What Does DBA Stand For?

Well, that depends on who you ask. Traditionally it will means “Database Administrator”, and very few people will argue with that. But where it gets really interesting is if you list out the specific job duties for a DBA. It varies from shop to shop. In some shops, you are more of a developer. In another, you do database design. In another you are doing mostly ETL work. In another, you install, maintain, and backup the instances as your primary duty.

If you really want to know what you do as a DBA, go and ask your boss. At my last company I had (at least) four different bosses in the last 16 months. If I sent them each an email right now to list out what they thought a DBA did for work, I would get back four different answers.

Nobody knows what you do. They only know what you do not do. And they are more likely to remember your failures (real or perceived) than your successes.

It is up to you to educate them.

One Response to “What Does DBA Stand For?”

  1. Glenn Berry Says:

    Nice post, Tom. I always thought DBA stood for Default Blame Acceptor…

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