Cloud Solutions for Legacy Systems as a Solutions Architect (Interview)

Solutions Architect
Exponent TeamExponent TeamPublished

Implementing a cloud solution for a company's legacy system can be challenging as a Solutions Architect.

Legacy systems, such as mainframes or older operating systems, are still prevalent in organizations despite attempts to modernize them.

As a solutions architect, your job may involve convincing businesses with legacy systems to migrate to the cloud.

Interviewing for solutions architect roles? Don't miss Exponent's solutions architect interview course.

Sneak Peek: The three most common solutions architect interview questions are:
- Handling a customer objection
- Tell me about a time you made a mistake
- Solving a complex problem for a customer

During this mock interview, a Microsoft solutions architect helps a client migrate from a legacy system to the cloud.

Marcelo (Solutions Architect, Microsoft) discusses upgrading legacy systems to the cloud.

Key Takeaways

  • Identify the client's motivation before presenting any demos
  • Scoping the project beforehand ensures the demo is tailored to the client's specific needs and may reveal requirements the client left out
  • Tailoring the presentation to meet the client's needs minimizes confusion and ensures that the client understands the cloud solution and its benefits
  • Enterprises have unique goals and systems that require more in-depth analysis and customization than off-the-shelf canned solutions can provide

Identify the Client’s Needs and Motivation

Why is the client migrating to the cloud?

The decision to move to the cloud can be motivated by decommissioning a data center, scalability issues, or a desire for greater reliability and availability.

Starting with a scoping call before presenting any demos is crucial to identify the client's motivation.

Scoping ensures that the demo is tailored to the client's specific needs and may reveal requirements the client left out.

When identifying the client's motivation, keep cost ownership, scaling requirements, and talent management in mind.

Customize the Presentation

Strike a balance between providing a general overview and showcasing specific features.

Consider the level of information required or desired by the audience and tailor the presentation accordingly.

For example, an Azure strategy deal may require a more comprehensive overview compared to demonstrating product features.

Tailoring the presentation minimizes confusion and ensures the client understands the cloud solution and its benefits.

How Can the Cloud Help?

Enterprises have unique goals and systems that require more in-depth analysis and customization than off-the-shelf canned solutions can provide.

Aspiring Solutions Architects should have diverse business and technical skills to deliver excellent cloud solutions that meet the client's needs.

A successful cloud implementation requires a thorough understanding of the client's motivation, scoping the project, showcasing only a few specific features, and a deep understanding of the client's needs.

There is a need to balance the information to match the decision maker's level of understanding and ensure that the cloud solution is precisely what the client needs.

More Solutions Architect Interview Questions

Practice more solutions architect interview questions like "How would you help a client migrate to the cloud?"

Tell me about a time when you:

  • Dealt with a customer request that had an objection.
  • Were double-booked for a meeting, and how you resolved it.
  • Resolved a customer pain point with an innovative solution.
  • Declined a customer requirement.

About the Solutions Architect Interview

The solutions architect interview typically has the following stages:

1. Recruiter screen

In this 30-45min interview, your recruiter will ask about your resume, domain knowledge of solutions engineering, and behavioral questions to assess your culture fit.

2. Manager screen

In this interview, you'll discuss your technical skills and domain knowledge and explain how you'd add value to the company.

3. On-site interview

On-site interviews usually last 3-5 hours and consist of several rounds, including a technical concepts interview and a presentation.

The rest of the interviews focus on behavioral skills.

The interview stages can vary across companies, and the role may be called Solutions Engineer, Cloud Architect, or Solutions Consultant. Your recruiter can clarify the growth of the solutions architect role and how your team may look.

Learn everything you need to ace your solutions architect interviews.

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