Who is a Database Developer ? Job, Salary & More

The discovery of the expansive potential of data in transforming business operations has brought about many changes in the business world. With organizations depending on data to cater to their customers better and increase revenue, the process of data collection, storage, and analysis has undergone significant changes. The importance of powerful databases has also grown significantly. To develop and manage these databases, organizations require database developers.

Database developers play a key role in the data mining operations of an organization. They ensure the databases can store huge quantities of data and also function properly. They also ensure that databases are modified and updated as and when required. As the volume of data collected every day is increasing, so is the demand for database developers, making it a profitable career option.

Curious to know more about the profession? In this blog, we have discussed everything about it, including the roles and responsibilities, skill requirements, career overview, and how to become a database developer. Read on to learn more.

Who is a database developer?

Also called database engineers or database programmers, database developers design, program, construct, and implement databases as per the requirements of an organization. They modify and update old databases according to the needs of the users and the organization. They ensure the efficient functioning of databases, along with eliminating any errors and inefficiencies in coding. 

The profession is often confused with that of a database administrator. Database administrators are typically concerned with the performance, security, and availability of databases. They work in collaboration with database developers due to the similar nature of the job. Therefore, these two professions shouldn’t be confused with each other.

Roles and responsibilities of a database developer

Database developers are primarily responsible for developing new databases and modifying older ones. They do this by researching the needs of the user, designing databases based on the needs, and developing and implementing them. They also develop software capable of interacting with the databases.

A database developer job description often contains these responsibilities.

  • Design efficient databases as per the user’s needs and expectations.
  • Ensure proper storage and processing of data.
  • Structure the data 
  • Define indexing, functions, procedures, and several other parameters
  • Design the user interface 
  • Define data backup guidelines and user guidelines
  • Providing instructions to the users on how to efficiently use the database
  • Determine and evaluate the costs and feasibility of database implementation
  • Create user documentation
  • Maintain databases to ensure maximum performance
  • Plan and design efficient storage strategy and scale business operations
  • Work with the team to detect and diagnose production problems
  • Refine ETL business rules with data analysts
  • Implement new software technology 
  • Do database performance analysis
  • Troubleshoot any issues related to databases 

Skills required to become a database developer

Database developers must have several skills to do their job successfully. From technical to soft skills, these skills help in ensuring they give their best to the job. 

You must have the following database developer skills to succeed in this field.

  • Excellent knowledge of SQL and T-SQL

  • Ability to write complex SQL queries

  • Experience with languages such as Python, PHP, and JavaScript

  • Preparing and structuring data

  • Perform system analysis and cost calculations

  • Knowledge of non-relational databases such as NoSQL

  • Programming languages such as C#, Java, etc

  • Knowledge of .NET application servers and interfaces

  • Analytical skills

  • In-depth knowledge of data structures and physical database designs

  • ETL and BI tools knowledge

  • Troubleshooting any issues that may arise during database development

  • Thorough knowledge of data management

Now, let us discuss some of these skills in detail.

Technical skills

A database developer must have the following technical skills. 

Data modeling knowledge 

Knowledge of data modeling is crucial for all database developers. Data modeling helps create a conceptual model showing the relationship between different data items. It helps database developers understand organizational requirements and translate them into relations. Database developers should also know about running benchmark stacks and validating user requirements. 

Database programming languages

Database developers design, write and modify programs to create and improve their databases. Therefore, they must be skilled in a database programming language, most preferably SQL. SQL is the primary language for manipulating and querying datasets. It is also used to implement the data model. Most major relational databases today support SQL, making it a necessary skill for database developers. 

Knowledge of various database management systems

The database management system (DBMS) is the system that enables the storage, manipulation, retrieval, and updating of data in databases. It helps in maintaining data integrity and allows multi-user access, among its other benefits. As a database developer, you must be able to work with different DBMSs. Some of the most famous DBMSs include Oracle, Microsoft Access, and MySQL. 

Database security

Data security is one of the most crucial aspects of maintaining data. Databases must have stellar security to protect all the sensitive information it holds. While database security does not directly fall under the responsibilities of a database developer, they must have some experience designing secure options. They need to regularly check that data integrity is maintained and that the data is protected from unauthorized access. 


ETL (extract, transform, load) is another essential skill for database developers. ETL allows them to extract data from various databases, transform it, and load it into a data warehouse. A database developer must be skilled in fast ETL processing and know to manage different data sources. 

Design and test plans

Database developers have to regularly perform tests to ensure the database is functioning properly. These tests are also used to solve any user concerns and malfunctions in the database. Therefore, a database developer must be highly skilled in performing unit testing and be familiar with system integration testing. 

Database performance optimization

A database developer should also have the skills to maximize their database’s performance. They should have knowledge of hardware and database configuration, network settings, and rewriting SQL queries. 

Soft skills

Database developers must also have the following soft skills to do their job successfully.


Database developers communicate with many people during their job. They often interact with testers, project managers, and other data professionals, including database administrators, data analysts, data scientists, data warehousing specialists, and data mining specialists. They also interact with other employees to help them understand the working of the database. Therefore, they must have good communication skills to facilitate this communication and work in collaboration. 


Developing a database is a challenging task. It involves understanding the requirements of the users, designing new databases, and maintaining existing ones. Database developers must have excellent problem-solving skills that allow them to find quick solutions to any malfunction or efficiency issues in a database. 


As mentioned in an earlier point, database developers do not work in isolation. They work with other IT professionals to successfully design and develop databases. They also modify databases as per changes in the user requirements. All of this requires them to have good teamwork. They must be able to thrive in a team and achieve their tasks. 

Work under pressure 

Database developers often work with deadlines. They must have the necessary prioritization skills and the ability to meet deadlines. They must be able to work well under pressure and have a keen eye to catch errors and fix them. 

Database developer salary and career overview

According to Glassdoor, database developers make Rs. 6,14,516 on average annually. The salary ranges between Rs. 3,00,000 to Rs. 13,00,000. As your experience grows, your salary will also increase. 

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for database administrators (including database developers and other similar professions) can increase by 9 percent between 2021-31. This growth is faster than average growth. Database developers are in high demand across industries due to the crucial role they play. With the right experience and skills, database developers can also take on roles like senior software engineer, product owner, director of software development, systems manager, and information technology operations manager. 

How to become a database developer?

As long as organizations need data, the demand for database developers will not go down. If you are interested in the field, here are the steps you can follow to become a database developer. 

  • Education

The first step to becoming a database developer is to complete the required education. Most database developers have a bachelor’s degree in computer science, business, information technology, or a related field. You can also go for a master’s degree to increase your prospects. 

  • Develop skills

Education alone is not enough. You must also have skills to match your knowledge. Some of the skills database developers have include ETL, C++, SQL, data modeling, etc. You can develop these skills through special courses or training. 

  • Gain some experience 

A database developer is not an entry-level role. Most organizations ask for some experience while hiring a database developer. You can earn this experience in other roles, such as database administrator, data warehouse analyst, or software programmer. 

  • Get certification

Getting certifications is integral to becoming a database developer. You can take courses that help you learn programming languages, such as SQL. You can also go for vendor-specific certifications by IBM or Microsoft. These certifications will validate your skills and help you stand out from the competition. 

  • Learn roles and responsibilities

You should have good knowledge of the role and responsibilities of a database developer. This can also help you understand the skills you need to develop to be successful in the role.  

  • Prepare your resume 

The last step is to prepare your resume and apply for jobs. Remember to highlight your experience and certifications on it. Your resume will play an integral role in convincing the prospective employer of hiring you. 

Apart from these steps, it is necessary to create a network of industry professionals. Being a part of a professional community, such as IACSIT or CompTIA Professional, will help you stay connected and updated with the latest developments. 

Certifications for database developers

Certifications are incredibly beneficial for database developers. They help you learn new things, develop necessary skills, and show your expertise to potential employers. Here are some of the common certifications you can do to advance your career.

IBM Certified Database Administrator - DB2 12

IBM is a leader in the database market. Its certifications are well-respected in the industry and can give a boost to your career. The IBM Certified Database Administrator - DB2 12 is an entry-level certification that includes topics such as data concurrency, database objects concepts, working with SQL, etc. There are no prerequisites for this certification and you only have to pass one exam to get it. 

The cost per exam is $200. You will need to get 44 out of 63 questions right to clear it successfully. You can use the study material available on the official website to prepare for it. 

Oracle Certified Professional, MySQL 5.7 Database Administrator 

This certification validates your knowledge in installing, optimizing, and monitoring MySQL servers, configuring replication, and validating database backups, among other things. There are no prerequisites, but it is recommended to have some knowledge and hands-on experience in the field. The cost of the exam is $245. The duration will be 120 minutes and you have to do 75 MCQs. 

Microsoft Certifications

Microsoft certifications are role-centric, which makes it easy for professionals to get a certification according to their role. You can do the Microsoft Certified: Azure Data Fundamentals if you are a beginner in the industry. Apart from this, you can also get the Azure Database Administrator Associate, Azure Data Engineer Associate, and Data Analyst Associate certifications. 

Apart from these vendor-specific certifications, you can also do vendor-neutral certifications from the following organizations.

  • ICCP certifications: The Institute for the Certification of Computing Professions offers vendor-neutral certifications, such as Certified Data Professional and Certified Data Scientist. 

  • Enterprise DB certifications: The two main certifications offered by this organization are EDB Certified Associate and EDB Certified Professional. 


Modern businesses thrive on data. And they need database developers to ensure the safe designing and implementation of databases that hold that data. Database developers are a crucial part of the organization. If you plan on entering this lucrative field, follow the steps discussed in this blog. Remember to build a network and get certifications on the way.

Armin Vans
Archer Charles has top education industry knowledge with 4 years of experience. Being a passionate blogger also does blogging on the technology niche.



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