6 Cloud Computing Roles (+ Tips to Get Started)

Written by Coursera Staff • Updated on

Interested in a cloud computing career? Take a look at these top cloud computing roles and what you need to know to land a job.

[Featured Image] A woman works on a laptop computer in a server room.

Organizations use cloud computing to facilitate easier access to applications, networks, and data over cloud servers rather than clunky equipment and drives. It’s a field that is most familiar to IT and technical support professionals who already know how to work with these tools and systems. 

Cloud computing jobs are alluring, thanks to high pay and high demand, but the job market is becoming more and more competitive. Below is a list of six common cloud computing jobs to consider if you’re interested in this discipline. We also provide learning resources if you decide that cloud computing is the right path for you.

What is cloud computing?

Cloud computing is the process of accessing applications, networks, analytics, data, and intelligence over the internet instead of through physical servers. This technology allows companies to scale and innovate more efficiently and flexibly. 

Big names such as Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google Cloud Platform (GCP), and Microsoft Azure deliver cloud service platforms to millions of customers.

6 cloud computing roles to know

These cloud computing jobs are most common, though job titles may vary from company to company. 

*All salary data is sourced from Glassdoor as of September 2023.

1. Cloud security analyst

Cloud security analysts help companies develop and build cloud security architectures and solutions, making sure the companies can operate in a safe, secure environment. They monitor, research, and analyze security risks to mitigate threats and security attacks that may occur to or within the cloud. 

  • Average annual salary: $91,868 [1]

  • Educational requirements: At least a bachelor’s degree in cybersecurity, computer science, IT, or a related field.

Read more: How to Become an Information Security Analyst: Salary, Skills, and More

2. Cloud engineer

Cloud engineers build and architect systems on the cloud service provider. They deliver systems design, product assistance, and education on best practices in cloud computing. A cloud engineer might help an organization migrate to the cloud or configure networking services.

  • Average annual salary: $114,562 [2]

  • Educational requirements: Typically, a bachelor’s degree in computer science, engineering, or a related field. Some companies may prefer a master's degree.

Read more: What Is a Cloud Engineer? Building and Maintaining the Cloud

Network vs. software engineer

The difference between network engineers and software engineers is the type of technology they work on. Network engineers build and maintain networks, while software engineers write code and build software for applications and programs.


3. Cloud architect

Cloud architects design, develop, and support cloud computing solutions. This role is very technical and often focuses on implementing the frameworks for the company's network or security system.

  • Average annual salary: $171,422 [3]

  • Educational requirements: Typically, a bachelor’s degree in computer science, engineering, or a related field. Some prefer a master’s degree, and 3-5 years in network or IT support is preferred.

Read more: How to Become a Cloud Architect: Degrees, Skills, Jobs, Courses

4. Cloud administrator

Cloud administrators maintain the infrastructure and functionality of cloud networks at an organization. They work with the IT department to design and maintain cloud and other operating system infrastructures.

  • Average annual salary: $95,299 [4

  • Educational requirements: A bachelor’s degree in computer science, computer information systems, or a related field, and 3-5 years of work experience in systems administration is preferred.

5. Cloud consultant

Cloud consultants provide guidance to companies who want to transition or adopt more cloud-based tools and technologies. They tend to have broad knowledge of the types of cloud technologies and solutions on the market. The consultants assess a company’s needs and make software suggestions based on the company’s needs, budget, and technical requirements.

  • Average annual salary: $122,082 [5]

  • Educational requirements: Bachelor’s degree in computer science or IT. An MBA is sometimes preferred.

6. System engineer

System engineers manage server backups and recovery and work to monitor and plan for system capacity. They must also adhere to system security standards and regularly perform system upgrades. This role is important for maintaining smooth cloud operations.

  • Average annual salary: $102,143 [6]

  • Educational requirements: At least a bachelor’s degree in computer science, engineering, or a related field. Some prefer a master’s degree and/or 3-5 years in system administration.

Tips for getting started

Interested in a cloud computing role but not sure where to begin? Here are some tips for getting started on this career path.

  • Learn cloud computing skills: You’ll want to learn skills such as programming languages, database management, information security, DevOps, and more. You can take a class on Coursera to develop these cloud computing skills.

  • Make sure cloud computing is right for you: As you gain the skills, education, and experience you need for cloud computing, you may want to talk to cloud professionals to gain a sense of what it’s really like on the job. If you’re unsure of the path you should take given your skill set, find cloud engineers and architects on LinkedIn and ask to set up an informational interview. Find networking events near you to understand what skills are needed in order to land a job at a company you admire.

  • Look into requirements you may need: Find out whether you actually need a degree for the role you want. Sometimes, certifications, taking on projects, and internship experience can help you land a job without a specific bachelor’s degree or any degree at all.

Learn cloud computing today

To get started in a cloud computing role, you’ll need to learn the basics. Enroll in IBM’s Introduction to Cloud Computing for a full overview of the fundamentals, including the characteristics of cloud computing, its history, and different examples of cloud service models and platforms.

Or, You can start preparing for an entry-level cloud computing job today by enrolling in the Microsoft Cloud Support Associate Professional Certificate program. In just two months, you can gain cloud support diagnostic skills and practice using industry-standard tools like Microsoft Azure while earning an employer-recognized certificate from Microsoft.

Article sources


Glassdoor. “How much does a Cloud Security Analyst make?, https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/cloud-security-analyst-salary-SRCH_KO0,22.htm.” Accessed September 28, 2023.

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