Here’s how much you can earn in SA’s top-paying jobs in banking, law, tech, and procurement | Business Insider


  • Top-end lawyers and accountants can command salaries of R5 million in South Africa right now.
  • In the financial services space, salaries top out at about R4 million, and in technology the ceiling is at around R3.5 million.
  • But in the technology space, it is possible to earn in the region of R2 million without being a manager.
  • Here are how much jobs in technology, banking, procurement, and other sectors could conceivably pay, according to the latest Michael Page benchmarks.
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Lawyers and accountants at the top of their field in South Africa are likely to earn the biggest salaries, but certain developers and analysts working in the technology space can make nearly R2 million per year without the responsibility of managing other people.

By contrast, factory managers can expect to top out at around R1.7 million per year.

The relatively high salaries in the technology space are partially explained by international demand, says Paul Newman, operating director of international recruitment company Michael Page, in a foreword to its “South Africa Salary Guide and Hiring Insights 2023” report released on Monday.

“Various industries are open to adopting a work from anywhere approach should they’re operations allow for such an arrangement; however, we’ve seen the biggest interest from the technology sector. South Africa appears to be high on the priority list due to time zones, language, available resources, and cost, which creates a challenge for local employers competing for the same talent.”

Michael Page captures details from job advertisements and placements throughout the year, which is “supplemented with insights from our consultants validated by their interactions with employers and job applicants in the region” to come up with a salary benchmark it presents as a guide both those hiring and those with in-demand skills.

We have extracted the top-end numbers in the benchmark scale it creates in this way, to compare the industries it follows.

That doesn’t mean there aren’t people earning more for the same job – and there are certainly people earning a lot less in such roles. But the upper-end numbers represent a rough guide to what a top-tier candidate could conceivably ask for, without being laughed out of the building.

Here are the top-end annual salaries you can earn in the top-paying jobs in sales, engineering, finance, and other fields in South Africa, according to data from Michael Page South Africa.

Technology: R3.5 million

Chief information officers (CIOs) can command up to R3.5 million, Michael Page says, with chief technology officers (CTOs) coming in at a mere R3 million.

Other top-paying positions were

  • Chief information security officer (CISO): R2.4 million
  • IT director: R2.2 million
  • Head of software development, enterprise architecture, and project management: R2 million

A stand-out job title is that of senior full stack developer, which can earn you R2 million without being in management. A couple of other non-management jobs in IT that can pay up to R1.8 million include front-end, back-end, and CRM developers, as well as business analysts.

Sales and marketing: R2.8 million

In the business-to-consumer space, marketing pays a little better than sales, Michael Page’s numbers show, with a chief marketing officer (CMO) earning up to R2.8 million, with a general manager of sales can expect only R2.6 million.

But that evens out in business-to-business sales, where a general sales manager can also make up to R2.8 million.

Other top-paying jobs in sales and marketing were

  • VP of sales: R2.7 million
  • Head of marketing: R2.5 million
  • Country manager for sales: R2.4 million

Procurement and supply chain: R3.8 million

A vice president in charge of the supply chain can be a clear winner in the procurement space, with a salary of up to R3.8 million per year. The next job title comes in a full million rand per year less.

Other high-salary jobs in the procurement and supply-chain space are

  • VP of procurement, or supply chain/logistics director: R2.8 million
  • Procurement director: R2.2 million

Legal: R5 million and up

A senior salaried partner at a top legal practice in South Africa can expect to make upwards of R5 million, according to Michael Page’s numbers.

The other big-salary jobs in the legal space are

  • In-house head of legal or general counsel: R3.5 million
  • Chief compliance officer: R2.5 million
  • Group company secretary: R2.2 million

Finance and accounting: R5 million 

A group or regional chief financial officer is likely to be the top earner in the finance space, at an annual salary of R5 million.

Other high-end finance-function salaries include

  • Finance director: R3.5 million
  • Group tax director: R2.7 million
  • Chief audit officer: R2.4 million

Engineering and manufacturing: R2.4 million

A manufacturing director can make as much as R2.4 million, says Michael Page.

Other richly-paid job titles in that space are

  • Research and development director: R1.9 million
  • Factory manager or regulatory affairs director: R1.7 million

Banking and financial services: R4 million

The top earners in the financial-services sector are two types of managing directors, those in private equity and their peers in investment banking.

But a long list of job titles come in at a not-paltry R3 million per year, including

  • Chief operating officers of funds
  • Managing directors at insurance companies
  • Chief compliance and chief risk officers
  • Senior directors in private equity firms or at investment banks
  • Heads of corporate or wholesale banking.

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