dba team

How to burn out your DBA team

How to burn out your DBA as quickly as possible

Are you trying to get rid of your DBA – or DBA team? Want to make a reputation for your IT shop that will make recruitment borderline impossible? Simply want to make somebody’s life miserable? Then this article is for you!

(Note If you want a happy DBA that stays with you, do the opposite.)

  • Put your DBA on call 24×7
    1. Nobody wants solo responsibility for a system. People like to go to dinner… a movie… a vacation… sleep… and should be allowed to.
  • No backup DBA team
    1. This is a corollary to #1. Of course, if you have no backup DBA, #1 is easy.
  • Make your DBA work long hours
    1. 80-hour weeks happen sometimes, but after a while, it gets old
  • Lots of weekend / late night patching and deployment
    1. Many sites have this one down pat… they have a Friday night (or weekend) deployment every week, with all hands on deck. This is a great way to make people update their resumes. They work hard all week, then at the peak of exhaustion, they have to perform a task which requires high concentration and late hours, followed by another long week.
  • Additional tasks with no training
    1. Good ideas are upgrades, new features, migrations, and implementing high-availability systems, as well as monitoring same
  • Blame the DBA team for everything
    1. Some shops even have rooms dedicated to this – often called a “War Room” – where the stated purpose is to diagnose issues but the end result is often finger pointing.
  • Long commutes
    1. This is most prevalent in large cities (NYC, Atlanta, LA), where commutes in the 1-2 hour range are not unusual. We recently hired a NYC DBA who was commuting 2.25 hours every day, in EACH direction, from central NJ. Bonus: Add #3 to this (long hours) for extra special burn-out.


Retaining your DBAs

For starters, do the opposite of all the above.

On top of that, consider a hiring a backup team of expert DBAs (like us). This get you:

  • Business continuity (in case they jointly win the lottery, buy an island, and toss their cell phones into the ocean)
  • Depth of knowledge (chances are, we’ve done it before)
  • Breadth of knowledge (…and in most industries)
  • Evening and weekend coverage
  • Expert-level assistance, on demand (also, we’re all on shore).

Contact us today to learn more.




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