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Posted Monday, August 11, 2014 8:04 PM
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Hello SQL families,

What is the maximum one can make as SQL / BI developer? Or How far a Microsoft SQL developer can go?

the More senior you become in other technologies like SAP, Java, even Oracle , you would make more money compared to SQL server developer. I am in my mid 30s and I make 70/hr on W2 contract.

Lets say if the future is bright for SQL and IT in general, How far one can go in SQL in terms of salary or contract work?
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Posted Tuesday, August 12, 2014 12:49 AM


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daniarchitect (8/11/2014)
Hello SQL families,

What is the maximum one can make as SQL / BI developer? Or How far a Microsoft SQL developer can go?

the More senior you become in other technologies like SAP, Java, even Oracle , you would make more money compared to SQL server developer. I am in my mid 30s and I make 70/hr on W2 contract.

Lets say if the future is bright for SQL and IT in general, How far one can go in SQL in terms of salary or contract work?


Depends on a lot of things, like location for example.
It's possible that SAP or Oracle pays better, but then again, you would have to work with SAP or Oracle daily

I'd suggest you to find something that you actually like doing. The money will follow.




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Post #1602154
Posted Tuesday, August 12, 2014 12:56 AM


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SQL Developers can go quite a ways - depending on their skill set. Just the same as with the other technologies - it depends on your ability.



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Post #1602156
Posted Tuesday, August 12, 2014 8:45 AM
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ABLITY, sure it is the factor , I agree 100%, Sometimes you have lets say 10skills you acquired through time , and a particular Client requires may be 2 or 3 of them.

In my previous company I was working as DBA / Developer , SSIS and lots of SSRS.
and the one before all client needed was SSIS and TSQL, my current position requires all TSQL 99% , no tools.

I like what I do , but don't get me wrong I want to make more money while the time is right:) . that's why move to different technology that can pay more with one or two skills in the area ( especially related to ERP, SAP , Oracle Peoplsoft , JAVA...) I thought could be a way to go. that's my observation.

the other thing is the skills that you developed in using tools both on Native sql and Third party tools ( Development or Administration ) could fade away through time.

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Posted Tuesday, August 12, 2014 8:49 AM


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daniarchitect (8/12/2014)

I like what I do , but don't get me wrong I want to make more money while the time is right:) . that's why move to different technology that can pay more with one or two skills in the area ( especially related to ERP, SAP , Oracle Peoplsoft , JAVA...) I thought could be a way to go. that's my observation.



From the postings I have seen and based on your current $70/hr, you are in a better spot. Java developer jobs are looking to max out at $35. ERP and SAP - those are maxing out at $45. Oracle on the other hand depends on which facet and you will only get that kind of money if you already know what you are doing. If you don't have experience and knowledge - they'll toss you to the curb quickly.




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Post #1602322
Posted Tuesday, August 12, 2014 9:19 AM


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First advice, don't chase the money. It will lead you to jobs that you might not otherwise like. The higher you go in salary/rate, the fewer jobs you have, and less choice. I'm not saying you shouldn't want to make money, but be careful about valuing it above everything else. There are tradeoffs.

I do think that Oracle, SAP, etc have paid more for staff in the past. Part of that is the up front cost of those platforms is higher, and thus they tend to expect more. However I see people in SQL Server, especially on contract with lots of skill, making similar money.

It's hard to quote numbers because those vary based on where you are and what company. In Denver, I know DBAs that can make $100-120k/yr if they are really good. Contract could be more, though without benefits. However lots of average DBAs probably make in the $60-80k range. Developers are similar, though more variable, depending on the language/industry you work in.







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Post #1602338
Posted Tuesday, August 12, 2014 11:59 AM
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Steve , thanks for detailed response , that's true money should not be the driver here, but if you like what you are doing and good at it , no harm to go for more. Other comments and yours included conveys a similar message to stay on the same technology. I can see myself more on development side of it , probably extend it to ASPNET / SharePoint area in the near future. for Now the skills I have will keep me going for couple of years:)
Post #1602398
Posted Tuesday, August 12, 2014 12:31 PM


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With 70$/hr you're talking about roughly 140k/yr if you're a full time employee...
If that's your current situation, then the only alternative would be consulting.
Yes, you could make more per hour (significantly more, actually), but you'll also have to consider that you won't get paid 40hrs/wk through the whole year and you'll also have to cover expences you currently might not have.

I'd say, the hourly rate isn't a good figure for comparison...




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Post #1602410
Posted Tuesday, August 12, 2014 1:22 PM
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Do what you like and are good at. BI may pay well, but a good number of people in it don't do very well. Lots of failed projects in this area. Do you want to be highly paid doing something you're not good at or making less at something your very good at?


Post #1602446
Posted Tuesday, August 12, 2014 2:49 PM


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The company I work for has offices in a lot of markets (Seattle, NY, San Fran, Chicago, Houston, L.A., etc...). I have seen compensation fluctuate a lot based on cost of living, and the local job market. The cost of living here in Chicago is high but the pay is a little higher than average. The cost of living is lower in Houston but the pay is equal/higher than Chicago because there is more demand down there. In California (North and South) the cost of living and demand for SQL skills (dev and DBA) are very high and so is the compensation.

All that said, DBA's are hot right now; they seem to get paid more SQL Developers. I have seen DBA jobs in Chicago that pay more than $200K (Hedge fund and trading companies). SQL developers without SSIS skills can make 60-75/hour on W2; if you have solid SSIS skills then add $10-15/hour. In Chicago nearly every "SQL Developer" job involves SSIS and pays more than the jobs that don't.

If you want to keep doing what you love and make more money then going S-Corp (what most people refer to as 1099) is the way to go. You will make a higher hourly rate and there are many companies that will find contract work just as if you were a W2 contractor. In addition to the hourly rate you get awesome tax benefits and keep a higher percentage of your income.

Where can you go with SQL Development skills? I work in BI & Big Data primarily and it's crazy how far SQL skills will get you there. HiveSQL is huge, AWS Redshift (a cloud DW platform that runs PostgreSQL SQL) is hot and there are many other places in the big data world where SQL skills are great to have.


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