The top salaries for banking and finance professionals in South Africa

Robert Walters recruitment had released its annual salary survey, showing professional salaries across South Africa will increase by 7% on average in 2019.

However, top performing professionals with highly sought-after skill sets can expect to see rises of 10-15%.

“It will be another challenging year for the South African economy in 2019, as the pending election will bring about some level of uncertainty leading foreign firms to take a cautious approach to investing in the country,” said Nic Sephton-Poultney, Robert Walters South Africa MD.

“We expect that organisations will take a careful approach to growth and hiring strategies. Professionals with a combination of strong technical skills and industry experience will remain sought after in the private sector.”

Sephton-Poultney said that top performers will continue to be looked after and can expect a salary increase ranging between 10-15%; other professionals can expect inflationary increases of around 7%.”

“With competition for professionals extremely high, securing top talent will require employers to operate swift hiring processes, as well as offering clearly defined career paths and opportunities to satisfy the needs of employees seeking both reassurance and variety.”

Premiums paid for specialist finance professionals

Demand for top previously disadvantaged talent resulted in salary increases of 15-20% in 2018, said Sephton-Poultney

“Specialists with high levels of technical financial competency, industry knowledge and expertise in data, AI and BI were also able to command premiums,” he said.

“With the finance charter, BBBEE legislation changes and general lack of top EE finance talent and successful EE candidates are being remunerated accordingly and this has increased top end salaries in this category.”

“Regulatory demands that came with IFRS meant that demand was high for strong technical accountants but this was met with an acute candidate shortage.”

Salary increases

The tables below show expected salaries in the banking, finance and legal sectors, based on the salary survey conducted by Robert Walters.

Qualified CA (SA) or CIMA

Role Permanent salary per annum (ZAR)
Finance Director (Large Firm) R1 700 000 – R3 000 000
Chief Financial Officer (JSE Top 200) R2 000 000 – R3 200 000
CFO/FD (SME) R1 400 000 – R2 000 000
Senior Finance Manager R1 000 000 – R1 200 000
Finance Manager R700 000+
Newly-qualified CA (SA) R580 000 – R675 000
CA (SA) (+6 years’ experience) R900 000 – R1 200 000
CA (SA) (+4 years’ experience) R850 000 – R950 000
CA (SA) (+2 years’ experience) R680 000 – R780 000
Audit Manager R700 000 – R1 000 000
Internal Auditor R400,000 – R600 000
Qualified CIMA (3 – 5 years’ experience) R700 000 – R900 000
Qualified CIMA (1 – 3 years’ experience) R550 000 – R750 000

Part-qualified CA (SA) or CIMA

Role Permanent salary per annum (ZAR)
Finance Manager R650 000 – R850 000
Articles (+4 years’ experience) R600 000 – R750 000
Articles (+2 years’ experience) R400 000 – R550 000
Bcom (+4 years’ experience) R350 000 – R600 000
Bcom (+2 years’ experience) R250 000 – R400 000

Taxation/Treasury

Role Permanent salary per annum (ZAR)
Group Tax Manager R1 300 000 – R2 000 000
Tax Manager R700 000 – R1 000 000
Tax Accountant R600 000 – R750 000
Group Treasury Manager R1 200 000 – R1 500 000
Treasury Accountant R600 000 – R700 000

Investment banking and financial services

Role Permanent salary per annum (ZAR)
Corporate Finance CA (3 – 5 years’ experience) R800 000 – R1 200 000
Corporate Finance CA (1 – 3 years’ experience) R650 000 – R850 000
Operations Manager – Global Markets R650 000 – R850 000
Product Controller (CA/CIMA + 2 – 5 years’ experience) R700 000 – R1 000 000
Product Controller (2 – 5 years part-qualified) R500 000 – R700 00
Private Banking Executive (3 years’ experience) R500 000 – R600 000
Research Analyst CA (1 – 2 years’ research + CFA experience) R650 000 – R800 000
Consultant/Advisory – PQ CA (1 – 3 years’ experience) R500 000 – R700 000
Consultant/Advisory – CA/CFA/MBA (3 – 4 years’ experience) R750 000 – R900 000

Accounting/Audit/Tax/Treasury

Role Permanent salary per annum (ZAR)
Qualified CA (4 – 5 years’ experience) R850 000 – R1 000 000
Qualified CA (1 – 3 years’ experience) R650 000 – R800 000
Newly-qualified CA (SA) R580 000 – R675 000
Management Accountant CIMA + Training (3 – 4 years’ experience) R700 000 – R800 000
Accountant – Hons Degree + Articles (PQ CA) R380 000 – R450 000
Business Unit CFO – Investment Banking R1 800 000 – R2 500 000
Business Unit CFO – Retail Banking R1 200 000 – R1 700 000
Business Unit CFO – Insurance R1 300 000 – R2 000 000
Quantitative Analyst/Financial Modelling (3 – 5 years’ exp) R700 000 – R1 000 000
Quantitative Analyst/Financial Modelling (1 – 3 years’ exp) R450 000 – R650 000

Legal – in-house for commerce and industry

Role Permanent salary per annum (ZAR)
10+ years’ PQE R1 400 000+
6 – 10 years’ PQE R900 000 – R1 400 000
3 – 6 years’ PQE R700 000 – R900,000
1 – 3 years’ PQE R500 000 – R700 000

Legal – in-house for financial services

Role Permanent salary per annum (ZAR)
10+ years’ PQE R1 350 000+
6 – 10 years’ PQE R950 000 – R1 350 000
3 – 6 years’ PQE R650 000 – R950 000
1 – 3 years’ PQE R450 000 – R650 000

Legal – private practice

Role Permanent salary per annum (ZAR)
Director (10+ years’ PQE) R2 000 000+
Partner (7 – 10 years’ PQE) R1 400 000 – R1 700 000
Senior Associate (5 – 6 years’ PQE) R800 000 – R1 400 000
Associate (3 – 4 years’ PQE) R720 000 – R800 000
Associate (0 – 2 years’ PQE) R560 000 – R720 000
PQE = Post-Qualified Experience


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The top salaries for banking and finance professionals in South Africa