South Africa salaries: the gap between Joburg vs Cape Town vs Durban

CareerJunction has published its latest salary review for the end of the year 2017, showing what people earn in 116 jobs across 10 different categories in South Africa.

As part of its data processing, the jobs portal also provides a general overview of salary variation differences across South Africa’s three major economic provinces, namely Gauteng, the Western Cape and KwaZulu Natal.

These provinces cover the three major metros (Joburg, Cape Town and Durban) which account for the bulk of South Africa’s economic activity.

In the six months between salary reports, there have been some shifts for regional salaries across different categories – though the general trend has stayed the same: Gauteng remains the highest paying province for most job categories, while KZN stays the lowest-paying.

One of the bigger shifts seen is the Western Cape’s rise to be the generally higher-paying province when it comes to the ICT sector.

In the mid-year review, both Gauteng and the Western Cape were paying around 1.5% higher than the national average for ICT jobs – but in November, this has shifted to 4% higher for Gauteng and 6.5% higher for the Western Cape.

On the flip side, the Western Cape’s salary offers for finance jobs has dropped significantly – from 14.5% lower than national average in the mid-year review, to 22% lower by November.

Here, KZN has improved salary offers, from 11% less than average, to only 5% less than average in November.

The tables below outline the average salaries offered for all jobs across the 10 categories assessed by CareerJunction. The salary values represent the average maximum for ‘intermediate’ employees.

For a detailed look at the range for starting and senior salaries, check out BusinessTech’s previous coverage.


Read: South African salaries in 2017: what people earn right now


Here’s how much you can expect to get paid in Joburg, Cape Town and Durban:

Figures have been rounded.

Architecture and Engineering

Job GP Salary WC Salary KZN Salary
Regional Variation +3.0% -5.5% -14.0%
Architectural Draughting R28 220 R25 890 R23 560
Architecture R34 505 R31 660 R28 810
Automotive Engineering R32 190 R29 530 R26 875
Chemical Engineering R46 930 R43 060 R39 190
Civil/Structural Engineering R47 970 R44 010 R40 055
Electrical Engineering R43 610 R40 010 R36 415
Electronic Engineering R40 480 R37 140 R33 800
Industrial Engineering R43 735 R40 130 R36 520
Environmental Engineering R51 240 R47 010 R42 785
Mechanical Engineering R46 635 R42 790 R38 940
Engineering Technician R25 620 R23 510 R21 390
Engineering Draughtsman R26 640 R24 440 R22 240

Building and Construction 

Job GP Salary WC Salary KZN Salary
Regional Variation +1.5% -17.5% -11.0%
Quantity Surveying R41 140 R33 440 R36 070
Consulting Engineering R39 690 R32 260 R34 805
Building Project Management R36 330 R29 530 R31 860
Metal, Iron, Steel and Rebar Works R23 940 R19 460 R20 990
Electrician R22 155 R18 010 R19 430
Building Foreman R31 295 R25 440 R27 440
Construction/Demolition Operator R31 295 R25 440 R27 440
Structural Engineering R46 090 R37 465 R40 420
Civil Engineering R54 870 R44 600 R48 110

Warehousing and Logistics 

Job GP Salary WC Salary KZN Salary
Regional Variation +2.5% -5.5% -24.0%
Warehouse Operations R15 440 R14 230 R11 450
Dispatch and Receiving R12 180 R11 230 R9 030
Packing and Packaging R7 690 R7 090 R5 700
Route Management and Control R21 650 R19 960 R16 055
Distribution/Courier Services R12 840 R11 840 R9 520
Air, Land and Sea Freight R16 990 R15 660 R12 600
Logistics Management R45 930 R42 340 R34 050

Information and Communication Technology 

Job GP Salary WC Salary KZN Salary
Regional Variation +4.0% +6.5% -21.5%
Software Development R45 260 R46 350 R34 170
Technical and Business Architecture R63 480 R65 010 R47 920
Business Analyst R50 490 R51 710 R38 110
Systems Analyst R44 120 R45 180 R33 300
Database Design, Development and Administration R37 930 R38 840 R28 630
Systems and Network Administration R37 615 R38 520 R28 390
UX and GUI Design R44 400 R45 470 R33 520
IT Project Admin and Management R52 460 R53 720 R39 600
Data Analysis and Data Warehousing R42 080 R43 090 R31 760
Network Planning, Design and Installation R29 240 R29 950 R22 070
Telecoms Technical Product Specialst R28 540 R29 230 R21 540
IT Management R61 870 R63 360 R46 700

Medical and Health 

Job GP Salary WC Salary KZN Salary
Regional Variation +2.0% -9.0% +3.5%
Dietician/Nutrition R28 730 R25 630 R29 150
Nursing/Professional Care R23 120 R20 630 R23 460
Medical Assistance and Support R27 900 R24 890 R28 310
Therapist R34 130 R30 450 R34 630
Pharmacist R43 060 R38 420 R43 690
Optometrist R31 620 R28 210 R32 085
Hospital Management R46 880 R41 820 R47 570

Finance 

Job GP Salary WC Salary KZN Salary
Regional Variation +6.5% -22.0% -5.0%
Accounts Payable and Receivable R24 940 R18 265 R22 250
Bookkeeping R20 360 R14 910 R18 160
Financial/Project Accounting R43 130 R31 590 R38 475
Cost and Management Accounting R53 550 R39 220 R47 770
Chartered Accounting R57 940 R42 435 R51 680
Internal Auditing R35 880 R26 280 R32 010
Payroll and Wages R21 485 R15 740 R19 165
Purchasing and Procurement R30 540 R22 360 R27 240
Taxation R43 460 R31 830 R38 770
Corporate Lending R46 140 R33 790 R41 160
Credit Management R31 120 R22 790 R27 760
Debt, Rent/Cash Collection R17 600 R12 890 R15 700
Financial Analysis R54 130 R39 640 R48 280
Risk Management R38 380 R28 110 R34 240
Investment Management R38 520 R28 210 R34 360
Asset Management R43 750 R32 040 R39 020
Portfolio Management R36 870 R27 000 R32 890
Treasury Management R39 090 R28 630 R34 870
Actuarial Management and Administration R41 770 R30 595 R37 260
Risk Assessment R32 710 R23 955 R29 175
Claims Assessment R24 950 R18 275 R22 260
Financial Management R67 820 R49 670 R60 500

Marketing 

Job GP Salary WC Salary KZN Salary
Regional Variation +9.5% -10.5% -15.5%
Brand Management R27 440 R22 430 R21 170
Product Management R36 620 R29 930 R28 260
Market Research and Analysis R32 770 R26 780 R25 285
Advertising R20 785 R16 990 R16 040
Communications and Public Relations R28 400 R23 220 R21 920
Events Coordination and Planning R24 550 R20 060 R18 940
Marketing Assistance R13 540 R11 070 R10 450
Marketing Coordinator R23 840 R19 485 R18 400
Marketing Management R44 900 R36 700 R34 650

Sales 

Job GP Salary WC Salary KZN Salary
Regional Variation +3.5% -2.5% -25.5%
Real Estate and Property Agent R16 800 R15 820 R12 090
Travel Agent R19 450 R18 325 R14 000
Short-term Life and Medical Insurance Broking R23 875 R22 490 R17 190
Commodities and Financial Service Agent R25 750 R24 260 R18 540
Representative and Sales Consulting R20 805 R19 600 R14 975
Account Management R23 900 R22 520 R17 205
Telesales and Telemarketing R15 180 R14 300 R10 930
Merchandiser, Product Promo and Demo R13 600 R12 810 R9 790
Retail R15 890 R14 970 R11 440
Wholesale R17 805 R16 770 R12 820
Trade Broking R23 360 R22 010 R16 820
Sales Management R45 885 R43 225 R33 030

Admin, Office and Support 

Job GP Salary WC Salary KZN Salary
Regional Variation +14.0% -6.0% -11.0%
Admin Clerk R16 570 R13 670 R12 940
Personal Assistant R24 490 R20 190 R19 120
Data Capturing R12 690 R10 460 R9 910
Secretary R20 860 R17 200 R16 290
Teller and Cashier R11 070 R9 130 R8 640
Reservation and Ticketing Clerk R16 710 R13 780 R13 050
Switchboard and Reception R13 770 R11 350 R10 750
Client and Customer Support R16 660 R13 730 R13 000
Call Centre Operator R18 100 R14 920 R14 130
Call Centre Supervisor R17 665 R14 570 R13 790
Human Resource officer R26 740 R22 050 R20 875
Health Safety and Environment R30 370 R25 040 R23 710
Office Management R36 720 R30 280 R28 670

Manufacturing and Assembly 

Job GP Salary WC Salary KZN Salary
Regional Variation +0.5% -2.0% -2.5%
Materials Control R24 040 R23 440 R23 320
Artisan R23 860 R23 270 R23 150
Metallurgy and Boiler Making R23 530 R22 940 R22 830
Plastic Works R28 560 R27 850 R27 710
Printing R18 880 R18 410 R18 320
Tool and Die Making R31 990 R31 190 R31 030
Assembly and Fabricating R24 400 R23 800 R23 680
Machinist R22 495 R21 935 R21 820
Plant and System Operator R16 580 R16 170 R16 090
Plant and Production Control R21 570 R21 030 R20 930
Process Control R25 190 R24 560 R24 440
Quality Control R21 850 R21 310 R21 200
Plant Management R62 620 R61 060 R60 750

Read: The salary gaps between Joburg, Cape Town and Durban are shrinking

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South Africa salaries: the gap between Joburg vs Cape Town vs Durban