Database Architect Job Description
Database architects design, develop, and maintain databases and database applications to manage data. IT companies and other businesses hire database architects to work full-time hours, primarily in offices. Database architects work independently in a fast-paced, collaborative team environment with other IT professionals, and report directly to the IT manager. Database architects sometimes travel to other businesses and company branches to set up, maintain, and manage databases.
Database Architect Duties and Responsibilities
Daily job duties for database architects vary based on the amount of data they manage and the number of other IT professionals they regularly work with. These core tasks, however, are common despite those variables:
Create and Maintain Databases
Database architects design new databases to securely store data, then maintain those databases to ensure that data remains safe and accessible. This also includes testing all database functions and features to ensure consistent and efficient operations.
Assess Data Needs
Database architects review a company’s database needs and develop plans and programs to manage these issues.
Evaluate Database Components
Database architects evaluate software, hardware, and computer networks as they relate to the database to check for bugs and other issues that may affect functionality.
Perform Data Cleanup
Database architects clean up databases by removing excess and old data that no longer needs to be stored.
Design Database Applications
Database architects create new database applications.
Back Up Data
Database architects regularly back up data to prevent data loss.
Collaborate with Staff
Database architects collaborate with system architects, information technologists, and other staff members regarding data storage practices, network operation, and other computer issues.
Database Architect Skills and Qualifications
Database architects need excellent computer skills and a high degree of programming knowledge to create and maintain databases and manage data. Employers look for candidates who display the following essential skills:
- Programming – database architects use multiple programming languages to design database applications, which requires excellent computer programming skills
- Computer skills – database architects use computer skills to work with multiple software programs, computer networks, and applications
- Analytical thinking – database architects use analytical skills to evaluate databases and database components
- Attention to detail – database architects study and examine databases for security, data flow, and functionality, which requires good attention to detail
- Communication skills – database architects collaborate frequently with other members of the IT staff, which requires good verbal communication skills
Database Architect Education and Training
Employers look for database architects who have a bachelor’s degree in information technology, engineering, computer science, or a similar field. Candidates who have a master’s degree in one of these disciplines are even more desirable to employers, though this is not usually a requirement of employment.
Little on-the-job training is provided to database architects, who already have the skills and knowledge needed to perform the job’s day-to-day functions. However, many employers provide database architects with a brief orientation period during which they become familiar with the company’s data needs and existing database functions. This orientation period varies by company but typically lasts no longer than a few weeks.
Database Architect Salary and Outlook
PayScale data shows that database architects earn $112,816 annually. Software developers, who share some core tasks with database architects, earn $103,560 in median annual pay. Information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that jobs in this field will rise 24 percent by 2026, a growth rate that is much faster than the national average.
Database architects receive full benefit packages that include health, dental, vision, and life insurance coverage. Retirement options, paid vacation days, and sick days usually come standard in these packages as well. Some companies provide additional perks to employers, such as free parking, gym memberships, and continuing education reimbursement.
Search for jobs, learn career strategies, and master the tips and tricks needed to succeed as a database architect with these helpful resources:
Association for All IT Architects – visit IASA to search for IT jobs of all types, look for upcoming industry events, and find education programs for database architects and other information technology professionals
Big Data Architect’s Handbook: A Guide to Build Proficiency in Tools and Systems Used by Leading Big Data Experts – learn codes for creating data applications and managing data with this in-depth book written for database architects and data professionals of all types
Data Management Association International – search for events, explore learning resources, and read content for data professionals in all fields at the DAMAI website
Data Modeling Made Simple with Embarcadero ER/Studio Data Architect: Adapting to Agile Data Modeling in a Big Data World – learn more about data modeling concepts and data management practices with this in-depth book written for database architects
CompTIA: Informational Technology Industry & Association – visit the CompTIA website to explore training events, find helpful tools, and discover other resources for database architects and IT professionals
Database Design for Mere Mortals: A Hands-On Guide to Relational Database Design – discover tips and strategies for database design with this book that covers different database types, design terminology, and techniques that database architects need to succeed
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