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Software Engineer Average Salary in South Africa 2020

How much money does a Software Engineer make in South Africa?


Average Monthly Salary
30,800 ZAR
( 370,000 ZAR yearly)

LOW
15,100
ZAR
AVERAGE
30,800
ZAR
HIGH
48,100
ZAR

A person working as a Software Engineer in South Africa typically earns around 30,800 ZAR per month. Salaries range from 15,100 ZAR (lowest) to 48,100 ZAR (highest).

This is the average monthly salary including housing, transport, and other benefits. Software Engineer salaries vary drastically based on experience, skills, gender, or location. Below you will find a detailed breakdown based on many different criteria.

Software Engineer Salary Distribution in South Africa

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

  • Salary Range

    Software Engineer salaries in South Africa range from 15,100 ZAR per month (minimum salary) to 48,100 ZAR per month (maximum salary).

  • Median Salary

    The median salary is 31,400 ZAR per month, which means that half (50%) of people working as Software Engineer(s) are earning less than 31,400 ZAR while the other half are earning more than 31,400 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 Software Engineer(s) are earning less than 20,900 ZAR while 75% of them are earning more than 20,900 ZAR. Also from the diagram, 75% of Software Engineer(s) are earning less than 40,600 ZAR while 25% are earning more than 40,600 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

Software Engineer Salary Comparison by Years of Experience

How does experience and age affect your pay?

Salary comparison by years of experience monthly South Africa Software Engineer
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The experience level is the most important factor in determining the salary. Naturally the more years of experience the higher your wage. We broke down Software Engineer salaries by experience level and this is what we found.

A Software Engineer with less than two years of experience makes approximately 17,900 ZAR per month.

While someone with an experience level between two and five years is expected to earn 23,000 ZAR per month, 29% more than someone with less than two year's experience.

Moving forward, an experience level between five and ten years lands a salary of 31,800 ZAR per month, 38% more than someone with two to five years of experience.

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.

Additionally, Software Engineer(s) whose expertise span anywhere between ten and fifteen years get a salary equivalent to 39,400 ZAR per month, 24% more than someone with five to ten years of experience.

If the experience level is between fifteen and twenty years, then the expected wage is 42,200 ZAR per month, 7% more than someone with ten to fifteen years of experience.

Lastly, employees with more than twenty years of professional experience get a salary of 45,000 ZAR per month, 7% more than people with fifteen to twenty years of experience.


Software Engineer average salary change by experience in South Africa

0 - 2 Years
17,900 ZAR
2 - 5 Years+29%
23,000 ZAR
5 - 10 Years+38%
31,800 ZAR
10 - 15 Years+24%
39,400 ZAR
15 - 20 Years+7%
42,200 ZAR
20+ Years+7%
45,000 ZAR
Percentage increase and decrease are relative to the previous value

Typical Salary Progress for Most Careers

Salary Comparison By Experience Level
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Software Engineer Salary Comparison By Education

How do education levels affect salaries?

Displayed below is the average salary difference between different Software Engineer(s) who have the same experience but different education levels.

Salary comparison by education level monthly South Africa Software Engineer
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We all know that higher education equals a bigger salary, but how much more money can a degree add to your income? We broke down Software Engineer salaries by education level in order to make a comparison.

When the education level is Certificate or Diploma, the average salary of a Software Engineer is 23,000 ZAR per month.

While someone with a Bachelor's Degree gets a salary of 30,900 ZAR per month, 34% more than someone having a Certificate or Diploma degree.

A Master's Degree gets its holder an average salary of 47,400 ZAR per month, 53% more than someone with a Bachelor's Degree.


Software Engineer average salary difference by education level in South Africa

Certificate or Diploma
23,000 ZAR
Bachelor's Degree+34%
30,900 ZAR
Master's Degree+53%
47,400 ZAR
Percentage increase and decrease are relative to the previous value

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 the thoery. The average increase in compensation while changing jobs is approximately 10% more than the customary salary increment.

If you can afford the costs of higher education, the return on investment is definitely worth it. You should be able to recover the costs in roughly a year or so.


Typical Salary Difference by Education for Most Careers

Salary Comparison By Education Level
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Software Engineer Salary Comparison By Gender

Salary comparison by gender monthly South Africa Software Engineer
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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 Software Engineer employees in South Africa earn 11% more than their female counterparts on average.

Female
29,000 ZAR
Male+11%
32,100 ZAR
Percentage increase and decrease are relative to the previous value

Salary Comparison By Gender in South Africa for all Careers

Salary comparison by gender monthly South Africa
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Software Engineer Average Annual Salary Increment Percentage in South Africa

How much are annual salary increments in South Africa for Software Engineer(s)? How often do employees get salary raises?

Software Engineer

Software Engineer(s) in South Africa are likely to observe a salary increase of approximately 12% every 18 months. The national average annual increment for all professions combined is 8% granted to employees every 18 months.

Annual Salary Increment Rate South Africa Software Engineer
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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.

South Africa / All Professions

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 2019

Banking
3%
Energy
6%
Information Technology
9%
Healthcare
3%
Travel
6%
Construction
9%
Education
3%

Listed above are the average annual increase rates for each industry in South Africa for the year 2019. 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.


Worldwide Salary Raises: All Countries and All Jobs

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Software Engineer Bonus and Incentive Rates in South Africa

How much and how often are bonuses being awarded?Annual Salary Bonus Rate South Africa Software Engineer
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A Software Engineer is considered to be a moderate bonus-based job due to the generally limited involvement in direct revenue generation, with exceptions of course. The people who get the highest bonuses are usually somehow involved in the revenue generation cycle.

45% of surveyed staff reported that they haven't received any bonuses or incentives in the previous year while 55% said that they received at least one form of monetary bonus.

Those who got bonuses reported rates ranging from 3% to 6% of their annual salary.

Received Bonus
55%
No Bonus
45%

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.


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.

Example:
A graphics designer working for a graphics designing company.

Example:
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.

Government vs Private Sector Salary Comparison

Public vs private sector salaries monthly South Africa
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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
30,300 ZAR
Public Sector+7%
32,300 ZAR
Percentage increase and decrease are relative to the previous value

Software Engineer 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 Software Engineer 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.

Software Engineer VS Other Jobs

Salary Comparison Between Software Engineer and Information Technology monthly South Africa
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The average salary for Software Engineer is 5% less than that of Data Analysis. Also, Data Analysis salaries are 3% more than those of Information Technology.

Salary comparison with similar jobs

Job TitleAverage Salary
Business Intelligence Analyst34,800 ZAR+13%
Business Systems Analyst28,300 ZAR-8%
Data Quality Analyst31,700 ZAR+3%
Director of Application Development45,300 ZAR+47%
Disaster Recovery Analyst29,500 ZAR-4%
Enterprise Infrastructure Architect40,000 ZAR+30%
ERP Analyst33,200 ZAR+8%
Functional Analyst33,800 ZAR+10%
Information Technology Training Analyst31,000 ZAR+1%
OPS Manager44,200 ZAR+43%
Reporting Analyst30,000 ZAR-3%
Salesforce Administrator31,200 ZAR+1%
SOA Analyst29,600 ZAR-4%
Software Analyst30,800 ZAR-0%
Software Architect30,400 ZAR-1%
Software Engineer30,800 ZAR-0%
Solutions Architect42,800 ZAR+39%
Systems Analyst30,100 ZAR-2%
Systems Architect30,900 ZAR+0%
Technical Analyst27,400 ZAR-11%
Technology Business Analyst31,400 ZAR+2%

Salary Comparison By City

CityAverage Salary
Bloemfontein28,200 ZAR
Cape Town33,200 ZAR
Durban32,900 ZAR
Johannesburg32,800 ZAR
Port Elizabeth31,100 ZAR
Pretoria30,100 ZAR
41075 - 24

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