The role of systems architect is critical to the definition, design, deployment, and strong support of any IT project. A system architect analyzes and recommends the right combination of IT components to achieve a specific business, departmental, team, or functional goal.
They objectively analyze the desired processes and results and advise on the right combination of IT systems and components in order to achieve these goals. The architecture of the system is closely aligned with the design of the services.
Different levels of system architects
The system architect works at various levels in the IT field, from the general business strategy to the simple project consultancy.
At the highest level, system architects help define and decide on the right IT strategy and approach that best supports long-term business plans and goals.
At the medium level, system architects recommend the best tools, frameworks, hardware, software and other IT elements to achieve departmental and functional goals in the medium term.
At the lowest level, system architects consult and advise project teams on the specific software, hardware, and other elements needed to achieve defined results of the IT project.
System architects are experts in business and technology. They examine business plans and objectives, analyze technical solutions and make recommendations on the right mix of IT elements to achieve these goals.
A system architect role can be divided into five areas:
- Understand the business or departmental strategy and the desired outcome.
- Divide these results into defined parts, including products, processes and functions.
- Choose the right architecture to get what you have defined.
- Understand software, hardware and user interactions, integrations and interfaces.
Advise the project teams on the implementation of the recommended solutions.
System architects are often engineers and strategists and work with IT and business stakeholders. They should absorb large amounts of information, analyze them for key factors, and make clear and easy to implement recommendations.
Let us point out the key elements of the role of a system architect.
Understand the strategy and outcome of the business or department that you want
IT is a crucial component in almost every business process. If the company wants to launch new products, improve efficiency or gain a competitive advantage, the strategy takes this into account.
A system architect analyzes the business strategy and discusses all key areas and initiatives with top business strategists and managers. You will translate these requirements into a short, medium, and long term demand for new or improved IT skills.
Divide the results into defined parts
Once the system architect understands the business and departmental requirements, he will analyze and understand which specific IT functions are needed. You will define this in the system architecture documents for each major initiative. It becomes an important reference document to ensure the coherence and clarity of all IT projects and implementations.
The documentation may include:
- Name, purpose and result of the initiative
- The main features, functions and processes for the initiative
- General IT methodology and frameworks affecting the initiative
- Existing infrastructure and applications
- Staff needs or new resources
- Ideas for possible software and hardware solutions
Decide on the right IT architecture
If the company decides to implement an initiative, the system architect builds the planned IT architecture model. They recommend specific hardware, software, methods and IT approaches to help the company achieve the desired result.
A system architect considers the following areas:
- Alignment with the general objectives
- Specific business requirements
- Existing IT ecosystem
- New and established technologies
- IT and personal resources
- Cost control and return on investments
- End-user and customer needs and experiences
- Availability, responsiveness, reliability and resilience of critical elements
- Adaptation to architectural standards and best practices
- Management and support of IT services
Understand integrations, interfaces and interactions
A system architect does not focus solely on IT elements in isolation. It also examines integration into existing systems, interfaces with people and other applications, and user interaction with the result. UI and UX are becoming an increasingly important part of the role of system architect.
Advising project teams on recommended solutions
System architects work with project teams to turn their architecture and vision into reality. You can advise on design and construction, testing and implementation. Feedback from engineers and end users provides feedback on the development of the system to ensure that it is consistent with both business goals and user requirements.