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What Are Common Database Interview Questions?

Database interview questions can range from basic to advanced.
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  • Written By: Angela Johnson
  • Edited By: PJP Schroeder
  • Last Modified Date: 03 September 2014
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During an interview for a position working with databases, there are common database interview questions that tend to be asked. Some of these questions include, "What are the advantages or disadvantages of creating multiple indexes on a table," or "What are different types of joins?" These questions are very broad database interview questions, but they are important nonetheless. Typically, a director of an IT department conducts the interview if specific technical backgrounds are required for the database position. A few advanced database questions can be asked, such as, "What is the difference between a data warehouse database and a transaction database?"

In preparing for a database job interview, it is recommended to make a list of practice questions and answers to study. Most database positions require the basic knowledge of creating multiple indexes. There may be questions surrounding this operation. Recognizing the pitfalls a database technician may fall into is good knowledge, and this should be shared with the person who is conducting the interview. This shows the potential employer that foreseeing obstacles is a key attribute and can be a valuable tool for a good employee.

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If the interview is being conducted by a human resources manager, he or she may not have the technical background to ask specific database interview questions. It is important to brush up on standard interview questions, such as the reasons for wanting to work for that specific organization and some of the hardest struggles that have been overcome in previous jobs. Turning a negative into a positive can work wonders in a job interview of any kind.

Database positions are generally organized under the supervision of an IT manager. If this is the case, the IT manager would likely conduct the first or second interview in this process. As they know specifically what they are looking for, they will pose technical database interview questions to the interviewee. Some of these questions may include the differences between types of databases. They may also ask, "Why would it be advantageous to use a warehouse database versus a transaction database," as well as explaining the disadvantages of each.

It is important to do research on the company and job specifics in order to be prepared fully for what the company is seeking in terms of experience and skills. Preparing a list of questions to ask the interviewer about the company is also a good idea. Ultimately, the questions asked in an interview help determine whether a company is a fit for an employee and vice versa.

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