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need to get an average

Posted on 2013-02-01
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Last Modified: 2013-02-04
I am trying to get the average pay for a group of people, but the way the database is setup everytime someone gets a raise it is a new entry, so someone could have 1 entry or 20.  This is screwing up my average because it is taking the average of what they originally got paid through what they are making now and I just need their latest pay rate.

For instance this is what I see

Joe Mc  $8
Joe Mc  $8.50
Joe Mc  $10
John Cour  $9

Average = $8.88 where it should be $9.50.  Joe should only count the one time.
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Question by:TomBalla
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4 Comments
 
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Guy Hengel [angelIII / a3] earned 430 total points
ID: 38843882
so, you have to first get the max() value for each, and then average on those, something along this sql code:
select average( max_pay)
  from ( select username, max(pay) as max_pay )
                from yourtable
            group by username
     ) subquery 

Open in new window


the code may need to be varied base on the  db engine

max(pay) may be wrong, if a user could also go "down" on the pay ...
in that case, you may need to consider other techniques, to get the max (or current) date for the pay to consider.
see this article:
http://www.experts-exchange.com/Database/Miscellaneous/A_3203-DISTINCT-vs-GROUP-BY-and-why-does-it-not-work-for-my-query.html
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LVL 101

Expert Comment

by:mlmcc
ID: 38845882
Do you have a date field that indicates when the pay change occurred?

If so you could use that to find the current pay.

Same basic query

select average(pay)
  from ( select username, pay, Max(paydate) as max_paydate )
                from yourtable
            group by username
     ) subquery 

Open in new window


mlmcc
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LVL 35

Expert Comment

by:James0628
ID: 38846592
mlmcc,

 I don't think that will work.  The sub-query will include each different pay rate, so you're still getting an average for all of the rates.  It will include the maximum date with each rate, but that doesn't help (if anything, it makes things more confusing, since all of the rates now have the same date).  I think you need another level.  At the bottom level, find the maximum date, then find the rate for that date, then do the average.


 Also, FWIW, in your query and angelIII's, the ")" should not be at the end of the second line.

 James
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LVL 101

Expert Comment

by:mlmcc
ID: 38847002
YOu are right.  Need to check for max date in the query.

mlmcc
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