IDUG Survey Results
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"Data Professionals Broaden Their Skills,". The document is currently posted on IDUG's Web site and can be downloaded free-of-charge.
IDUG partnered with Unisphere Media to conduct the survey of IDUG members on this important topic. Sponsored by CA, the survey gathered input from more than 850 data professionals, with some enlightening results that will help IDUG further serve your needs.
From a publishing perspective, I was encouraged to see that many of the books that are currently available, along with those that are in the works, meet the needs of most of the respondents.
For example, it was mentioned several times in the document that DBAs need the following types of information: database performance and tuning, SQL performance, backup and recovery, and data availability. The recently published book by George Baklarz and Paul Zikopolous, DB2 9 for Linux, UNIX, and Windows: DBA Guide, Reference, and Exam Prep (6th Edition) covers all of the topics and confirms to me that this book is the must have book for all DBAs! The upcoming book by Roger Sanders and Dwaine Snow, DB2 9 for Linux, UNIX, and Windows Advanced Database Administration Certification: Certification Study Guide will make an excellent companion book for this audience as it may go into more depth on some of the topics mentioned.
The document also mentioned that more DBAs are finding the need to perform application development tasks such as SQL statement development, data modeling and design, and data access methods. In addition to the Baklarz/Zikopolous book already mentioned, you should consider the book by Philip Gunning: DB2 9 for Developers . As the title implies, the book covers the application development tasks that a DBA is required to perform.
Always an important topic is database security: "Forty-one percent reported their time engaged in data security activities has grown over the past year. Most activity in this area has been focused on access control and user authentication, and managing users, roles and permissions." I would recommend the following book: Understanding DB2 9 Security by Rebecca Bond, Kevin Yeung-Kuen See, Carmen Ka Man Wong, and Yuk-Kuen Henry Chan
Certification was also mentioned in the survey results, but the message was: "Certification, while valuable, is only prevalent at a minority of sites, the survey found. About 47 percent of respondents - the largest segment - said a quarter or fewer of staff members are certified or working toward certification. Another 21 percent have no certified staff at all." I found this to be surprising as certification exams are extremely popular with the IDUG conference attendees. The books that support our certification program are: DB2 Certification Study Guides.
Lastly I found the difference between database consultants and database administrators interesting: "The priorities of respondents who spend most of their time in business consulting-related activities differ sharply from those mainly engaged in traditional database administration. While both types of data professionals are likely to be focused on managing explosive data growth, data managers engaged in business consulting are far more likely than traditional database administrators to be focusing on developing service-oriented architectures (34 percent versus 18 percent). Likewise, respondents engaged in business consulting roles are more likely to be moving forward business intelligence initiatives (33 percent versus 18 percent). Enterprise information integration is also more of a top concern among professionals engaged with the business (31 percent versus 21 percent)."
For this audience, I'd highly recommend the growing list of SOA titles from IBM Press, especially Enterprise Master Data Management: An SOA Approach to Managing Core Information which I was closely involved with.
I encourage everyone to read and interpret the results from this survey for themselves. The document is 23 pages in length and worth the time to read.