DBA Vs Developer

  • Hello Members,

    This is my first post on sqlteam forum. I have been working as BI developer using Crystal reports. I have a little bit of experience in SSRS and SSIS. I have been exposed to sql language (writing queries from simple to complex queries). I want to pursue my career using Microsoft. I am not sure whether to opt for sql developer or dba course. Which has more growth and more opportunities in future ?

    any inputs are greatly appreciated.

    Thanks in advance!

  • My opinion is that first concentrate on the development side rather than DBA.

    That will help you to learn a lot..then you can go the admin part...

    Try a MS certification on SQL server 2008.

  • Thanks a lot George for your valuable input.

  • Do you have any experience on the DBA side?

    Which do you prefer?

    If no experience, its normally relatively difficult to get your first full DBA position. Most companies only want to hand their PROD environments over to an experienced DBA.

    The MS certification is OK, but companies will still want the experience first, qualification second. I would look at a company that can offer you growth in the position for DEV to say DEV Admin (and DEV) and then eventually onto PROD.

    Besides SQL Developers get paid well as well 😉

    I started out doing development, then moved up to DEV and TEST DBA under a good DBA. Then eventually onto PROD DBA. Now I am a hybrid of both... with a fair bit of infrastructure knowledge 😀

  • Graham-

    Thanks a lot for taking your time to provide a valuable input. I dont have any experience as DBA and my goal is get into BI and work more on BI (long term goal). Before that i want to get a get good understanding how the sql server works under the hood. For now I have two options to choose to do either dba or developer certification.

  • I don't think you need to be a DBA to be a good developer. I have been developing for 3+ years and certainly don't understand all the minute details under the hood. The 3 first level certs are DBA, Developer, and BI. I earned the Developer and BI cert and don't have any intention of pursuing the DBA. However I think a lot of this is what you preference is. If you really want to work with Microsofts BI stack using SSIS, SSRS, and SSAS I'd say go for it and don't worry about the minute details that DBAs are required to know.

  • Both are good career paths and each has its virtues. It depends on what you want out of your I.T. career, and possibly where "you're at" in life.

    I spent over 20 years in software development. I've written software in 10 languages, designed and architected large real-time systems. About the last 8 years of that time, I began to spend more and more time on database related work.

    To make 20+ years short, the repetitiveness of the software development process began to bore me. At some point, just moving data from point A to point B, and back, with some business rules and algorithms thrown in, became boring. Or, maybe my brain simply matured from being a young brain to being an older brain. I've never met a young DBA but I've met a lot of older ones. I've rarely met an old software developer but I've met many young ones. So, there may be some physiology involved in the choice of professions.

    As time progressed and I grew older, what became of interest to me was relational concepts, as opposed to iterative concepts. I made the transition to DBA at a convenient time in my career, and I seemed to naturally grasp DBA work and issues that maybe 20 years earlier, I might not have been interested in.

    I'm not saying everyone does or should follow my career path and migration, only that it might be a natural progression. My background in software has greatly enhanced my DBA career. I "speak software" when talking to developers. And I'm good at explaining database and database server related concepts to them, although I find very few of them are truly interested. They're interested in software.

    Both career paths are good ones, if you're competent and dedicated. I would recommend picking the one that you are the most interested in right now. It is very likely that if you live long enough, you will have multiple careers as your interests change.


  • I think both have opportunity for growth and that opportunity could change depending on your abilities. Decide what would give you more satisfaction.

    Many times you will find that both avenues are one and the same - depending on the job and location.

    Jason...AKA CirqueDeSQLeil
    I have given a name to my pain...MCM SQL Server, MVP
    Posting Performance Based Questions - Gail Shaw[/url]
    Learn Extended Events

  • i've not been a member of this amazing forum for long, but my story and direction of thought is somewhat similar to yours, working with a very good mentor on development, BI SSIS, then plucked out as a junior DBA working under an excellent mentor

    whatever you choose won't be a wrong choice 😉 and I can see how you can transition from one to the other


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