This isn’t about having a sucky job, this is about you sucking at your job. There’s a big difference. You could be sucking at your job because you hate your job and just don’t care. I get that. In that case though, you know better but choose not to do better.
I’ve encountered some people that have Senior DBA as their job title but don’t really have senior-level experience. I’ve seen some very questionable things in my career.
Signs you aren’t a Senior DBA
- Not checking the databases for corruption
- Shrinking databases on a schedule or using auto-shrink
- Not knowing what wait stats are or how to use them
- Relying on the Database Tuning Advisor to determine which indexes are needed
- Using Activity Monitor – I might get some flack on that one, but it’s true
- Thinking that 1 FULL backup and 1 LOG backup per day is sufficient for an RPO goal of anything less than 24 hours
- Thinking you should set MAXDOP to 1 to avoid CXPACKET waits
- Updating statistics after the respective index was rebuilt
- Not monitoring your systems – you don’t need expensive monitoring tools to monitor your systems!
- Manually doing a task over and over again when it can be automated
- Ignoring job failures and warnings/errors in the Error Log
- Not checking for high-value missing indexes periodically
- Using maintenance plans – I’m okay, though I still dislike them, if you use them for backups or DBCC CHECKDB but not for index maintenance
- Not patching your servers
- Not trying to improve your skills – don’t rely on your company to send you to training
What would you add to this list? What are the questionable things you’ve seen a Senior DBA doing or not doing?
How do you stack up?
I’ve done many of these things, but I was either a Junior DBA or an Intermediate DBA.
How many of these are you doing? The higher your number is, the less of a Senior DBA you are. It’s all fixable! Spend some time figuring out why you shouldn’t be doing these.