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Data Engineer Job Description

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Data engineers help firms improve the efficiency of information processing systems. They also research, design and test a company's data management software, ensuring that it meets business requirements and industry practices.


A data engineer researches the latest software engineering tools, oversees the construction of precise and large-scale data sets, and performs database research to recommend ways to improve the quality of data. He also makes decisions and solves problems, and communicates with superiors, peers and subordinates.

Aptitude, Tools and Technologies

According to the job resources portal O*Net OnLine, a data engineer must have effective communication skills, good vision, solid programming knowledge and math acumen. She often interacts with high-end computer servers, integrated circuit testers and object-oriented development software, such as C++ and Sun Microsystems Java.

Education and Earnings

A data engineer position typically requires a bachelor’s degree in computer science or electrical engineering. However, employers often prefer candidates with master's degrees for senior roles. The average annual salary for a data engineer was $98,860 as of 2020, according to the career data website Indeed.

Database Administrators salary

  • Top 10% Annual Salary: More than $155,660 ($74.84/hour)
  • Median Annual Salary: $98,860 ($47.53/hour)
  • Bottom 10% Annual Salary: Less than $54,070 ($26.00/hour)

Marquis Codjia is a New York-based freelance writer, investor and banker. He has authored articles since 2000, covering topics such as politics, technology and business. A certified public accountant and certified financial manager, Codjia received a Master of Business Administration from Rutgers University, majoring in investment analysis and financial management.

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