Research Summary. Here are some key facts to know if you're looking to hire a database specialists in the United States:

  • The median cost to hire a database specialist is $1,633.
  • It takes between 36 and 42 days to fill the average role in the US.
  • HR departments typically allocate 15% of their budget towards recruitment efforts.
  • Small businesses spend $1,105 per database specialist on training each year, while large companies spend $658.
  • It takes approximately 12 weeks for a new employee to reach full productivity levels.
  • There are a total of 105,568 database specialists in the US, and there are currently 41,500 job openings in this field.
  • Tucson, AZ, has the highest demand for database specialists, with 6 job openings.

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How Much Does it Cost to Hire a Database Specialist

Recruiting database specialists involves both the one-time costs of hiring and the ongoing costs of adding a new employee to your team. Your spending during the hiring process will mostly be on things like promoting the job on job boards, reviewing and interviewing candidates, and onboarding the new hire. Ongoing costs will obviously involve the employee's salary, but also may include things like benefits.

The median annual salary for database specialists is $77,642 in the US. However, the cost of database specialist hiring can vary a lot depending on location. Additionally, hiring a database specialist for contract work or on a per-project basis typically costs between $25 and $53 an hour.

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How to hire a Database Specialist, step by step

To hire a database specialist, you should create an ideal candidate profile, determine a budget, and post and promote your job. Here's a step-by-step guide on how to hire a database specialist:

  • Step 1: Identify your needs
  • Step 2: Create an ideal candidate profile
  • Step 3: Make a budget
  • Step 4: Writing a database specialist job description
  • Step 5: Post the job
  • Step 6: Interview process
  • Step 7: Send a job offer and onboard your new database specialist
  • Step 8: Go through the checklist for the hiring process

Identify Your Needs

The first step in the database specialist hiring process is determining what type of worker you actually need. For example, certain roles might require a full-time employee, whereas others can be done by part-time workers or contractors.

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A database specialist's background is also an important factor in determining whether they'll be a good fit for the position. For example, database specialists from different industries or fields will have radically different experiences and will bring different viewpoints to the role. You also need to consider the candidate's previous level of experience to make sure they'll be comfortable with the job's level of seniority.

The list breaks down common database specialist roles and compares their salaries.

Type Of Database SpecialistDescriptionHourly Rate
Database SpecialistDatabase administrators (DBAs) use specialized software to store and organize data, such as financial information and customer shipping records. They make sure that data are available to users and are secure from unauthorized access.$25-53
Data AdministratorAs a data administrator, they support the marketing, sales, finance, and operations departments by providing accurate, complete, and current data to the customer, product, inventory, and vendor. It is the data administrator's responsibility to implement and execute data mining projects and makes reports to provide understanding into sales, marketing, and purchasing opportunities and business trends... Show More$25-57
Lead Database AdministratorA lead database administrator or DBA serves as a primary technologist in an organization or company. Lead database administrators are technical experts in terms of database and middleware technology design, tuning, configuration, troubleshooting, and building... Show More$42-71

Create An Ideal Candidate Profile

Before creating a database specialist job description, imagine the ideal employee for this position and begin creating a profile. What skills do they have and what responsibilities do they have to be proficient in?

Here is a list of skills that are commonly associated with database specialist:

Common Skills:
  • Database Management
  • Database Design
  • Database Administration
  • Windows
  • Data Entry
  • Troubleshoot
  • Microsoft SQL Server
  • Management System
  • Linux
  • Data Integrity
  • ETL
  • PowerPoint
  • PL/SQL
  • Data Warehouse
Check All Skills

Here is a list of common responsibilities that database specialists may be expected to fulfill:

  • Assist founder with maintaining and improving internet website manage ERP systems, payroll and self-service human resource system.
  • Used T-SQL skills including creation of user define functions, complex store procedures, query optimization to write automate reporting.
  • Design ETL process involving data quality, testing and information delivery and access to the data warehouse.
  • Develop graphical applications using Java and wxWindows C++ API.
  • Experience includes: * Pre- and post-decision processing of Medicare appeals cases.
  • Create procedures, functions, and triggers; handle database performance and tuning.
Check all Duties

Beyond the basics, you should also consider how well a candidate fits into your company culture. In other words, you should think about how your ideal database specialist will live by the company's mission statement and contribute to the team dynamic you already have in place.

Most Common States For Database Specialists In The US

Rank #State# Of Jobs% of PopulationAvg. Salary
2North Carolina8728%$82,803
5New Jersey6878%$91,853

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Make A Budget

Including a salary range in the job description can help attract top candidates to the position. A database specialist salary can be affected by several factors, such as the location of the job, the level of experience and seniority of the candidate, any certifications they may hold, and the prestige of the company they will be working for. For example, the average salary for a database specialist in Arizona may be lower than in Massachusetts, and an entry-level database specialist may earn less than a senior-level database specialist. Additionally, a database specialist with certifications may command a higher salary, and working for a well-known company or start-up may also impact an employee's pay.

Updated March 16, 2023

Database Specialist Salary Estimate


$37.33 hourly

Entry level Salary
$53,000 yearly

Database Specialist Average Salary By Location

RankStateAvg. SalaryHourly RateJob Count
3New Jersey$91,972$44
5District of Columbia$87,603$427

Database Specialist Average Salary By Company

RankCompanyAverage SalaryHourly RateJob Openings
2MUFG EMEA$128,372$61.72
5Publicis Sapient$115,611$55.58
6Thomson Reuters$107,821$51.84
8Booz Allen Hamilton$106,411$51.1655
15ING USA Holding Corporation$94,348$45.361
16Level One Bank$93,151$44.78
17American Girl$93,143$44.78
19The TJX Companies$90,668$43.592

Writing a Database Specialist Job Description

A job description for a database specialist role includes a summary of the job's main responsibilities, required skills, and preferred background experience. Including a salary range can also go a long way in attracting more candidates to apply, and showing the first name of the hiring manager can also make applicants more comfortable. As an example, here's a database specialist job description:

Example of Full Job Description

  • BS or BA degree in a Computer Science, Information Systems Management, Operations Research, or Engineering.
  • ALLOWABLE SUBSTUTION: Six (6) years of related experience or four (4) years of related experience with an AA/AS degree.

Minimum Experience Required:

  • Experience in Azure, or Cloud services and Cloud migrations is preferred.
  • Six (6) years of experience with database administration, database security and integrity, programming and writing scripts in MS-SQL, T-SQL or UNIX, development and management, including design and creation using best practices, importing, exporting, indexing, back-up, data processing, and database management.
  • IAT Level II baseline certification in accordance with DoD 8570.01-M, Information Assurance Workforce Improvement Program, (or achieve within six months of hiring).

Security Clearance: Secret clearance based upon a SSBI or SSBI-PR completed within the past five years.

Scheduled Weekly Hours:


Travel Required:

Less than 10%

T elecommuting Options:


Work Location:

USA VA Arlington

Additional Work Locations:

COVID-19 Vaccination: GDIT does not have a vaccination mandate applicable to all employees. To protect the health and safety of its employees and to comply with customer requirements, however, GDIT may require employees in certain positions to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Vaccination requirements will depend on the status of the federal contractor mandate and customer site requirements.We are GDIT. The people supporting some of the most complex government, defense, and intelligence projects across the country. We deliver. Bringing the expertise needed to understand and advance critical missions. We transform. Shifting the ways clients invest in, integrate, and innovate technology solutions. We ensure today is safe and tomorrow is smarter. We are there. On the ground, beside our clients, in the lab, and everywhere in between. Offering the technology transformations, strategy, and mission services needed to get the job done.GDIT is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or veteran status, or any other protected class.

Post A Job

To find the right database specialist for your business, consider trying out a few different recruiting strategies:

  • Consider internal talent. One of the most important sources of talent for any company is its existing workforce.
  • Ask for referrals. Reach out to friends, family members, and current employees and ask if they know or have worked with database specialists they would recommend.
  • Recruit at local colleges. Attend job fairs at local colleges to recruit database specialists who meet your education requirements.
  • Social media platforms. LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter now have more than 3.5 billion users, and you can use social media to reach potential job candidates.

Post your job online:

  • Post your database specialist job on Zippia to find and attract quality database specialist candidates.
  • Use niche websites such as dice,, stack overflow, it job pro.
  • Post a job on free websites.

Interview Process

Your first interview with database specialist candidates should focus on their interest in the role and their specific background experience. As the hiring process goes on, you can learn more about how they'd fit into the company culture in later rounds of interviews.

It's also a good idea to ask about candidates' special skills and talents to see if they map with your ideal candidate profile. If you think a candidate is good enough for the next step, you can move on to the technical interview.

In some cases, it's not enough just to interview database specialist candidates, so you can ask them to do a test project. If you are not a technical person and don't know what a test project should be, you can use these websites:

  • TestDome
  • CodeSignal
  • Testlify
  • BarRaiser
  • Coderbyte

The right interview questions can help you assess a candidate's hard skills, behavioral intelligence, and soft skills.

Send A Job Offer And Onboard Your New Database Specialist

Once you have selected a candidate for the position, it is time to create an offer letter. In addition to salary, the offer letter should include details about benefits and perks that are available to the employee. It is important to make sure that your offer is competitive, as qualified candidates may be considering other job opportunities. The candidate may wish to negotiate the terms of the offer, and it is important to be open to discussion and reach a mutually beneficial agreement. After the offer has been accepted, it is a good idea to formalize the agreement with a contract.

It's equally important to follow up with applicants who don't get the job with an email letting them know that the position has been filled.

After that, you can create an onboarding schedule for a new database specialist. Employee Action Forms should be completed by Human Resources and the hiring manager. Human Resources should also ensure that onboarding paperwork is completed, including I-9s, benefits enrollment, federal and state tax forms, etc., and that new employee files are created.

Go Through The Checklist For The Hiring Process

  • Determine employee type (full-time, part-time, contractor, etc.)
  • Submit a job requisition form to the HR department
  • Define job responsibilities and requirements
  • Establish budget and timeline
  • Determine hiring decision makers for the role
  • Write job description
  • Post job on job boards, company website, etc.
  • Promote the job internally
  • Process applications through applicant tracking system
  • Review resumes and cover letters
  • Shortlist candidates for screening
  • Hold phone/virtual interview screening with first round of candidates
  • Conduct in-person interviews with top candidates from first round
  • Score candidates based on weighted criteria (e.g., experience, education, background, cultural fit, skill set, etc.)
  • Conduct background checks on top candidates
  • Check references of top candidates
  • Consult with HR and hiring decision makers on job offer specifics
  • Extend offer to top candidate(s)
  • Receive formal job offer acceptance and signed employment contract
  • Inform other candidates that the position has been filled
  • Set and communicate onboarding schedule to new hire(s)
  • Complete new hire paperwork (i9, benefits enrollment, tax forms, etc.)
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Hiring Database Specialists FAQs

How Much Does A Good Database Specialist Cost?

A good database specialist costs $37.33 an hour in the US. However, it can vary based on factors such as the database specialist experience, abilities, industry, and the specific requirements of your business.

What Are The Duties Of A Database Specialist?

The duties of a database specialist are:
  • Assist founder with maintaining and improving internet website manage ERP systems, payroll and self-service human resource system.
  • Used T-SQL skills including creation of user define functions, complex store procedures, query optimization to write automate reporting.
  • Design ETL process involving data quality, testing and information delivery and access to the data warehouse.

Should I Hire A Database Specialist With No Experience?

Yes, you should hire a database specialist with no experience. Hiring an entry-level database specialist with no experience offers versatility for your team. They may lack some qualifications, but are adaptable and have not yet formed problematic habits. However, more training may be required compared to experienced.

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