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Average Salary in South Africa 2023

How much money does a person working in South Africa make?

Average Monthly Salary
31,100 ZAR
( 374,000 ZAR yearly)


A person working in South Africa typically earns around 31,100 ZAR per month. Salaries range from 7,880 ZAR (lowest average) to 139,000 ZAR (highest average, actual maximum salary is higher).

This is the average monthly salary including housing, transport, and other benefits. Salaries vary drastically between different careers. If you are interested in the salary of a particular job, see below for salaries for specific job titles.

Distribution of Salaries in South Africa

Median and salary distribution monthly South Africa
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The median, the maximum, the minimum, and the range

  • Salary Range

    Salaries in South Africa range from 7,880 ZAR per month (minimum salary) to 139,000 ZAR per month (maximum average salary, actual maximum is higher).

  • Median Salary

    The median salary is 29,900 ZAR per month, which means that half (50%) of the population are earning less than 29,900 ZAR while the other half are earning more than 29,900 ZAR. The median represents the middle salary value. Generally speaking, you would want to be on the right side of the graph with the group earning more than the median salary.

  • Percentiles

    Closely related to the median are two values: the 25th and the 75th percentiles. Reading from the salary distribution diagram, 25% of the population are earning less than 17,000 ZAR while 75% of them are earning more than 17,000 ZAR. Also from the diagram, 75% of the population are earning less than 81,100 ZAR while 25% are earning more than 81,100 ZAR.

What is the difference between the median and the average salary?

Both are indicators. If your salary is higher than both of the average and the median then you are doing very well. If your salary is lower than both, then many people are earning more than you and there is plenty of room for improvement. If your wage is between the average and the median, then things can be a bit complicated. We wrote a guide to explain all about the different scenarios. How to compare your salary

Salary Comparison by Years of Experience

How does a person's salary progress over time?

Salary Comparison By Experience Level
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The experience level is the most important factor in determining the salary. Naturally the more years of experience the higher the wage.

Generally speaking, employees having experience from two to five years earn on average 32% more than freshers and juniors across all industries and disciplines.

Professionals with experience of more than five years tend to earn on average 36% more than those with five years or less of work experience.

Change in salary based on experience varies drastically from one location to another and depends hugely on the career field as well. The data displayed here is the combined average of many different jobs. To view accurate figures, choose a specific job title.

As you hit the ten years mark, the salary increases by 21% and an additional 14% for those who have crossed the 15 years mark.

Those figures are presented as guidelines only. The numbers become more significant if you consider one job title at a time.

On average, a person's salary doubles their starting salary by the time they cross the 10 years* experience mark.
* Based on the average change in salary over time. Salary variations differ from person to person.

Salary Comparison By Education

How does the education level affect your salary?

Salary Comparison By Education
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It is well known that higher education equals a bigger salary, but how much more money can a degree add to your income? We compared the salaries of professionals at the same level but with different college degrees levels across many jobs, below are our findings.

Change in salary based on education varies drastically from one location to another and depends hugely on the career field as well. The data displayed here is the combined average of multiple jobs. To view accurate figures, choose a specific job title.

Workers with a certificate or diploma earn on average 17% more than their peers who only reached the high school level.

Employees who earned a Bachelor's Degree earn 24% more than those who only managed to attain a cerificate or diploma.

Professionals who attained a Master's Degree are awarded salaries that are 29% more than those with a Bachelor's Degree.

Finally, PhD holders earn 23% more than Master's Degree holders on average while doing the same job.

Is a Master's degree or an MBA worth it? Should you pursue higher education?

A Master's degree program or any post-graduate program in South Africa costs anywhere from 156,000 Rand(s) to 467,000 Rand(s) and lasts approximately two years. That is quite an investment.

You can't really expect any salary increases during the study period, assuming you already have a job. In most cases, a salary review is conducted once education is completed and the degree has been attained.

Many people pursue higher education as a tactic to switch into a higher paying job. The numbers seem to support this tactic. The average increase in compensation while changing jobs is approximately 10% more than the customary salary increment.

The decision really depends on your situation and experience among many other factors. Putting all variables aside, if you can afford the costs of higher education then the return on investment is definitely worth it. You should be able to recover the costs in roughly a year or so.

Salary Comparison By Gender

Salary comparison by gender monthly South Africa
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Though gender should not have an effect on pay, in reality, it does. So who gets paid more: men or women? Male employees in South Africa earn 8% more than their female counterparts on avergae across all sectors.

32,500 ZAR
30,100 ZAR
Percentage increase and decrease are relative to the previous value

Average Annual Salary Increment Percentage in South Africa

How much are annual salary increments in South Africa? How often do employees get salary raises?

South Africa

Employees in South Africa are likely to observe a salary increase of approximately 8% every 18 months.

Annual Salary Increment Rate South Africa
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The figures provided here are averages of numbers. Those figures should be taken as general guidelines. Salary increments will vary from person to person and depend on many factors, but your performance and contribution to the success of the organization remain the most important factors in determining how much and how often you will be granted a raise.

The term 'Annual Salary Increase' usually refers to the increase in 12 calendar month period, but because it is rarely that people get their salaries reviewed exactly on the one year mark, it is more meaningful to know the frequency and the rate at the time of the increase.

How to calculate the salary increment percentage?

The annual salary Increase in a calendar year (12 months) can be easily calculated as follows: Annual Salary Increase = Increase Rate x 12 ÷ Increase Frequency

The average salary increase in one year (12 months) in South Africa is 5%.

Annual Increment Rate By Industry 2022

Information Technology

Listed above are the average annual increase rates for each industry in South Africa for the year 2022. Companies within thriving industries tend to provide higher and more frequent raises. Exceptions do exist, but generally speaking, the situation of any company is closely related to the economic situation in the country or region. These figures tend to change frequently.

Average Salary Increase Rate by Experience Level

Junoir Level
3% - 5%
6% - 9%
Senior Level
10% - 15%
Top Management
15% - 20%

The difference in increment rates is somehow justified because employers put more effort to retain more experienced staff since they are harder to acquire than less experienced ones.

Worldwide Salary Raises: All Countries and All Jobs

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Bonus and Incentive Rates in South Africa

How much and how often are bonuses being awarded?Annual Salary Bonus Rate South Africa
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50% of surveyed staff in South Africa reported that they haven't received any bonuses or incentives in the previous year while 50% said that they received at least one form of monetary bonus.

Those who got bonuses reported rates ranging from 3% to 5% of their annual salary.

Received Bonus
No Bonus

Types of Bonuses Considered

Individual Performance-Based Bonuses

The most standard form of bonus where the employee is awarded based on their exceptional performance.

Company Performance Bonuses

Occasionally, some companies like to celebrate excess earnings and profits with their staff collectively in the form of bonuses that are granted to everyone. The amount of the bonus will probably be different from person to person depending on their role within the organization.

Goal-Based Bonuses

Granted upon achieving an important goal or milestone.

Holiday / End of Year Bonuses

These types of bonuses are given without a reason and usually resemble an appreciation token.

Bonuses Are Not Commissions!

People tend to confuse bonuses with commissions. A commission is a prefixed rate at which someone gets paid for items sold or deals completed while a bonus is in most cases arbitrary and unplanned.

Bonus Rates Comparison by Career Field

Business Development
Marketing / Advertising
Information Technology
Customer Service
Human Resources

What makes a position worthy of good bonuses and a high salary?

The main two types of jobs

Revenue GeneratorsSupporting Cast

Employees that are directly involved in generating revenue or profit for the organization. Their field of expertise usually matches the type of business.

Employees that support and facilitate the work of revenue generators. Their expertise is usually different from that of the core business operations.

A graphics designer working for a graphics designing company.

A graphic designer in the marketing department of a hospital.

Revenue generators usually get more and higher bonuses, higher salaries, and more frequent salary increments. The reason is quite simple: it is easier to quantify your value to the company in monetary terms when you participate in revenue generation.

Try to work for companies where your skills can generate revenue. We can't all generate revenue and that's perfectly fine.

Bonus Comparison by Seniority Level

Top management personnel and senior employees naturally exhibit higher bonus rates and frequencies than juniors. This is very predictable due to the inherent responsibilities of being higher in the hierarchy. People in top positions can easily get double or triple bonus rates than employees down the pyramid.

Salaries for popular jobs

Job TitleAverage Salary
Accounting and Finance
Accountant23,500 ZAR
Accounting Assistant18,400 ZAR
Accounting Manager46,300 ZAR
Bookkeeper14,600 ZAR
Chartered Accountant28,500 ZAR
Corporate Treasurer42,900 ZAR
Financial Analyst39,900 ZAR
Financial Manager61,600 ZAR
Internal Auditor29,700 ZAR

Administration / Reception / Secretarial
Administrative Assistant16,400 ZAR
Office Manager27,600 ZAR
Receptionist15,300 ZAR
Secretary14,300 ZAR

Advertising / Grapic Design / Events
Art Director31,900 ZAR
Creative Director32,100 ZAR
Graphic Designer20,500 ZAR
Photographer18,100 ZAR

Airlines / Aviation / Aerospace / Defense
Aerospace Engineer41,900 ZAR
Air Traffic Controller36,000 ZAR
Flight Attendant23,000 ZAR
Pilot57,700 ZAR

Architect40,400 ZAR
CAD Drafter17,200 ZAR

Mechanic11,700 ZAR
Service Advisor21,500 ZAR

Bank Branch Manager61,200 ZAR
Teller11,900 ZAR

Teacher24,100 ZAR
Translator28,500 ZAR

Business Planning
Business Analyst39,700 ZAR
Business Development Manager51,100 ZAR
Project Manager41,000 ZAR

Care Giving and Child Care
Nanny13,600 ZAR
Nursery Teacher12,200 ZAR

Construction / Building / Installation
Civil Engineer30,700 ZAR
Construction Project Manager55,700 ZAR
Health and Safety Officer14,500 ZAR

Customer Service and Call Center
Call Center Representative11,700 ZAR
Customer Service Manager42,600 ZAR
Customer Service Representative11,800 ZAR

Civil Engineer29,900 ZAR
Electrical Engineer32,000 ZAR
Engineer30,800 ZAR
Mechanical Engineer31,500 ZAR

Executive and Management
Chief Executive Officer70,100 ZAR
Chief Financial Officer67,600 ZAR
General Manager55,200 ZAR
Project Manager35,700 ZAR

Food / Hospitality / Tourism / Catering
Chef21,000 ZAR
Executive Chef24,400 ZAR
Hotel Manager55,800 ZAR
Receptionist12,500 ZAR
Travel Agent19,800 ZAR
Waiter / Waitress9,890 ZAR

Health and Medical
Dentist75,100 ZAR
Dietitian61,300 ZAR
Laboratory Technician25,000 ZAR
Nurse25,700 ZAR

Human Resources
Human Resources Manager48,800 ZAR
Human Resources Officer19,600 ZAR

Information Technology
Computer Technician24,700 ZAR
Database Administrator30,900 ZAR
Developer / Programmer32,700 ZAR
Information Technology Manager54,000 ZAR
Network Engineer29,300 ZAR

Law Enforcement / Security / Fire
Police Officer18,600 ZAR

Attorney61,000 ZAR
Legal Assistant16,400 ZAR

Media / Broadcasting / Arts / Entertainment
Journalist38,300 ZAR

Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology
Biomedical Engineer28,500 ZAR
Pharmacist43,200 ZAR

Sales Retail and Wholesale
Cashier12,400 ZAR
Sales Manager57,400 ZAR
Sales Representative21,600 ZAR

Teaching / Education
Elementary School Teacher21,500 ZAR
Secondary School Teacher26,200 ZAR

Average Hourly Wage in South Africa

180 ZAR per hour

The average hourly wage (pay per hour) in South Africa is 180 ZAR. This means that the average person in South Africa earns approximately 180 ZAR for every worked hour.

Hourly Wage = Annual Salary ÷ ( 52 x 5 x 8 )

The hourly wage is the salary paid in one worked hour. Usually jobs are classified into two categories: salaried jobs and hourly jobs. Salaried jobs pay a fix amount regardless of the hours worked. Hourly jobs pay per worked hour. To convert salary into hourly wage the above formula is used (assuming 5 working days in a week and 8 working hours per day which is the standard for most jobs). The hourly wage calculation may differ slightly depending on the worked hours per week and the annual vacation allowance. The figures mentioned above are good approximations and are considered to be the standard. One major difference between salaried employees and hourly paid employees is overtime eligibility. Salaried employees are usually exempt from overtime as opposed to hourly paid staff.

Salary Comparison By City

CityAverage Salary
Bloemfontein30,200 ZAR
Cape Town36,200 ZAR
Durban34,600 ZAR
Johannesburg33,300 ZAR
Port Elizabeth31,500 ZAR
Pretoria32,700 ZAR

Government vs Private Sector Salary Comparison

Where can you get paid more, working for a private company or for the government? Public sector employees in South Africa earn 7% more than their private sector counterparts on average across all sectors.

Private Sector
30,200 ZAR
Public Sector+7%
32,300 ZAR
Percentage increase and decrease are relative to the previous value

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