WHAT DO DATABASE ADMINISTRATORS DO?
Is your computer desktop so clean and organized you could eat off of it? Is it so neat and organized you can make money off of it? You might be ready for a database administrator job. Database administrators (DBAs) are the gatekeepers of electronic data. They use computers and software to keep data safe, organized and properly stored. Database administrators give access to those who are authorized to see the data, and keep out the baddies.
Data can be anything from financial records to marketing information or other personal information. DBAs work with data analysts to ensure they can easily use and access data, work with management to create databases that will be usable and store the information required, figure out user needs and create solutions so that they can access data, create security plans and measures, maintain database integrity and plan for natural disasters and cyber attacks. You can specialize as a System DBA or an Application DBA, or be a DBA generalist.
HOW MUCH DO DATABASE ADMINISTRATORS MAKE?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median hourly income for database administrators was $35.33 per hour in 2010, or $73,490 annually.
WHAT ARE THE EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS?
DBAs come into jobs with at least a bachelor's degree in computer science, information science, or similar fields. Larger firms might want people with master's degrees. On top of this, DBAs must have a practical knowledge of database languages, the most common of which is SQL.
Many DBAs start as data analysts or developers for companies, and gain years of experience before becoming administrators.
Certification is available.
JOB SKILLS AND REQUIREMENTS
- Analytical Skills: DBAs monitor a lot of information and need to be able to think of solutions as problems arise.
- Communication Skills: DBAs are part of a team, working with other DBAs, data analysts and management and need to be effective communicators.
- Attention to Detail: Databases are complex, and a minute error can cause huge problems.
- Logical Thinking: DBAs take code and data and turn it into logical patterns, so that it can be analyzed.
- Problem-Solving Skills: As problems come up, DBAs must come up with solutions quickly.
THE FUTURE OF DATABASE ADMINISTRATORS
According to the BLS, DBA jobs will grow at a much more rapid pace than the average job over the next few years. More and more companies are collecting and using data, and this creates more need for administrators.