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Oracle Administrator: Salary and Career Facts

Explore the career requirements for Oracle administrators. Get the facts about education requirements, certification, job duties, and salary information to determine if this is the right career for you.

What is an Oracle Administrator?

Oracle database administrators (DBAs) install, configure and maintain databases and database servers. It is important that these professionals ensure the security of databases and conduct periodic backups of the data. It is also part of their job to make sure that databases meet the needs of the users and operate efficiently. At times this may include merging data bases and updating user permissions.

The following chart gives you an overview about entering this field.

Degree Required Bachelor's degree
Certification Various proficiency levels available through Oracle
Education Field of Study Database architecture, Structured Query Language, database design, data warehousing, application development
Job Duties Installing and monitoring databases and database servers, managing user accounts, troubleshooting issues, optimizing database and application performance
Job Outlook (208-2028) 9% (for all database administrators)*
Median Salary (2018) $90,070 (for database administrators)* $93,919 (for Oracle database administrators, November 2019)**

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **PayScale.com

What Does an Oracle Administrator Do?

Your responsibilities as an Oracle administrator would generally include installing, configuring, monitoring, upgrading, backing up and restoring databases and database servers. Within those areas, you'll need to manage user accounts, resource access and disaster recovery planning. Daily tasks include optimizing database and application performance, troubleshooting problems and disruptions, coordinating security with network administrators and enforcing compliance.

What Educational Programs Are Available?

Schools across the United States host certificate programs that provide training in the administration of Oracle databases. Most programs expect that you have some database experience, though it doesn't necessarily have to be with the Oracle platform. Courses cover topics in Oracle database architecture, Structured Query Language, database design, data warehousing and application development. You'll learn resource allocation, as well as how to utilize tables, log files, clusters and indexes within the Oracle database structure.

What Are the Certification Options?

Oracle offers separate database administrator (DBA) certifications for all versions of its database products. Depending on your level of experience with Oracle database administration, you can choose from among four proficiency levels - Associate, Professional, Master and Expert. Some versions also allow you to specialize in operating system environments, applications or database performance. Each credential requires you to pass at least one exam for your specialization, mastery level and version choice.

Where Could I Work?

Prominent employers for Oracle database administrators include information technology service providers, software developers, financial institutions, government agencies and telecommunications companies. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 120,000 database administrators were employed in the U.S. in 2014, and more than 13,400 additional positions were expected by 2024 (www.bls.gov).

What Salary Could I Earn?

As of November 2019, Payscale.com reported Oracle database administrators earned a median salary of $93,919 per year. However, the median wages reported by those with 0-5 years of experience was $74,604, increasing to $90,921 with 5-10 years in the field and jumping to six figures from 10-20 years.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

Information technology (IT) managers may work with database administrators, as it is their job to coordinate all the IT activities of a company. Using their knowledge of the company's IT needs, they set IT goals and implement systems that will allow a company to meet those goals. These professionals need to have a bachelor's degree in either a computer or IT related field. Computer network architects design and build the networks databases are stored on. These professionals may be hired to create a whole new local or wide area networks, or install new components that would improve the efficiency of a current network. These professionals also have a bachelor's degree in a computer related field.