Cloud architects play a pivotal role in IT departments. They oversee different cloud computing strategies, including cloud application design, adoption plans, and monitoring and management. Owing to these responsibilities, you must prepare adequately for your upcoming interview if you are eyeing a cloud architect role. Let us look at some common cloud architect questions to expect in your scheduled interview.
1. Why Are You Interested In This Job?
I am currently looking for new advancement opportunities that I believe this job can offer me. I would also love to meet your dedicated and highly trained employees and share useful insights to improve the organization. Lastly, I would like to take on more responsibilities, which this position can help me fulfil. I am confident I will do an excellent job if considered for this position.
2. What Are The Roles Of A Cloud Architect?
My main job as a cloud architect is to design and maintain the cloud computing architecture of organizations, allowing them to unlock the flexibility and adaptability they desire. I usually apply my skills, experience, and expertise to design cloud solutions depending on the business needs of an organization, work with other cloud architects and IT employees to find solutions to cloud-related problems, and ensure that the various cloud computing solutions are well-maintained. I also oversee cloud computing strategies, including application design, adoption plans, and monitoring. Other roles include overseeing application deployment in cloud environments, offering consulting services to the organization, and performance monitoring.
3. What Are The Skills That A Cloud Architect Needs To Be Successful?
Designing and maintaining cloud computing solutions architecture is quite a heavy task. It, therefore, requires several technical skills, such as:
- Change management for proper planning and execution of changes.
- Program leadership for program planning and organization around an entity’s cloud implementation.
- Collaboration skills to effectively work with other IT professionals and architecture team members.
- Orchestration skills for the maintenance of cloud infrastructure areas.
- Governance skills for benefits and risks management during critical management points implementation.
Other necessary skills include networking, programming, communication, virtualization, and big data.
4. Walk Us Through How You Would Migrate An Application To The Cloud
Depending on the circumstances, I usually use different strategies to migrate applications to the cloud. They include:
- Re-hosting- This is one of the most common ways of application migration. It involves the redeployment of applications to cloud-based hardware following the configuration of the application host. It’s one of my favourite strategies, given that it is quick and easy.
- Repurchasing- This option involves identifying and purchasing a SaaS platform compatible with the application. It is usually costlier than the other options.
- Re-platforming- This strategy requires the direct running of an application on the cloud without changing the core architecture of the application.
- Refactoring- Given its resource-intensive nature, I usually use this strategy as a last resort. It comes in handy when adding new features, improving performance, and scaling services are needed.
5. How Would You Connect A Company’s On-Premise Applications To Cloud Services?
Until recently, I would load application-related data using VPNs and FTP, but they have since ceased to be efficient regarding integration. I currently use hybrid integration, which has proven faster and more efficient. Whenever the need arises, I first choose an excellent cloud provider that guarantees me extra control, such as Azure and Google Cloud, and then establish an encrypted channel to ensure more accessible communication between the on-premises applications and the private cloud platform.
6. Mention The Uses Of API Gateway
The gateway acts as the entry point for an application programming interface. It is necessary when dealing with a group of microservices that require several application programming interfaces. Developers usually use it to develop the proper application structure based on the use case. Other uses include security enforcement, authentication, load balancing, and cache management.
7. Do You Normally Experience Challenges With Lambda Impelementation?
There are two main challenges associated with Lambda implementation, i.e., term challenges and vendor lock-in.
- Term challenges- Lamda generally calls several functions when task execution takes too long, an ineffective and resource-intensive procedure.
- Vendor lock-in- Moving an application hosted on a serverless platform to a different platform leads to compatibility issues due to the supported programming languages, meaning that I usually have to give up control of the vendor, a significant challenge.
8. Why Do Cloud Architects Love AWS Lambda?
AWS Lambda is an excellent tool, allowing us to run code without worrying about server management. This serverless service executes code based on demand and can scale automatically. It can also handle up to thousands of requests per second, meaning that users are only required to pay for the computing time. Lastly, we can run codes for different application types, making it a versatile option.
9. Mention The Benefits Of Using NoSQL Databases Over Traditional Relational Databases
There are several benefits associated with using NoSQL databases. They handle large volumes of structured and unstructured data, use an object-oriented programming language that is generally flexible and easy to use, and allow the usage of scaled-out, efficient architecture, unlike their counterparts that use expensive and monolithic architecture. Lastly, NoSQL databases are helpful for development practices such as quick iterations, agile sprints, and frequent code pushes.
10. Tell Us About The Different Types Of Cloud Computing Services
I have dealt with four main types of cloud computing services, i.e., infrastructure as a service, software as a service, platform as a service, and functions as a service. IaaS platforms such as Rackspace, Amazon EC2, and Windows Azure allow users to access computing resources such as processing power, networking, and data storage capacity. In contrast, platform-as-a-service platforms such as Microsoft Azure and Google App Engine offer a computing platform and solution stack with services such as hosting solutions, DMBS, software tools for design and development, network access, and server software. On the other hand, software-as-a-service platforms such as Microsoft Office 365 offer application-level services for different business needs, such as marketing automation and CRM, while functions as a service is a recent computing service that supports serverless computing for the efficient running of codes.
11. What Are The Benefits Of Platform As A Service
Some of the benefits of PaaS include the following:
- Increased collaboration- PaaS allows developers from different locations to collaborate on similar projects owing to its location independence.
- Easier software development- PaaS platforms empower non-experts to build applications with a single-click functionality, provided that they can access a web browser.
- PaaS service providers take care of upgrades, update patches, and software maintenance, saving users from regular infrastructure upgrades and updates.
- Some SaaS platforms, such as SAP, allow users to rent virtual IT infrastructure, saving them money that would have been spent on physical infrastructure.
12. What Are The Benefits Of Saas Cloud Computing Service?
Here are a few benefits of SaaS cloud computing services:
- Software updates are generally automatic and free.
- It has no initial set-up cost. Users do not need to install any hardware, given that the service provider supplies the processing power, and the applications are generally ready for use as soon as they subscribe.
- It has a pay-as-you-go model, which is highly flexible.
- SaaS platforms are easy to access using internet-enabled devices, leading to cross-device compatibility.
- It saves enterprises from engaging IT experts during installation or updating the software on every engaged PC.
13. Why Is Function As A Service Computing Option Special?
Function-as-a-Service is a recent computing service that offers serverless computing. It empowers developers to run application codes without any administration or server maintenance. The service provider handles resource allocation, saving the cloud architect time and energy. It ensures that users do not waste money on inactive resources as they are billed based on the amount of functionality. It also offers fault-tolerant and scalable code and makes developers more efficient, explaining its popularity and broad adoption.
14. What Do You Normally Consider Before Designing A Cloud Computing System?
Every developer or cloud architect understands that certain factors must be considered before designing a cloud computing system, regardless of size or functionality. The main one is the business needs the company wishes the system to address, which generally dictates its level of scalability. The next factor of consideration is the budget. The amount of money a company or user is willing to spend dictates the type of resources that can be used in the system. The last consideration is the security measures to include in the system.
15. What Would You Prioritize On If You Got This Job?
My priority whenever I get employed in a new place is to get to know my manager and workmates as well as learn about the company as much as possible. Therefore, I would arrange meetings with the manager, team members, and key stakeholders to learn about them and their expectations. I would also take time to fully understand the organization’s goals and plans and brainstorm how I can help actualize them. Lastly, I would spare some time to learn about the company’s IT infrastructure and think of better ways to improve it.
16. Walk Us Through How You Will Relay Technical Information To Our Non-Technical Project Stakeholders?
I understand that I will engage different types of people in this job, a task I am fully prepared for. To fully and effectively explain technical concepts to non-technical stakeholders, I will use plain language and avoid jargon as much as possible. I also intend to use illustrations and real-life examples to foster understanding. Lastly, I will ask questions to assess whether the audience has understood what I had to say and further explain the necessary concepts.
17. Walk Us Through How You Would Test A New System Before Deploying It To Production
I would develop a detailed test plan outlining what should be tested and any possible changes in performance and functionality before creating a test environment for deploying the system and comparing results to confirm if they are at par with the current production system. After ensuring there are no errors, I would repeat the procedure and ensure the results are consistent before moving on to the next phase.
18. Mention How You Would Make A System More Scalable
I have previously worked on less scalable systems; therefore, I understand what to do in such a scenario. I would begin by determining why the system is less scalable before finding an excellent solution from various options. In my last related project, I discovered that the system was less scalable due to too many instances, which I responded to by using serverless computing to reduce the number of instances. I have also had to migrate to cloud providers with better scalability in the past when I couldn’t find any solutions within the current infrastructure.
19. Can You Work With Large Teams Of Engineers And Developers?
Yes. I have worked with large teams before, experiences that have made me a better cloud architect and team player. I know how to collaborate with other IT professionals on projects, regardless of their sizes. I am usually available for regular team meetings scheduled to discuss project progress. In my previous workplace, I led more than 30 brainstorming sessions, helping the team develop excellent ideas for process improvement. I am happy to report that I have also acquired leadership and problem-solving skills from such experiences, which I am ready to use for the benefit of this organization.
20. Walk Us Through The First Thing You Normally Do Whenever You Have A Cloud Computing Design Project?
I usually take time to brainstorm and organize myself whenever I have a cloud computing design project. I then find out what the client needs from their system to help me decide the best cloud computing system for them. It also allows me to understand the company’s goals for better cloud computing design. Once I know all the system requirements, I devise a list detailing all the components needed to create the system.
21. How Would You Respond To A Flaw In Your Cloud Computing Designs?
Whenever I encounter a design flaw, I usually engage my expertise, problem-solving ability, and decision-making skills. I would take some time to understand the flaw and determine its origin before trying to fix it independently. If I fail, I would involve the manager, supervisor, or more skilled team members to help find solutions or a way forward. I may also have to shut down the entire system until we find a solution or engage the team to come up with a solution as we fix the issue.
22. Your Resume Looks Impressive. However, Could You Tell Us Some Of Your Favorite Cloud Computing Platforms?
I have used several computing platforms in my career. However, I am particularly fond of Amazon Web Services, which has played a pivotal role in the success of my career. Using the different AWS services, I have made systems more or less scalable to match business needs. I also love Microsoft Azure, a platform that I usually recommend for entities considering cloud computing solutions for the first time because of its advanced solutions, such as AI capabilities.
23. How Do You Normally Deal With Bugs In Your System Designs?
It is normal to encounter bugs when or after designing a cloud computing system. I usually take time to find out what caused the bug, which may take several minutes or hours. However, if my efforts do not yield any fruits, I involve the team or my colleagues to leverage their knowledge and expertise. We would then analyze the system, discover what caused the bug, and devise a new design to remedy it. I am happy with my bug management experience so far.
24. Do You Change Your Personal Cloud Often?
Yes. Cloud architects must make changes to their personal clouds regularly. I make changes to mine at least once every three weeks to help me stay updated with new technology and better understand various applications capable of positively impacting my work and productivity. I have become more familiar with several cloud platforms over the years and enjoyed a variety of features, which I am generally ready to share with friends or personal clients.
25. Do You Have Any Additional Qualifications And Certifications?
I have three additional certifications which have helped me thrive in my career. They include:
- Google Professional Cloud Architect, signifying my ability to design, plan, manage, and provision cloud architecture. It also validates my cloud security, architecture optimization, and compliance knowledge.
- AWS Certified Solutions Architect, certifying my ability to manage Amazon Web Services infrastructure and applications and understanding of AWS management services and deployment.
- Microsoft Certified Azure Solutions Architect Expert validating my skills, including cloud architecture design, virtualization, business continuity, and security abilities with Azure Cloud Platforms.
I am also considering pursuing other certifications such as Arcitura Certified Cloud ArcArchitect IBM Certified Solution Architect- Cloud Solutions Architect v4.
Above are some of the frequently asked questions in cloud architect interviews. Ensure you come up with the correct answers to convince the interviewer that you are the perfect person for the job. We wish you all the best and ensure that you groom properly for your interview if it is scheduled to be physical.