My most interesting job title was Research Associate. I had that when I worked at a university. My primary role was to be a supporting software engineer for PhD students. Working out the tools to support their research. So the title was quite fitting.
Currently my job title is Systems Architect, and I kind of hate it because it has the word architect. Architects in the software industry, especially larger companies, usually think in boxes and arrows. Creating "solutions" at such a high abstraction layer than no sensible implementation is visible. For this I always explain that I also work out to solution actual implementation levels, and that I'm also part of the team to actually implement it.
I have also had the title Software Engineer. I think this is abused severely. I use the scale of: programmer, software developer, software engineer (, software architect). The engineer term should be reserved for the people who apply the engineering principles. But it is thrown around like free candy, and thereby reduced it to become meaningless.
I had Software Developer, Senior Software Developer and Software Architect as Job titles. In my current job I just have "IT employee". And it is much more relaxing and nearly no headhunters anymore.
Yeah... Not a fan of the whole "boxes and arrows" thing that most holders of the "architect" label seem to be about. Really, those people should be more-honestly titled, "PowerPoint Engineers".
Usually, when someone wants to slap the "architect" label on me, I tend to ask, "can we at least make that 'technical architect'?" I mean, not only do I do detailed designs of things that actually work (and typically write up the implementation plans and other technical artifacts), I have the ability to carry out most of what I do.
Actually in Canada engineer is a reserved title for people that pursued a bachelor degree in an accredited engineering curriculum.
5 years ago Microsoft opened an office in Montreal and started to use "engineer" in their employees job titles. The office regulating the engineering practice received complaints and told them to remove that or be fined for wrongfully using that title.
Even me as an engineering student I must be careful not to use the title, let myself be announced as an engineer, let someone use that title wrongfull or perform any reserved act.
Ah. Yeah. It was freaking Canada that cause us to have to have our titles changed. Hadn't been a problem when our regions were actually constrained t specific sections of the US. However, when they realized "we don't have enough specialized expertise in each region, we need to break them out of their regions", it meant we had to have titles compatible (meaningless enough) to practice in other jurisdictions.
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