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Moving forward with my career

 
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Good day everyone, from what I read, this seems to be a gathering place for some sharp and experienced minds. It is my hope to glean some insight from those of you who are willing to share it.

So, my name is Oren, 31 years old, I came from business admin academic background and about a year ago managed to shift to business intelligence after undergoing a professional course.
My daily work is not what you would call standard I guess... I am a part of the company's automation team- and I handle creating reports that monitor R&D KPI's rather than business ones- version pass rates, bugs, find correlation between technological specs and bugs to point out where the research team might want to focus their future work and so forth. Lots of SQL from several server sources, Now facilitating ETL process via SSIS, and reports via SSRS - formerly on SQL Server 2012 and now moving to 16- I don't believe we'll really touch OLAP cubes in the foreseeable future.

I decided to enroll to another technological course this year, and I find myself divided between two options.

1- DBA:
* There's a need for administrative knowledge in the team, we own several virtual machines and databases, and none in the team is database oriented(except for myself, but there's a limit as to how much administration you learn when you learn BI)- so I get hands on experience from day one.
* This will enhance my abilities as a BI developer since I will have a good understanding of how things work on the administrative level- create proper indexes, table architecture and so forth.
* I will be able to push my career in either avenue- more options.
* Though I find DBA 'ing interesting, I am more interested in the application DBA route rather than the maintenance/IT infrastructure.
* Some portions of the course, I will already be familiar with, so I may be getting a lesser "bang for buck" for some parts of the course.

2- Big Data- a buzzword if there ever was one, but saying it'll go away is naive' at best.
* The money definitely seems to be there, and the technology sounds interesting.
* The route of Data Architect/Engineer hits right at where I would like to see myself in a few years- be the owner and architect of database related solutions infrastructure in R&D environment.
* I have zero experience in the field, and no programming background. I am going to an Edx course - intro to computer science with python but I am not deluding myself into thinking it's substantial.
* The chances of me being able to utilize what I learn in practice do not seem very high- and getting into big data at another company with my experience being primarily in relational databases doesn't feel very high.

I would really love to hear your opinions and insight as to what you think about this dilemma. I am not asking anyone to make the decision for me, but hearing insights, ideas and opinions is very helpful.



 
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Welcome to the Ranch

I don't know much about either option, but...
How much do you actually know about databases? You may find you have forgotten most of what you knew, and you may find that the starting point for both DBA and big data will be learning databases again.
 
Oren Harel
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Valid question, but it's a bit difficult to answer, since you're asking about things I don't know that I don't know, if you get my drift .
I finished my BI course a year ago, which isn't a whole lot, I've been working on BI for the past year- allot of work directly with the DB scheme- since we manage our own database server, we created indexes and so forth... so I think my knowledge is above average relative to a person with 1 year worth of experience, since it is being put to the test day in and day out.

I'm from Israel, we start working/college/both only in our early twenties- my shift to databases is fairly recent, I haven't had time to forget much

Thanks for asking!
 
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I think you should choose the Big Data one. You sound more passionate about it. Also, if you obtain the knowledge, you have the ability to try to position yourself for that job.
 
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