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How to Hire Database Developers in 2023 - The Ultimate Guide

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08 March, 2022

Today, data has become an integral part of forming a business strategy, and the success of a business depends on how well it manages its database. That's why there's high demand for database developers across industries.

Database developers, also known as database programmers, are responsible for creating and implementing new databases or modifying existing ones based on changing user needs.

These professionals must possess advanced knowledge of database objects, structure, and management. They must also be skilled in programming languages and data modeling.

Naturally, recruiters from a non-technical background will have a hard time identifying these skills and finding the right database developer for their business.

This guide aims to make their job easier by providing details on how to hire database developers. It covers all there is to database developer hiring, from the skills required to hiring steps, hiring models, candidate sourcing, screening processes, and more.

What Does a Database Developer Do?

Database developers design and implement new database software or work on the company's existing DBS to make them more efficient. Here are the roles and responsibilities of a database developer:

  • Design and build a stable, reliable, efficient database that facilitates easy data storage, access, manipulation, and analysis
  • Ensure the performance, productivity, and 24/7 availability of data with effective database maintenance
  • Monitor database usage to identify database performance issues and find optimization opportunities
  • Implement security protocols to ensure data integrity, consistency, and enterprise security
  • Create data archives, perform regular backups, and plan effective recovery to ensure business continuity even during disasters.


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Why Do Companies Need to Hire Database Developers?

Database requirements vary from company to company. Each has a different specification regarding accessibility, consumption, usability, and scalability of their database.

As such, companies require a professional developer who can work on these specifications to refine their database and foster business growth.

Here are some measurable benefits companies get when they hire database developers:


1. Improve Application Performance and Reduce Latency

Performance latency directly affects user experience and negatively impacts the brand image. Hiring database developers can help diagnose variables that contribute to latency.

It could be poor database optimization, poorly written codes, or infrastructure limitations. Once the root cause is identified, data developers can help companies fine-tune their databases to improve performance.

2. Tighten Data Security

Data security is getting more complex, and hackers are getting more sophisticated by the day. With their professional knowledge and expertise, database developers facilitate continuous database monitoring to keep company data safe from attacks.

3. Maintain Transactional Consistency

If businesses are experiencing a rapid increase in transaction volume, they need to hire a database programmer.

The professionals can frequently reorganize and rebuild database indexes to ensure the increasing volume does not affect the response time for each transaction.

4. Enable Regular Data Recovery

A database developer will check for regular backup and data recovery to ensure minimum downtime for business continuity.


Database Developers – Different Roles and Technologies

Database developers are continually modifying and editing databases for better performance. They use their extensive knowledge of database administration software, programming languages, and APIs to interact with data and maintain its quality and integrity.

As is the case, a database developer has to be proficient and up-to-date with the latest database technologies and trends. It will enable them to implement better data strategies to enhance operational efficiency in business.

Below are some database technologies popular among database developers:

1. MySQL

MySQL is a popular open-source database management system based on SQL (Structured Query Language). It is a fast, multi-threaded, multi-user, robust, and secure database server.

Designed to handle large databases quickly, MySQL offers a rich and useful set of functions for accessing data. It powers many popular data-driven applications such as Facebook, Twitter, Netflix, Shopify, Flickr, YouTube, etc.

Knowledge of MySQL is a must-have for database developers. Here are some assessments recruiters can use to check MySQL skills when they hire database developers:


MSSQL is a relational database management system published by Microsoft. Its primary function is to store and retrieve data as requested by other applications run on the network.

It supports a wide variety of business activities, such as transaction processing, business intelligence, and data analytics.

Many big companies, such as Accenture, Alibaba Travels, Walmart, Groww, etc., use MSSQL in their tech stack. Hence, it is a crucial skill to look for when hiring database developers.

Recruiters can use the following assessments to test MSSQL skills:

3. PostgreSQL

Postgre is another advanced, open-source database supporting both SQL and JSON queries. It consists of a host of features such as multi-version concurrency control, point-in-time recovery, granular access control, online backups, etc.

Companies like Spotify, Instagram, and Reddit use PostgreSQL. Hiring managers can leverage online PostgreSQL tests to assess candidates' knowledge of this DBS technology.

4. MongoDB

MongoDB is a document-based database for storing large-scale data.

It is classified as NoSQL because data is stored in collections and documents instead of tabular formats. Such nesting of data makes fetching and working on data extremely efficient compared to SQL.

Companies like eBay, MetLife, Adobe, Cisco, and the Indian Aadhar system use MongoDB. Recruiters can use the NoSQL assessment test to evaluate MongoDB skills before they hire a database programmer.

If you're intrigued by the world of MongoDB, it's worth exploring the MongoDB Developer roles and responsibilities in the organization.

5. Sybase SQL

Sybase is a relational management software produced by Sybase Inc. It's a high-performance database developed to meet the rising demand for performance, efficiency, and reliability in companies across industries.

IT companies mainly use Sybase SQL. The Sybase SQL developer test is ideal for recruiters looking to hire database developers in Sybase and Sr, Sybase DBA.


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Steps for Hiring Database Developers

While there is a rising demand for data developers, finding the right one for your organization can be tricky. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to hire database developers.

1. Define the Needs of the Company

A recruiter must first identify the company's need to hire a database developer. This includes defining the roles and responsibilities of the position and determining the skills, experience, and qualifications required to fill the shoe.

For a database developer, it means experience working in SQL and NoSQL database systems and knowledge of programming languages and cloud services.

They must also possess soft skills such as analytical skills, excellent communication, and creativity.

2. Create a Job Description

The next step is creating a job description that outlines the role and expectations. The description should be detailed enough to identify the most qualified candidate. It should include the following:

  • Job title and purpose
  • Summary of the role
  • List of expected duties and responsibilities
  • Preferred skills for the position
  • Working conditions

If you're posting the vacancy online, consider adding keywords to improve the visibility of the posting. Some popular keywords associated with database developer positions are:

  • Database administrator
  • Database programmer
  • SQL database developer
  • SQL server database developer
  • Oracle database developer
  • Oracle DBA

3. Determine the Salary Range

The salary for a data developer varies based on the job position. Besides, factors such as experience, qualifications, skills, and location of the candidate also have a role to play.

The typical salary of a database developer ranges from $33,000 to $ 1,87,000 yearly. Since the database developer position is competitive, companies should strive to keep the salary range at par with the industry average. It will help them attract and retain top talent.

4. Choose Between Local and Remote Talent

Hiring full-time local talent may be the best option for companies with a complex database environment. They will be routinely available and ensure optimal performance and efficiency of the database.

However, some businesses do have ongoing needs for database developers. They can handle most of the work on their own and may only require guidance once in a while.

In such cases, it would be cost-effective to hire database developers remotely in a freelance capacity.


Hiring Models to Hire Database Developers

Depending on their requirement and budget, companies can follow various hiring models to find the perfect fit for their business. Below are some popular models for companies to hire database developers, along with their pros and cons:

A. Full-Time Dedicated Resource

This is a typical model of hiring followed by companies with regular database management needs. The full-time experts work dedicatedly for the company and provide periodic progress reports.

Companies can hire professionals themselves or through hiring agencies.


  • Greater control over the project
  • High project quality
  • Frequent reporting
  • Agile process
  • Faster time-to-market


  • Higher costs
  • Not ideal for small projects

B. Fixed Time and Price

In this hiring model, companies hire a team of professionals with the required skill set to complete an IT project for a fixed time and price.

The professionals are usually out-staffed through third-party contractors. The contractor often has a vast pool of developers with varied skills and experiences, ensuring faster project completion.


  • Better matching of candidates' skills with job attributes
  • Readily available developers, resulting in faster time-to-market
  • Ideal for smaller projects
  • Fixed pricing


  • The IT department will have to coordinate with an unfamiliar team
  • Communication challenges may arise
  • More managerial work is required to check the speed, quality, and implementation of the project

C. Hourly Dedicated Resource

If companies do not have the resources to hire a full-time database developer, they can hire a freelancer developer on an hourly basis. Freelancers charge only for the work done, and you need not spend extra on employee benefits.

Many freelancer database developers are available in the market. With some research, companies can find the right candidate for the job.


  • Recruitment flexibility
  • Lower employee cost


  • Freelancers are less accountable
  • Access of sensitive data by strangers
  • Work quality is unpredictable

Where Can You Source Database Developers?

There are several sources where recruiters can find and hire database developers for their business. Here are a few places they can begin with:

1. Database Developer Universities and Training Institutions

Universities and training institutions are great places to find recently graduated database developers. Recruiters can hold placements for freshers or simply advertise their job vacancies to reach out o interested candidates.

2. Database Developer Communities

Many online communities cater to data developers and other technology professionals.

Being active in these communities can help recruiters network with talented professionals and reach out to potential candidates when they need to hire a database programmer.

3. Industry Events

Register for conferences or educational fairs related to data and databases. Not only do they present great learning opportunities, but recruiters also get a chance to meet potential candidates in person.

4. Promote from Within

If your current employees have the necessary skills and expertise within the organization, you can promote them to the position. Not only will it boost employee morale and retention, but it will also help businesses save the cost of new hires.

5. Online Job Sites

Try posting vacancies on popular online job portals popular in the locality. Individuals on the lookout for jobs are active on those sites. Recruiters can then filter out the best candidates from the total number of applicants.


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How Can You Screen and Assess Database Developers?

An efficient and effective way to screen and assess database developers is through iMocha's pre-employment database tests. These assessments help evaluate candidates' technical and non-technical skills so recruiters can hire job-fit candidates.

Coding is an essential part of a database developer role. Hiring managers can use coding simulators to assess candidates' coding skills. They provide a real-life coding environment so recruiters can check the candidates' logical approach to coding.

Similarly, live coding interview tools allow a collaborative interview experience, enabling recruiters to hire remotely without multiple interview rounds.

They can further include iMocha's AI-Logic Box questions in the pre-employment assessment. The pseudo-coding platform allows practical coding evaluation, eliminating the guesswork typical of multiple-choice questions.


Skills to Look for in a Database Developer

An ideal database developer will have the skills and attributes mentioned below. Recruiters must check for these before they hire a database programmer for their organization.

A. Technical Skills

Database developers must be proficient in data structure and database design. They must also have an in-depth understanding of data management, including data permission, recovery, security, and monitoring.

Here are some technical requirements recruiters must check when they hire a database programmer:

  • Knowledge of database objects (tables, indexes, views, statistics)
  • Knowledge of SQL database and programming language
  • Ability to recognize the relationship between data elements
  • Knowledge of ETI and BI tools
  • Ability to write complex SQL queries
  • Experience in project management

B. Soft Skills

Along with the necessary technical skills, database developers also require soft skills to excel in their roles. These include excellent communication, problem-solving, and time-management skills.

They should also have good collaboration skills to get along with their teammates and supervisors. Recruiters can check candidates' recommendation letters or contact their past supervisors to get an understanding of their soft skills.


Challenges You Might Face When Hiring Database Developers

As with any technical role, hiring a database developer has its own set of challenges. The typical difficulties that most recruiters face include the following:

  • Limited pool of candidates and tough market competition
  • Insufficient technical evaluation to identify the most suitable candidate
  • Inefficient screening processes, resulting in longer time-to-hire
  • Lack of proficiency in the hiring team for evaluating database developers
  • Difficulty in consistently engaging candidates during the hiring process
  • Difficulty in assessing coding/programming skills when hiring remotely
  • Limited bandwidth of the internal tech team
  • Biases in hiring decisions
  • Looking for candidates in the wrong places

How iMocha Can Help Ace Your Hiring Game

While the challenges are aplenty, iMocha can help companies counter them. With iMocha's database skill assessment, recruiters can efficiently assess the technical and soft skills of remote developers and hire database developers that best fit their organization.

The assessment contains questions on different aspects of database management for the overall skill assessment of candidates.

Companies can customize the test further to set their difficulty level, add questions, or request a tailor-made test based on the job description.

Using iMocha's easy and unbiased analytics, recruiters can make faster and better hiring decisions and scale their hiring process.

Learn more about how iMocha's talent acquisition platform can transform your recruitment process.


Wondering how to identify critical skills for organizational growth? Talk to our experts to learn how we enable Capgemini, Cognizant, TCS, Fujitsu and other global organizations to do so!




What questions should I ask a database developer?

Database developers should be asked questions to test their database design and data management skills. They should also be tested on their knowledge of SQL, programming languages, and coding skills.


What is the best way to hire database developers in India?

There are several hiring models that Indian companies can follow based on their data management needs.

For long-term projects, a full-time dedicated resource may be most suitable. For smaller projects, companies can hire developers for a fixed time and price.


What is the best way to hire database developers in the US?

The best way to hire database developers in the US depends on the company's needs. 

From nearshore team building to remote hiring, outsourcing to on-demand recruiting, there are multiple approaches for US companies to hire a database programmer.


How much does it cost to hire a freelance database developer?

Typically, freelance database developers charge between $21 to $55 per hour, depending on the project's complexity. An experienced developer may set a higher price for the better quality service they offer.


Skills not matching your role's requirements? Create a custom assessment with iMocha and hire skill fit candidates!


Deval Solanki
Deval Solanki
Deval Solanki is a Business Analyst at iMocha. With a background in Computer Science, he has worked for over 2 years as a Research and Development Analyst. He's very passionate about science and technology. In his spare time, he likes to read about the technological advancements, watch scientific experiments, and indulge in sports activities.

Topics: Tech Recruitment

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