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How many chances will I get to be hired as a Java Architect without previous exp?

Sunny Dai
Greenhorn

Joined: Sep 29, 2003
Posts: 7
I just started looking for a Sr. Java Developer/Software Engineer position (which is clearly stated as my objective on my resume) a few days ago. I selected several target companies to send my resume, and meanwhile posted my resume on the Internet too. Until now I already got 7 inquiry emails from different recruiters who found my resume on the Internet. The things that amazed me is 5 out of 7 emails were asking whether I was interested in a Java Architect position, and a phone interview will be conducted next week.
I don't understand why this has happened. Am I overqualified as a Sr. Java Developer? or is the market desperate of finding qualified Java Architects? How many chances will I get to be hired as a Java Architect without previous architect experience? What questions will usually be asked for the Java Architect position?
Thanks in advance!
Chad McGowan
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 10, 2001
Posts: 265
Chances are, these recruiters are all trying to fill the same position.
Just because a recruiter thinks that you may be qualified doesn't mean that the hiring company will concur. However, it never hurts to interview and find out yourself, as long as you feel somewhat confident that you have what it takes.
Mark Herschberg
Sheriff

Joined: Dec 04, 2000
Posts: 6037
Do you have no experience at all, or no experience as an architect?
The latter isn't a problem. Anyone who takes on a new role does so without experience in that role. Without any experience, companies that hire you would be somewhat foolish (nothing personal, but an architect without experience is a bad idea).
That said, my current company hired a junior taking a year off from MIT as their architect, so it does happen. Of course, this is why they needed to bring me in to help them. :-)
--Mark
Matt Cao
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 03, 2003
Posts: 715
Hi,
What recruiter said may not exactly what the company see. But by all means, try it. You will find out whether you are a good fit or not. If the company like your chemistry, they will give you time by offering you a little lower position until they see you ready/you prove to them that you are ready.
Regards,
MCao
Thomas Eric
Greenhorn

Joined: Feb 18, 2004
Posts: 8
Without any experience, companies that hire you would be somewhat foolish (nothing personal, but an architect without experience is a bad idea).

Without these foolish companies, there is little chance to find an architect with experience!
Experience is unquestionably very important, but it's not everything. A bad wine will be bad after ten years. If you have a good brain, a good communication skill and team spirit, you are good for it. Unfortunately, it seems this point of view is not widely shared.
Don Stadler
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 10, 2004
Posts: 451
The qualifications for 'architect' are by far the most variable of any title in the industry. It can mean anything from a whiteboard/Powerpoint jockey to a very good senior developer.
On my last project the architects didn't get into the nitty-gritty of what talked to what and how, which seems to me an essential part of architecture. That was left to the senior developers. To be honest I'm not sure what the architects did. Perhaps they identified which standards to use or something. There were 8 or 10 of them and they didn't talk to us mere mortals much.
I've done architecture & I'm sure most senior designers worth their salt have done so also. I've never held the title.
[ February 20, 2004: Message edited by: Don Stadler ]
Mark Herschberg
Sheriff

Joined: Dec 04, 2000
Posts: 6037
Originally posted by Thomas Eric:

Without any experience, companies that hire you would be somewhat foolish (nothing personal, but an architect without experience is a bad idea).
Without these foolish companies, there is little chance to find an architect with experience!


I utterly disagree. Smart companies hire experienced senior developers to be architects. On average, most people with even a few years work experience would be better architects than someone with no experience whatsoever. Unless you've seen good designs and bad (which aren't taught in college classes), you're likely to make mistakes.
--Mark
Don Stadler
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 10, 2004
Posts: 451
Originally posted by Thomas Eric:

Without these foolish companies, there is little chance to find an architect with experience!
Experience is unquestionably very important, but it's not everything. A bad wine will be bad after ten years. If you have a good brain, a good communication skill and team spirit, you are good for it. Unfortunately, it seems this point of view is not widely shared.

Originally posted by Mark Herschberg:


I utterly disagree. Smart companies hire experienced senior developers to be architects. On average, most people with even a few years work experience would be better architects than someone with no experience whatsoever. Unless you've seen good designs and bad (which aren't taught in college classes), you're likely to make mistakes.
--Mark

You fellows are talking about different kinds of experience, Mark. Tom is referring to lack of experience as an architect while you mean that any architect should have solid years of experience as an implementor and a designer beforehand. In Tom's view that means no experience as an architect the first time.
You are absolutely correct, BTW. Any good senior designer with the ability to step up their viewpoint to a systemwide level will make a better architect than 80% of the people holding the title today. Indeed the effective architecture on almost every project I've ever seen is accomplished at this level.
Thomas Eric
Greenhorn

Joined: Feb 18, 2004
Posts: 8
When I said architect without experience, I meant an architect without prevously working as an architect.
However, as there are many factors which have to be taken into account for a project to succeed, experience itself should not be decisive. But this is only my personal opinion.
 
It is sorta covered in the JavaRanch Style Guide.
 
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