The Southern Illinois University Edwardsville MBA with a Business Analytics Specialization online program includes a course titled Database Design. It explores data modeling, conceptual database design, entity-relationship and object-oriented models, physical database design, relational models, and normalization theory.
Why Are Databases So Important in Business?
Database management systems are pools of information that help to manage vital business information, including employee records, payroll, accounting, project management, inventory management and customer relationship management (CRM) data. Within these systems, data is categorized and structured so that it can be pulled, analyzed and evaluated. Having organized databases enables executives to extract business intelligence on which to make statistically reliable forecasts and decisions. Organized databases allow many functions within the business to contribute and extract data. Because employees can quickly access dependable data, they can do their jobs more efficiently and reliably.
A Good Database Fulfills Six Objectives
A database must be secured, stored, organized and readily accessible to a variety of users. From a career perspective, there are many opportunities for graduates in each of the following objectives of database design:
- Usability: Making the database fit with organizational requirements and architecture.
- Extensibility: Equipping the system to be able to adopt new requirements with minimal effort and expense.
- Data integrity: Ensuring that data is correct, and that there are measures to spot and rectify entries with missing or incorrect attributes.
- Performance: The database design must ensure that data is always accessible, transmits accurately between users and scales up as data increases.
- Availability: Uptime, disaster recovery, redundancy, archiving and network delivery are all key components of database availability.
- Security: Access must be restricted and protected so that confidential information is not leaked or exposed, leaving the business and individuals in the database vulnerable.
A Program Alumnus Speaks to the Value of Database Design
Program graduate Joseph Leonard founded JoricGaming, LLC, a game streaming partner that does promotion and advertising for computer games and computer products. He highlights the career value of SIUE’s course. “When you think database design, you would think that you’re going to be on the computer 90% of the time, but there was actually no computer work! It was all designing from scratch, drawing storyboards and concept plans. I found that fascinating,” Leonard says.
The course lit a fire under Leonard that benefits every aspect of his entrepreneurial venture today. “I designed my own database right after taking that class,” he said. “So much of what I do relies on strong data, and I had been basically keeping bits and pieces of cost analysis in Excel. I now have a database I built in Microsoft Access. I am able to track all the clients that I deal with, how much I charge them and product trends. I can immediately go to my database using SQL and pull up all of the data on a company that I am preparing to work with. That class was a godsend.”
On a broader level, Leonard used database design to chart and understand the contributing factors to his business’s growth. “I did an analysis of my company to see how much growth I had experienced between January and December of 2018. People can come watch my channel day to day, and they can support me by subscribing to it. I tracked follower growth, support growth and subscriber growth. I was able to go in and identify patterns and trends and growth. I was also able to identify some problem areas that I’ve been able to fix since doing the analysis report.”
Because big data is so prevalent in industry today, the discipline of database design has practical applications in a wide range of careers. Managers with a solid educational base in this discipline are better prepared to hit the ground running, regardless of industry or role.
Learn more about SIUE’s online MBA program with a Business Analytics Specialization.