pursued while you work, so that you have the advantage of experience while also developing certain skill sets.

Work on your Resume

Make sure that you keep your resume updated with your latest qualifications, experience, and your skill sets. When you apply for a specific job role, go through the requirements and make it a point to align your resume with those requirements so that the hirer can easily match your skills to their requirements. 

Key Skills a Software Architect Must Have

A software architect is required to possess both hard skills and soft skills to be successful. While hard skills help them fulfill their core responsibilities, soft skills complement their hard skills and help these professionals collaborate well and lead their teams. Here are the specific skills that a software architect must possess-

Hard Skills

  • One of the core requirements that is often listed for software architect positions is Unified Modeling Language (UML), as it helps these professionals construct new systems and visualize them effectively.
  • Expertise in one or more common programming languages, such as Java, JavaScript, C, Ruby, Python, etc.
  • Individuals should be deeply familiar with software architecture, AWS, applications development, database design, and DevOps practices to create a DevOps environment, to become a successful software architect. 

Soft Skills

  • Leadership skills – Software architects are often hired for positions wherein they lead a team and coordinate with several others. This requires great leadership qualities that enable them to delegate work efficiently so that deadlines are met without hassles while also managing multiple projects at the same time.
  • Problem-solving skills – These professionals are also responsible for determining client needs and thinking of ways to optimize their experience. This requires problem-solving skills to come up with possible solutions to solve a problem and make the right decision.
  • Communication skills – Since software architects work in teams and collaborate with other professionals, effective communication skills are key to ensuring technical information is conveyed with accuracy.
  • Attention to detail – Every software project requires a keen eye for detail to ensure every aspect of the project is taken into consideration for elevating the client’s experience.
  • Organizational skills – Organizational skills empower software architects to create workable plans for software development in a systematic manner. These skills enable the professional to think in a methodical and organized manner and also help them design complex and large-scale UML diagrams. 

How Much Does a Software Architect Earn? (India and USA)

In India, the salary of a software architect may range from INR 13,00,000 to INR 47,20,00 per annum. The national average salary is estimated to be INR 25,70,00 per annum. The national average salary for a software architect in the United States is estimated to be $1,42,00 per annum. With experience, a Senior Software Architect may earn an estimated $1,62,00 per year. A lead software architect may earn about $1,51,000 in the United States.

The salary of Software Architects depends on various factors, such as the skills they possess and the organization they work for. Further, the location, or to be more specific, the city or state where a software architect works can also influence their annual salary and their career trajectory. 

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Frequently Asked Questions

1. Which industries employ software architects?

Software architects can work in different industries depending on their skills and preferences. Some industries that commonly work with software architects include, but are not limited to retail, manufacturing, finance, and software development. IT services or businesses actively look for software architects, and some of the less common industries may include healthcare, R&D, and the government sector to develop the right provisions for software development.

2. Is there a demand for software architects?

One of the job roles with highest demand in the IT sector is software architecture. In the modern day, every industry has to equip itself with software products to elevate the experience of their clients and customers. And a software architect has a crucial role to play in the whole software development process to ensure quality outcomes.

3. What qualifications do I need to become a software architect?

You can become a software architect if you have a bachelor’s degree in computer engineering or any related domain. A software architect should have a deep understanding of software development concepts along with coding skills. Such a degree would equip you with the basic skills to become a software architect.

4. Is it easy to become a software architect?

One thing that may make it relatively tricky to become a software architect is the fact that there is no formal training or a specific course that prepares you towards becoming a software architect. It takes a combination of skills and technical knowledge to become one. However, if you are keen to learn and have a passion for computer sciences, you can work towards becoming a software architect with ease.

5. How long does it take to become a software architect?

It takes about 4 years of full-time study along with some work experience to become a software architect. 

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Conclusion

If you have the basic qualifications to become a software architect, all it takes is a strong hold of specific knowledge and skills to have a professional edge in the field. You can achieve that by pursuing certificate courses, such as Simplilearn’s Post Graduate Program in Full Stack Web Development course designed to lay a strong foundation and help you master skills to become a successful software architect. 

If you have any questions or doubts, feel free to post them in the comments below. Our team will get back to you at the earliest.

About the Author

SimplilearnSimplilearn

Simplilearn is one of the world’s leading providers of online training for Digital Marketing, Cloud Computing, Project Management, Data Science, IT, Software Development, and many other emerging technologies.

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