Re: But how can you become an effective Architect
"But how can you become an effective Architect if you haven't first been an Administrator?"
Yes, this is the killer. Entry level positions need to be available in the field. People don't just wake up and become systems architects. It takes a lot of experience, hopefully in diverse environments, to get the exposure you need to make smart choices that aren't just "well, Gartner says these guys are good..."
"And as for Administrator jobs becoming redundant, not while my co-workers refuse to write anything down and hold it in their heads instead."
Totally agree, but I've seen many situations in my career where people didn't document anything for "job security." They've been laid off like anyone else, and it's fallen to the ones left behind to very carefully probe around and solve the puzzle. Terry Childs comes to mind, as does my own personal experience with the "network BOFH" who built a huge enterprise network by himself and failed to document anything. Getting rid of him meant a huge spend on network consultants, but he was gotten rid of all the same and the company paid the fees to get their network back.