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How to get a sql developer job

Dear all,

I am very new to this forum. I am interested in sql server developing side like stored procedure, trigger, function,views. I have one year experience in this field. I want to join in this field as a full time job. Any suggestion will be welcomed....
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asked Jan 04, 2012 at 05:02 AM in Default

lilima gravatar image

lilima
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Thanks a lot to all of you who have answered my question. I am really grateful to you all. Thanks....
Jan 11, 2012 at 12:19 AM lilima
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3 answers: sort voted first

Best thing you can do is build stuff. Find volunteer organizations local to you that need some data management and then build things for them. With only one year in, your skills and knowledge are, at best, entry level, but might not even be that. There are few, if any, places that will take on a completely unskilled developer and train them up. So, you need to develop skills. Read lots of books and blogs and try stuff out. Get a copy of SQL Server Developer's Edition ($50) and do things with it, anything, everything.

A couple of other resources worth picking up, Brad McGehee's book on being an exceptional DBA and Tom LaRock's book on [getting a DBA job][2]. I know you mean database developer, but the dividing line is pretty thin, so learning this stuff won't hurt at all.

[2]: http://www.amazon.com/DBA-Survivor-Become-Rock-ebook/dp/B003VPWXSI/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1325690873&sr=8-2
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answered Jan 04, 2012 at 07:28 AM

Grant Fritchey gravatar image

Grant Fritchey ♦♦
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I have to very respectfully disagree with Grant here. Grant clearly has enormous experience, so it could be something of a regional issue, but what he is describing about the job market definitely does not fit my experience.

I have been on both sides of the issue now, and I was both hired by a company as a SQL Developer when I had no work experience in SQL (the fact I had certifications and that I did well on the skills exam they gave me helped) and I have hired people with no experience with the intention of training them up. The caveat though is that if you are being hired as someone they plan to train, you can expect to start at an entry level (or lower) salary and you must be prepared to show that you are willing to learn aggressively.

I also have to disagree that someone with only a year is at best entry level. People learn at different rates depending on all kinds of factors, but one if them is willingness to put in the effort to learn. I knew one developer that after ten years could still be described as entry level. She was not lazy and was a good employee, but she didn't study outside of the office and didn't seek out the most challenging tasks around the office. So, she stagnated and maintained a stead day job doing light maintenance work and making CRUD procedures.

On the other hand, some people learn much faster. I may risk sounding arrogant here, but I think I went past the entry level point in under a year. I transitioned out of the army and decided to go into SQL Development largely on the recommendation of a good friend of mine. I studied with him and on my own for about 2 months before getting my first job in SQL. I had done some programming before, but it was mostly small things in college before going into the Army. I was hired as an entry level programmer at a lower salary than I had in the Army with the understanding that I needed training. Over my first year, I looked for the hardest challenges they would give me around the office, read about SQL and later started writing about SQL outside of the office, and learned a lot from both the older developers in my office and from my mentor that got me into SQL in the first place. I was promoted to Sr. Developer before that year was out and promoted to DBA before my second year with that company was over. I was not then and still do not claim to be a master by any stretch, I still stand impressed when I look at the things people like Grant Fritchey, Jeff Moden, and Itzik Ben Gan achieve with SQL. But I think I can say without too much arrogance I was well past entry level before that year was over and I am hardly unique.

So, as for practical advice, I agree with Grant that you should get a copy of the Developer's Edition (SQL Server Express will work temporarily if you are extremely short on money) and build things every chance you get. Also, read all you can, just as he said.

But I would also suggest writing. Writing helps you solidify things in your own mind, and once you get good, publishing can help the wider community. I published my first article on SQL Server with SQLServerCentral.com before I had a full year of experience. Looking back, I think both writing style and technical content could have been improved, but writing it helped cement it in my mind and the comments say it helped at least a couple of people along the way.

Clearly, if you want the job, you should look for them and apply for them, but don't forget to network. People in the local SQL Server Users group probably know about local job openings.

Now I'll make two suggestions I know will be controversial, but I think they helped me. Frist, if you want to be a SQL Server Developer, you should learn at least the basics of an Object Oriented Language (C# is a good choice, though I mostly use [Python][2] myself). SQL Server is a domain specfic language, so you may occassionally need to step outside SQL to get things done. Even if you never develop anything outside of SQL, it will help you to have some idea how the application developers you are working with will be using the back-end that you are developing and maintaining.

Second, I recomend certifications. I know many people don't, and again this may be a regional thing, but when I was looking for my first SQL Job two of three offers I received openly mentioned the certifications as something they found to be positive. When I sat on the other side and was sorting through resumes, I considered them. I would never give someone a job because of a certification, but they could get a borderline resume moved into the interview pile. A certification probably means nothing on the resume of someone with 10 years experience as a DBA, but for someone looking for that first or second SQL job it can be helpful at least for some companies.

And finally, best of luck and welcome to the community.

[2]: http://www.simple-talk.com/sql/database-administration/python-for-the-sql-server-dba/
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answered Jan 04, 2012 at 10:12 AM

TimothyAWiseman gravatar image

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Excellent answer. Maybe I'm an old fart, but I still think a year in you're entry level. You can be entry level and great, entry level and mediocre, entry level and crappy, but with one year of experience, you're entry level.

Excellent advice on learning C# (or some other language). Wish I'd thought of it. I came into DBA work by way of development, so I'm a fan of having that experience under your belt.

I also like the idea of trying your hand at writing articles. For that matter, try presenting too. Learn one small topic well and take it to your local user group and present. It's a great way to learn.

As to lumping me in with Jeff & Itzik, please don't. I stand in awe of those guys. My TSQL skills are mediocre. I've just learned the platform well from years & years of working on it.

Great answer, +1 (just don't agree with the entry level bit).
Jan 04, 2012 at 10:23 AM Grant Fritchey ♦♦
Thanks for the comments. I appreciate your humility, but I'll say you have impressed me many times with answers here and articles elsewhere. As for the entry level bit, I respect your opinion, but I'm going to have to maintain my disagreement. People vary so widely in how fast they learn and how motivated they are to learn that I think years of experience is only loosely correlated with actual skill.
Jan 04, 2012 at 11:43 AM TimothyAWiseman
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Back in 1993 I got my first database job when I was 20 years old without any database experience at all, but I am a fast learner, have a burning interest, natural skills and the will to succeed and my employer realized that during a practice. The salary wasn't that good, but One and a half year later I started my own company together with a collegue,and worked as a consultant. 5 years later I sold my share, which was about 5% of the company for a lot of money and the investment back in 1993 was a good investment. Today I still work as a SQL server consultant,I have worked with some of the largest databases in Sweden, I teach other people, I am well paid and I hire people with 15 years of experience of SQL server, but people like @Grant, @Matt whittfield, Itzik, continue to impress me and shows me that I still have more to learn and I still want to learn.

What Is my point with this answer? Well, the most obvious is that life is a learning process. The second point is that anyone can succeed if they really want to (read The Secret, I have lived by The secret without knowing). You have to crawl before you walk and run, and the first step is always the hardest. Getting hired is all about getting someone to believe in you, but no one believ in you, unless you believe in yourself. Getting a certification my show to yourself that you know some basic stuff. (I didn't have time to take a certification in 18 years, but now I have two and aiming for a master certification, just for fun). Where would I have been if no one believed in me?

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answered Jan 04, 2012 at 11:11 PM

Håkan Winther gravatar image

Håkan Winther
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asked: Jan 04, 2012 at 05:02 AM

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Last Updated: Jan 04, 2012 at 06:41 AM