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Connecting the Dots: Programming, SQL, and IT


This week, we focused on what SQL is, why it’s important, and even previewed Microsoft SQL Server 2016! Let’s tie it all together — programming languages, SQL, and IT!

IT is a diverse field, so it follows that IT professionals come from a diverse range of backgrounds. Some have graduate degrees in computer science, maybe some majored in the arts and ended up in technology, while others didn’t pursue higher education, but learned IT skills through on-the-job experience.

IT pros from any background can benefit from ongoing training. Learning new skills enables you to excel in your current role and contributes to future career development. One of the most beneficial subjects to pursue is programming, and depending on your career path, SQL.

Why Should IT Pros Learn Programming?
At its core, programming enables us to interact with machines and information systems. Programming is also essential to automation, which is an inescapable element of the modern workplace.

Versatility. Learning programming languages makes any member of an IT department more versatile, and even invaluable to the rest of the company. It also provides practical benefits that you can use on the job, on a daily basis.

Automation. Even in smaller IT environments, learning about code and acquiring the programming skills to be able to problem-solve can help you to create automated solutions. Automation doesn’t have to be fancy — simple scripts can save time, headaches, and money.

Have you ever cobbled together scripts you’ve found on StackOverflow, crossed your fingers, and hoped for the best? We’ve all done it. With a little time and determination, anyone is able to learn programming languages. And when you’re in IT, you’ll reap the benefits more than most.

How to Choose a Programming Language.
That’s a tough one. There’s no one-size-fits-all answer.

Pick your language based on the systems you use at your job, and as well as your own personal career aspiration.

You’ll probably pursue the language that makes the most sense in your situation, such as AngularJS for building websites, or more general-purpose languages such as Java, Python, XML, Perl, or C++. You also can factor in system-specific tools that you may be using or want to learn, like PowerShell.

If you’re working with databases often, then you’ll probably want to learn SQL.

Why You Need to Learn SQL
If your business is like most, it likely can’t run without functional, clean, and optimized databases. As business rely on a greater quantity of data, you’ll find yourself in greater demand.

If you’re a programming novice, don’t worry. SQL is easy to understand and learn, and will be one of the most useful tools in your IT toolbox once you master it.

Understanding databases, not just how they work and interact, but also how to administer them and diagnose performance issues is key for any sysadmin or other IT pro. Knowing SQL well enough to write useful queries and manipulate structure data can help you be more self-reliant and even fill in as a database admin when necessary. Rather than relying on pre-built reports, you’re able to directly query for the data you need to answer any question about the business.

Even outside traditional IT department tasks, SQL is a beneficial tool. It’s hard to miss the buzz around business intelligence, big data, and analytics. Being able to actually perform the operations behind these buzzwords is not only impressive, it provides tremendous business value.

If you ever decide to make a career shift, learning SQL places you on a good path to specialize. You may even decide to become a SQL Developer or DBA — and that often means a higher salary and a more vital role in a company.

Getting Started

Critical analysis, logic, and creativity are required in all IT jobs, and the same goes for programming. Learning to write code — and combining it with your existing abilities and experience takes your skill set to the next level.

Want to start learning how to program? Take yourself all way to expert level with CBT Nuggets training!

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CBT Nuggets has everything you need to learn new IT skills and advance your career — unlimited video training and Practice Exams, Virtual Labs, validated learning with in-video Quizzes, Accountability Coaching, and access to our exclusive community of IT professionals.

Learn more about the CBT Nuggets Learning Experience.


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