Database administrators install, configure, and maintain an organization's databases. They use computer software to store, organize, and protect data, including financial and shipping records. Administrators, sometimes called DBAs, work with management to determine the organization's data needs and upgrade its technical infrastructure. They also give access to a company's data analysts, who use the stored information to help management improve the organization's operational efficiency. Below you can see a list of common database administration tasks provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS):
- Create and administer databases.
- Ensure efficient database performance.
- Test modifications and upgrades to database structure.
- Backup and restore data.
Employment of database administrators is expected to increase 31% from 2010 to 2020, which is much faster than average for all occupations, according to the BLS. This occupation will see growth due to the increasing prevalence of data collection by businesses and the transition to electronic medical records in the healthcare industry. As such, database administrators are in high demand and some companies have difficulty finding qualified candidates, according to the BLS.
Job Growth for
- Annual Pay National Average
- Hourly Pay National Average
|District of Columbia||1,050||$82,460||$40|
Becoming a Database Administrator
You need to have a bachelor's degree in computer science, database administration, or a related subject to qualify for database administration jobs. However, some employers may prefer candidates who have a Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a minor in information systems, according to the BLS. Those vying for database administration careers typically need one to five years of experience before they can enter this profession. As such, they may work as financial, market research, or operations research analysts before becoming database administrators. The experience gives them time to specialize in a particular software used in creating databases.
- Web Development
- Database Performance and Tuning
- Database Management and File Structure
There are no certification or continuing education requirements for careers in database administration. However, certification is still useful for administrators because it demonstrates that they have a proficiency in a certain area. For example, Microsoft's Certified Database Administrator (MCDBA) credential shows that an administrator can design, implement, and manage an SQL Server 200 database. Oracle, a multinational information technology company, offers a considerable number of certification programs as well. Certification may not be required by employers but then can improve a candidate's chances of being hired.