Database Processes Engineer Careers: Job Description & Salary

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What are the pros and cons of a database processes engineer career? Get real job duties, career outlook and salary info to see if becoming a database processes engineer is right for you.
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Pros and Cons of a Database Processes Engineer Career

A database processes engineer is a systems software developer who designs databases in order to keep a computer or a system of computers operating smoothly. Read the pros and cons of becoming a database processes engineer to decide if it's right for you.

Pros of Being a Database Processes Engineer
Significantly above-average wages (annual median salary was about $102,880 in 2014)*
Job growth is expected to be much faster-than-average (20% from 2012-2022)*
Educational requirement is usually only a bachelor's degree*
Telecommuting and work-from-home options may be available*

Cons of Being a Database Processes Engineer
Working more than 40 hours per week is common*
Throughout your career, continuing education is needed for job stability *
Outsourcing to foreign countries may impact job opportunities*
Employers frequently prefer years of industry-specific work experience**

Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **Job Postings from 2012

Career Information

Job Description and Duties

As a database processes engineer, you would have various technical and administrative duties. You may conduct needs assessments for your employer or client to determine the database configurations and structural designs that would best address their system needs and goals. Creating management reports and other documents based on your analysis may also be a part of your responsibilities.

You may design new database programs and related components, as well as reconfigure or customize existing ones. Depending on your employer, you may also play a role in installing and maintaining these databases. You may either provide staff supervision for installations and maintenance, or conduct them yourself.

Salary and Job Outlook Info

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that the 2014 annual median salary for system software developers was approximately $102,880. That same year, the BLS reported that the lowest ten percent of these professionals earned less than about $63,250 annually, while the top ten percent earned more than about $154,800 annually. According to the BLS, systems software developers were expected to see a 20% increase in employment rates from 2012-2022, which is much faster than the national average. Growth is expected to be driven by increased availability and lowered costs of computer software.

What Are the Requirements?

Education

A bachelor's degree is the most common educational requirement for software developers. Degree programs in computer science, technology engineering, software engineering, information technology and related disciplines are consistent with your field. The BLS reports that, regardless of your specific degree program, taking a significant amount of coursework in software development and computer programming is typically crucial for aspiring software developers.

Useful Skills

Being able to write code and staying informed of new software technology are crucial skills that software developers must have. In addition, they should be analytical and detail-oriented, with an ability to communicate with both with project teammates and customers. They should also possess both technical skills and creativity in order to solve a variety of software problems.

Job Postings from Real Employers

You may work for a variety of different employers, including government agencies, private businesses and non-profit organizations. In addition to having a degree, employers are also looking for candidates with hands-on, professional experience with servers and related components. Here are just a few of the job listings for your profession that were posted May 2012:

  • A healthcare company in Florida wants to hire a SQL database developer. You must have solid experience with database design and normalization. In-depth knowledge of T-SQL (including complex SQL queries) is also required. Experience with Microsoft Access Databases is preferred.
  • An insurance fraud team in California is looking for a principal database engineer who would develop and design database programs. A bachelor's degree in computer science or a related field is required, along with at least 12 years of experience working as a database engineer. Eight years of that experience were required to be in high-performance commercial software.
  • An Internet sales corporation in Maryland would like to hire a database engineer with a bachelor's degree; however, a master's degree in computer science is preferred. Years of experience in subjects like database development, writing code and designing tables were required.

How to Stand Out in this Field

Some employers may prefer that you have a master's degree in addition to sufficient work experience with software programs and databases. A master's degree in a subject like computer science or software engineering could be beneficial to you. As part of your studies, the BLS recommends that you focus on secondary subjects, such as programming and computer languages, in order to broaden your understanding of the field as a whole.

Alternative Career Paths

Database Administrator

If you would like to work with databases, but you aren't interested in design, then you may want to consider becoming a database administrator. Your primary role would be to manage and maintain the daily operations of databases. The 2011 annual median salary for database administrators was approximately $75,000, according to the BLS. The BLS also stated that these professionals were expected to see a 31% employment increase from 2010-2020.

Applications Software Developer

If you would like to develop software, but don't want to be limited to database designs, then becoming an applications software developer may be an option to look at. You would be a software developer that creates applications used by the general public, such as word processors or video games. While you may have more diverse work projects, the BLS reports that the 2011 annual median salary for applications software developers was about $89,000.

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Featured Schools

Full Sail University

  • BS - Cloud Technologies (Campus)

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Georgetown University

  • Masters of Professional Studies in Technology Management

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Kaplan University

  • Bachelor of Science in Information Technology
  • AASBA in Information Processing
  • Associate: Information Technology

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Northcentral University

  • PhD-TIM - Data Science
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Data Science
  • MSTIM - Data Science
  • Master of Science in Data Science

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Virginia College

  • Diploma Program - Network Technician

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Regent University

  • Bachelor of Arts in Leadership Studies - Information Technology
  • Bachelor of Science in Computer Science

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Brightwood College

  • Computer Support Technician

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Penn Foster

  • Career Diploma - PC Maintenance and Repair

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