The American Marketing Association defines marketing as "the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large."
Essentially, marketers take complex topics and issues and distill them down into digestible sound bites so they can be absorbed and acted upon by others on behalf of their constituents. We live in an increasingly complex world, so this task can seem daunting. Changes in the global economic, regulatory, societal, natural and philosophical realities seem to be increasing in pace and intensity.
Solutions architects take the same approach as a marketer – synthesizing complex, technical information into something that’s easily understood and actionable.
You are most likely familiar with terms like the cloud, hyperscale, the edge, Internet of Things (IoT), global connectivity, on-demand, autonomous, AI, learning, smart X, 5G, WiFi6, LANs RANs WANs MANs, and a host of other acronyms or expressions. You can talk to five different experts and get five different reasons for why these terms are important and what they really mean to your business.
The reality is life is complex. Technologies are complex. Business requirements are complex. The requirements, demands, constraints and possibilities can vary for each of those five experts or panelists. What is common is that technology, its impacts and its abilities are present locally, globally and terrestrially where we live, work and play.
Instead of getting hung up on these terms, let’s talk about some of the technology trends that are impacting our lives at work, home and abroad. We’re seeing:
• More devices connected than ever before - by 2025, there will likely be more than 27 billion IoT connections.
• Technology accessibility where we never have.
• The promise, possibility, potential, opportunity and threat of virtually anything being able to talk to virtually anything.
• Technology changes rapidly with product and application lifecycles shrinking even as they become more ubiquitous.
You need the right expertise to help you make the right decisions – to make money, save money or eliminate risk. With the increasing complexity in the world and the technologies surrounding all the decision-making, ensuring your technologies are built on sound foundations so they can be of service to you for as long as possible sounds like a worthwhile investment. That’s where a solution architect comes in. They can:
• Discuss the benefits of fault-managed power and how it’s providing more options for safely powering our networked devices.
• Explain how things like modular construction are changing the face of the built world to maximize efficiency and bring expertise where none may have been possible in the field.
• Describe the increasing number of use cases for fiber, how it’s expanding beyond its ocean connecting roots to bring high availability resiliency and speed to millions of devices.
Ultimately, as a solutions architect, we get into your space, understand your needs and make sure we are building technology infrastructures to support those needs. To illustrate, that might mean:
• For a hospital CTO, determining how infrastructure helps maximize clinical care and positive outcomes.
• For an airport administrator, understanding how a sound infrastructure can help move people, bags and aircrafts as quickly and safely as possible.
• For the dean of a university, knowing how technologies can help attract the best students and retain the best faculty.
So, how are solutions architects taking a page from the marketer’s playbook?
Because they are tasked with simplifying a message to make it digestible. But in an increasingly complex world, especially technologically, how do we do that? As solutions architects, we help organizations harness the power of technology to achieve their goals. We take that complex world and distill it not for a simple message that can be digested, but rather for an executable design or solution optimized to meet your needs. Often those solutions seem as complex as the world we live in. With the right people on your team, you can make the right decisions to ensure your continued success in an uncertain world.