Cloud Engineer

The roles and responsibilities of a Cloud Engineer are varied and interesting. Less than two decades ago, the career would have been unheard of. Yet, in the 2020s, Cloud Engineering is a field in great demand - one that will have a major impact on the successful utilisation of several computer-based operations. Cloud Engineers oversee the handling of existing cloud-based processes as well as the migration of others. The demand for skilled, experienced specialists has been high for some time now as the widespread shift to cloud-based services has changed the way businesses are run. 

Roles and responsibilities - What does a Cloud Engineer do?

To put it short, a Cloud Engineer has roles and responsibilities with everything related to cloud computing. In more detail, this involves everything from the aforementioned transitioning to and managing of cloud-based services to technical support, digital strategising, and more. The nature of a Cloud Engineer’s job will vary to some extent on the type of business they are working for. A company in a period of digitalisation to cloud services could require a role with more design and planning, while another already steeped in next-gen tech would prefer a more managerial and supportive approach. 

The following is a list of more specific various responsibilities that fall under the remit of a Cloud Engineer:

  • Assessing the infrastructure of an organisation’s technological systems and making necessary migrations to the cloud
  • Overseeing working standards of cloud-based systems and making improvements as and when necessary
  • Correct configuring of various processes, including computer, network, and security systems
  • Training colleagues and stakeholders in the correct usage of cloud-based technology
  • Liaising with senior management regarding the purchase and installation of new hardware and software
  • Negotiating with suppliers for the purchase or rental of hardware, as well as for storage facilities
  • Creating functions and applications that can be used by colleagues to run cloud-based utilities
  • Ensuring all necessary security issues are taken care of, including the need to keep company data protected in the cloud

Qualities and skills needed for a successful Cloud Engineer

Successful Cloud Engineers will obviously need to be highly skilled on a technological level, and many will have a wider knowledge that isn’t just restricted to the principles of cloud computing. For example, a good understanding of issues such as computer resources, software applications and a knowledge of the market that the company operates in will all be seen as major advantages. In addition, knowledge of web security is a plus given the rise in cybercrime that has coincided with the adoption of cloud-based technologies. 

A good Cloud Engineer will be able to communicate well with others, including those with less of a technical mindset. This will prove critical as reporting on developments to senior management will be a big part of the job, as will negotiating with suppliers and other interested parties. It’s also worth noting even the best in this field will still consider themselves to be learning all the time. In fact, cloud computing is a relatively young industry and has been moving incredibly fast when it comes to new capabilities, new software, and more. 

There will be times when a Cloud Engineer works alone and other times as part of a team. The ability to remain calm under pressure will be a must, because various areas of the business will look to the specialist to provide solutions in a speedy and decisive manner. Talented Cloud Engineers tend to be single-minded and focused, and highly adept at solving even the most complex of problems.

Qualifications and technical skills - How to become a Cloud Engineer?

There are several recognised affiliations that can help when applying for a Cloud Engineer job. They include the likes of Amazon Web Services, IBM, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud. Aspiring Cloud Engineers should also invest the time necessary to complete certifications from these brands. Additionally, practical working knowledge of some of the following: Linux, Python, Java, Golang, Rust, Linux, Networking, Server Management, Docker, and Kubernetes (K8s) could all be helpful when making applications for such roles. 

Formal academic qualifications can be important when applying for Cloud Engineer jobs. A bachelor’s degree is often a requirement, preferably in subjects akin to computer engineering, management information systems, computer science, information technology or engineering. Further qualifications in anything relating specifically to the cloud will also be seen as advantageous.

Career development - What is the next step after Cloud Engineer?

After becoming a Cloud Engineer, individuals can take their skills to a range of other related jobs including more senior roles, Cloud Architect, Cloud Software Engineer, Cloud Security Engineer and both Front- and Back-End Developer. Senior Cloud Engineers will have more responsibility than those at mid-level and will often have a greater focus on sharing best practices, disaster recovery, business continuity and compliance. Meanwhile, many of these other roles are in high demand - particularly in big tech and startups. As the industry moves and evolves, career paths for current and prospective Cloud Engineers will widen in scope. More opportunities will arise and present themselves to those keeping up with the latest technologies. 

Is Cloud Engineering a respected job choice?

Being part of a new and rapidly growing industry means Cloud Engineers are respected and viewed in a very positive light by many - including C-suite managers and business owners. Demand is already high for candidates with the right level of skills and experience but is still almost guaranteed to rise in the future as more obsolete business practices continue to be phased out in favour of cloud equivalents. With cloud computing cementing itself as an integral part of modern day life, Cloud Engineers ensure longevity and a bright future ahead of them.

Salary and remuneration - How much does a Cloud Engineer make?

As befits such an in-demand role, salaries and benefits packages for experienced Cloud Engineers are on the high side. In a relatively competitive space, those with specialised knowledge in areas of high demand will find themselves being very fairly compensated. Additionally, many Cloud Engineer jobs come with a significant amount of responsibility, as transitioning to or managing new cloud-based services can involve lots of confidential data, core business operations, and more. 

Cloud Engineer Job Offers