Database Administrator


    A database administrator (DBA) is responsible for the performance, integrity and security of a database. They will also be involved in the planning and development of the database, as well as troubleshooting any issues on behalf of the users.

    DBA roles vary depending on the type of database, the processes they administer and the capabilities of the database management system (DBMS) in use.


    Employers of Database Administrators

    • Financial organizations
    • IT companies
    • Management consultancy firms
    • Software companies
    • Universities and academic institutions
    • Hospitals
    • Local authorities
    • Any organization that stores large amounts of information and data



    • establishing the needs of users and monitoring user access and security;
    • monitoring performance and managing parameters to provide fast responses to front-end users;
    • mapping out the conceptual design for a planned database;
    • considering both back-end organization of data and front-end accessibility for end-users;
    • refining the logical design so that it can be translated into a specific data model;
    • further refining the physical design to meet system storage requirements;
    • installing and testing new versions of the DBMS;
    • maintaining data standards, including adherence to the Data Protection Act;
    • writing database documentation, including data standards, procedures and definitions for the data dictionary (metadata);
    • controlling access permissions and privileges;
    • developing, managing and testing back-up and recovery plans;
    • ensuring that storage and archiving procedures are functioning correctly;
    • capacity planning;
    • working closely with IT project managers, database programmers and multimedia programmers;
    • communicating regularly with technical, applications and operational staff to ensure database integrity and security;
    • commissioning and installing new applications and customizing existing applications in order to make them fit for purpose.



    You can enter this career with a degree in any subject but the following may be particularly useful:

    • computer science;
    • computer software/computer systems engineering;
    • electronics;
    • information technology;
    • mathematics;
    • operational research.



    • communication, teamwork and negotiation skills;
    • problem-solving and good analytical skills;
    • familiarity with the main data manipulation languages and the principles of database design;
    • flexibility and adaptability;
    • good organizational skills;
    • the skill to work to tight deadlines under pressure;
    • the ability to create and maintain strong working relationships with colleagues and customers;
    • business awareness and understanding of business requirements of IT;
    • a willingness to keep up to date with developments in new technology;
    • a commitment to continuing professional development (CPD);
    • an understanding of information legislation.