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Top 5 SQL Certifications to Boost Your Career and Income in 2020

Big data and business intelligence have become a necessity for the professionals who want to take their career to the next level. As a matter of fact, these two technical skills have become the top priorities for the IT decision makers, and the reasons for this are quite obvious. The organizations rely on big data to provide insights that will drive critical business decisions. Those specialists who want to explore these opportunities should consider adding SQL Server knowledge to their already existing skill set. This expertise is currently in high demand, and in fact, the SQL certifications have become essential for the individuals who strive to boost their career in 2020.

Earning a SQL credential is definitely one of the ways to validate your knowledge and skills in developing and maintaining complex database solutions. With such a badge, you become a valuable asset to your organization. In this post, we will look at some top SQL certifications that you can obtain in order to increase your potential in the industry. Before that, let’s look at the key benefits that come with getting a SQL badge.

Advantages That You Can Enjoy

Basically, a SQL certification is a significant requirement for people who want to take up the job roles in database administration, analysis, or development. It acts as a springboard for their quick climb up the corporate ladder. It also increases their earning potential in the industry. For instance, the average annual income of the SQL certificate holders ranges between $85,000 and $108,000, depending on their position. Therefore, if you want to pursue a new career path or get a promotion at your current place of work, obtaining a SQL credential is all you need to realize your career dream.

To earn one, adequate preparation is required. Currently, the Microsoft SQL certification paths are one of the best in the industry. It is no longer news that the Microsoft exams are not walk in the park. They require rigorous preparation and close attention to detail. The same is true for the SQL credentials. Before you sit for any prerequisite test, it is recommended that you go through a training course to equip you with the knowledge and skills you need to pass it. Now, let’s look at the SQL path that you can explore under the Microsoft certification program.

Top 5 SQL Certification Paths

The Microsoft SQL certificates can be obtained based on the candidate’s proficiency level. It starts from the Entry level and ends with the Expert one. If you are just starting out in the industry, MTA (Microsoft Technology Associate) is a great place to start. The expert-level credentials (MCSE) are targeted at more advanced professionals. The great thing is that the more badges you earn, the more opportunities you can explore in the senior-level managerial positions. So, let’s finally explore different certifications offered under the SQL path.

1. Microsoft Technology Associate: Database Fundamentals

The MTA: Database Fundamentals credential is an ideal option for the beginners who want to explore the world of SQL. It is also designed for the individuals with no experience because it covers the basics, introductory skills, and knowledge associated with databases and SQL Server. There is no official prerequisite for earning this certificate. However, it is recommended that you have some foundational IT knowledge. There are a good number of training courses that you can explore to gain the skills needed to achieve success in the certification exam.

2. Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate: SQL 2016 Database Administration

For the professionals with up to two years of experience in the IT field, the MCSA: SQL 2016 Database Administration certificate may be a great place to start. It validates their skills in installing, configuring, provisioning, and maintaining databases. By obtaining it, they can take up the job roles, such as infrastructure specialists, architects, or development leads. If the candidates already have the MTA credential, this is also the perfect next step to consider. MTA prepares them for the associate-level tracks. Indeed, the foundational skills and knowledge in IT are very critical to success in the MCSA certification exam.

3. Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate: SQL 2016 BI Development

For those specialists who want to become the BI developers, this MCSA credential is a great option to add to their resume. The certificate validates their skills in ETL as well as data warehouse. In addition to this, it verifies their competence in implementing BI solutions with the use of OLAP cubes as well as tabular and multi-dimensional data models. There are no official requirements for this certification, but you should have the foundational IT skills.

4. Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate: SQL 2016 Database Development

This is another associate-level certificate that validates one’s skills and knowledge in both Cloud-based and on-premises databases. By earning this certification, you can take up the job role of a database developer. The only prerequisite for taking the prerequisite exam is to have the basic IT skills. If you don’t have any, you can consider getting MTA or enroll for the official training courses to develop the required skill set.

5. Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert: Data Management & Analytics

MCSE is an expert-level certification track offered by Microsoft. This particular credential validates your advanced knowledge and skills in administering SQL, managing data in the Cloud and on-premises environments, as well as creating enterprise-level data solutions. With this certificate, you can become a database designer, a business intelligence analyst, or a database analyst. The prerequisite for earning this certification is the availability of MCSA. In addition to this, you have to take an elective exam. In total, there are 8 tests that you can choose from. Their details can be found on the official website.


Thus, these are the top SQL certifications that you can explore to increase your career and earning potential in 2020. Of course, there are other great credentials that you can pursue to develop competence in SQL, but the above-mentioned ones are the most popular certificates. So, if you want to succeed, consider choosing one of them.