Exploring DBA: Overview, Roles, and Responsibilities

Anand Ganapathy

DBA, also known as the Doctorate of Business Administration, is currently one of the most sought-after degree programs across the globe. In fact, a recent study claims that the demand for DBA has increased drastically over the past few years. With the number of DBA programs being doubled in academic institutions since 2004, the enormous growth reflects its emerging popularity among business aspirants. 

But what exactly is a DBA, and what are the opportunities after completing this degree?

Let’s dive in to find answers to all such questions and discover the value of DBA!

What is DBA?

Doctorate of Business Administration is a postgraduate degree program specifically designed for experienced business professionals who want to boost their career growth and open doors to management roles. It is primarily a research-based program that combines practical and theoretical knowledge of the business world. Candidates are trained with the necessary skills and abilities to emerge as successful leaders in their respective fields. 

One of the most common mistakes with DBA is that people think it is very similar to a PhD. While a DBA might be somewhat equivalent to a PhD, there are a few fundamental differences between them. 

Unlike a Doctorate Degree in Business Administration, PhD graduates are expected to enter the academic profession after completing their course. On the other hand, DBA graduates are more advanced and high-achieving business practitioners who are expected to be professionals in operating companies by obtaining senior roles within management.

Who Should Apply For A DBA?

As mentioned, DBA is specifically designed for experienced professionals in the business industry. While possessing a master’s degree is enough to apply for the course, it is highly recommended for people with significant work experience.

The Doctorate in Business Administration will be appropriate for those individuals who

  • Are looking for opportunities to move into senior roles or positions
  • Are experienced professionals seeking to enhance their practical knowledge and skills
  • Have an MBA or any other equivalent executive degree and want to pursue the highest level of professional qualifications in Business Administration
  • Have pursued a bachelor’s degree many years ago and want to become competent in a fast changing environment

Why Is DBA Getting So Popular?

The demand for a DBA degree has doubled over the last few years while receiving the honor of being the highest degree bestowed on business personnel. Several reasons can be attributed to its increasing popularity. Some of them might include,

  • It provides a comprehensive, in-depth knowledge of all the nuances of business administration.
  • It is considered to be highly valuable by recruiters.
  • The curriculum of this degree is designed to train professionals for leadership positions in organizations
  • It takes much lesser time to complete than a PhD program.
  • It allows students to conduct research and apply their knowledge in the field of business administration.
  • Extends lucrative opportunities to graduates compared to business professionals with a master’s or bachelor’s only. 

In today’s dynamic environment, businesses have become increasingly complex and globalized. Subsequently, the need for efficient leaders who can think strategically, and come up with innovative and effective solutions, has also increased. This is where a DBA degree comes into play. 

Duration of Doctorate in Business Administration

Typically, a DBA degree consists of 56-60 credits, which takes up to 2-3 years to complete. The course can be quite rigorous and requires individuals to have an in-depth understanding of relevant backgrounds in order to qualify for the degree. Some institutes offer the advantage of part-time DBA programs to working individuals. It might take longer to complete the program in such scenarios, exceeding threeyears. 

There have been some instances where a few business schools have offered an accelerated approach to complete the DBA program. However, it can lead to stress and workload, which will ultimately result in failure. Therefore, even if you are considering opting for such a course, ensure that it is done under the supervision of a leader or mentor who will guide you through the various steps to balance your professional and personal life. 

What Will You Study In DBA?

The course content of a DBA program usually varies from university to university. Nonetheless, there are a few common topics that you can expect in every DBA course. Those are

Business and Management Theory

It includes discussions and advanced teaching on the modern business world’s key theoretical issues and topics. 

Research Principles

Candidates are trained in all the nuances of effective business and management principles, including organizational challenges and key objectives. 

Research Methods and Designs

It includes an in-depth study of all the latest research methods and designs necessary for effective research projects in business and management. Furthermore, students are also made aware of some of the common aspects of the business world, such as project management, research ethics, and data collection. 

Job Roles After A DBA Degree

Earning a DBA degree opens doors to a plethora of job opportunities ranging from C-level executives to management analysts and many more. It gives you that competitive edge and also increases your chances of landing a high-salary job that comes alongside diverse other occupational benefits. On that note, here are some job positions you can explore after completing your DBA program. 

Management Analyst

A management analyst guides organization managers on various effective strategies to revamp the bottom line by reducing costs. Furthermore, they collaborate with other team members and design plans to generate increased revenue. 

The average salary of a management analyst is estimated to be around $71,212 per year. Accenture, Morgan Stanley and Citi are some of the top companies currently hiring potential candidates for this position. 

C-Level Executives

C-Level executives is an umbrella term that refers to all the senior management roles ranging from Chief Executive Officer to Chief Operations Officer. They are the highest designation in any company and are generally considered to be the decision-makers of a corporate organization. The average salary of C-level executives is estimated to be nearly $105,538 per year. 

Market Research Analyst

A market research analyst is responsible for conducting extensive market research on products and services in their respective target markets. They are directly responsible for the success of an organization. To get selected for the role of a market research analyst, you need to have excellent communication skills alongside problem-solving ability. This is where a DBA degree might prove fruitful since it prepares students for all kinds of challenges in the business world.

The current estimated salary of a market research analyst is $63,848 per year. The Washington Post, Mondo, and Unilever are a few of the many companies currently hiring potential candidates for this position. 

Apart from the positions mentioned above, DBA graduates get to explore many lucrative market opportunities. These roles include economists, professors, organizational development managers, and logisticians. 


Perceiving all the valuable advantages associated with a DBA degree, it is by far proved to be one of the most effective ways to scale upwards through the corporate ladder without sacrificing your professional or personal life. The demand for DBA in today’s world is massive, as more and more recruiters are hiring candidates with extensive knowledge and training in their field of interest. Adding a DBA degree to your resume will undoubtedly offer your candidature an edge over others, highlighting your persistence and expertise in your relevant discipline. 

With that being said, we recommend applying for the Doctor of Business Administration program brought to you by the very prestigious Golden Gate University. This 36 months duration program is specifically designed for working professionals and comes with numerous benefits, including live and interactive faculty, 24*7 student support, global case study discussions, and 1:1 thesis supervision. 

So, what are you waiting for? 

Enrol now and kickstart your journey towards success!


Q1: What are the eligibility criteria for DBA?

Ans: Most institutions require candidates to have a Master’s degree, alongside a minimum of 3 years of work experience, in order to qualify for a DBA program. It is a postgraduate degree specifically designed for middle to senior-level professionals: hence significant experience is required. 

Q2: Is a DBA better than a PhD?

Ans: While both these degrees represent the highest level of academic achievement and are highly respected, there are a few fundamental differences between a DBA and a PhD. The latter involves a research-based approach wherein candidates are expected to bring significant contributions to knowledge. DBA, on the other hand, comprises classes and applied research work to improve professional practice. 

Q3: What is the value of DBA?

Ans: Although not as popular as MBA or PhD, a DBA degree can prove to be quite valuable because of the innumerable benefits that it brings to the table. It provides students with an academic environment wherein they can indulge in exploring research-based solutions to the latest challenges faced by the business world. Furthermore, it also trains students in all the necessary skill sets required for landing a high-paying job in the corporate world.


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