IT salaries in South Africa vs Australia

Jamie McKane

MyBroadband Journalist
Staff member
Super Moderator
Joined
Mar 2, 2016
Messages
5,412
IT salaries in South Africa vs Australia

South Africa is suffering a massive brain drain, with skilled professionals constantly leaving to search for better opportunities overseas.

This problem cuts across racial lines, as while emigration was associated with white professionals a few years ago, the number of black professionals leaving South Africa now exceeds white emigrants.
 

ToxicBunny

Honorary Master
Joined
Apr 8, 2006
Messages
87,116
So according to the BMI Australia is more than 2x as expensive to live in as here,

and the salaries are around 2x higher on a currency conversion basis... so almost a like for like then in some ways...
 

Nemus

Expert Member
Joined
Oct 12, 2012
Messages
1,114
Those figures for SA do not correspond with the last article which showed average salaries for IT in SEO and Private sectors.
 

whatwhat

Executive Member
Joined
Jun 1, 2009
Messages
6,106
Those figures for SA seem extremely low, therefore I wouldn't be inclined to trust the figures for Australia either...
Australia has a pretty flat salary structure, the guy fixing your toilet is not getting much less than the average GM/CEO.

Have a lot of friends that moved there, and they need a 2 person income to get to a similar standard of living as what they had in SA with 1 income.
 

Mike Hoxbig

Honorary Master
Joined
Apr 25, 2010
Messages
35,498
Have a lot of friends that moved there, and they need a 2 person income to get to a similar standard of living as what they had in SA with 1 income.
With myself and the wife it's the opposite somehow.

We need 2 incomes in SA due to the double-tax of paying for stuff privately that should be covered by our taxes.

Ran the calculator on on NZ Immigration and even though it's just an estimate, we'd be able to manage on my income alone...
 

ToxicBunny

Honorary Master
Joined
Apr 8, 2006
Messages
87,116
With myself and the wife it's the opposite somehow.

We need 2 incomes in SA due to the double-tax of paying for stuff privately that should be covered by our taxes.

Ran the calculator on on NZ Immigration and even though it's just an estimate, we'd be able to manage on my income alone...
And thats the kicker that makes a comparison almost impossible in my opinion....

There are things you pay for here, that you don't have to pay for in places like NZ/Aus etc...
 

Gaz{M}

Executive Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2005
Messages
6,054
I could take a 30% pay cut in rand terms and have the same "take home" pay in the UK. This is due to all the services my UK tax would provide, that I currently do not enjoy, but still pay twice for (medical, school, security,transport etc.).

The only major challenge when living in another country is you have to get used to a tiny, old house, for a lot more money than in SA. This is probably the only real sacrifice, if the weather doesn't bother you too much.
 

zippy

Executive Member
Joined
May 31, 2005
Messages
9,891
I could take a 30% pay cut in rand terms and have the same "take home" pay in the UK. This is due to all the services my UK tax would provide, that I currently do not enjoy, but still pay twice for (medical, school, security,transport etc.).

The only major challenge when living in another country is you have to get used to a tiny, old house, for a lot more money than in SA. This is probably the only real sacrifice, if the weather doesn't bother you too much.
The high cost of property overseas compared to SA is somewhat compensated for by the lower mortgage rates overseas. Not to mention that your security costs are much much lower overseas. Cost of security should be factored into property costs.
 

Gaz{M}

Executive Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2005
Messages
6,054
True, I forgot about the mortgage rates, in many cases below 1%! So you can effectively afford a house that is 3 times more expensive on the same repayment as in SA.

But in general, you will have to take a knock in house size and age and perhaps location.
 

Mike Hoxbig

Honorary Master
Joined
Apr 25, 2010
Messages
35,498
But in general, you will have to take a knock in house size and age and perhaps location.
Even that's not such a big issue when you have reliable public transport. You can use the commute time to still be productive.

The only problem you face with location overseas is trying to get into a suburb with the best public schools to get your kids into, not central to shopping centres and work as it is here in SA...
 

cguy

Executive Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2013
Messages
5,554
To be frank, wrt these rubbish PayScale numbers they use, I think the reactions are roughly:

South Africans: “Kak, bru, the average is at least 2x that.”
Australians/NZ: “Bloody BS, mate, the average is at least 3x that.”
English: “Bollocks, at least 4x that”
USA: “It’s at least 6x that - let’s make surveys great again”
 

GhostSixFour

Mafia Addict
Joined
Nov 9, 2009
Messages
13,133
Even that's not such a big issue when you have reliable public transport. You can use the commute time to still be productive.

The only problem you face with location overseas is trying to get into a suburb with the best public schools to get your kids into, not central to shopping centres and work as it is here in SA...
I tried this before I got a motorcycle - thought maybe it is the thought of time going down a drain in traffic that is making me miserable.
We had rains here in JHB and I was on the Gautrain bus for close to 4hours, barring that, you never really get a laptop out and start working, so you end up listening to the same podcasts as you can in your car - maybe you watch some youtube, but that takes pre-planning to download episodes and the like.

Bottom line, your commute won't be productive, don't count on it being. No matter the country.
 

system32

Expert Member
Joined
Dec 29, 2009
Messages
3,138
So according to the BMI Australia is more than 2x as expensive to live in as here,

and the salaries are around 2x higher on a currency conversion basis... so almost a like for like then in some ways...
Murder Rate in OZ 0.94 per 100,000
Murder Rate is ZA 36.4 per 100,000
38.7x more

1581681743495.png
You decide which is better.

EDIT:
Rates from wikipedia
 
Last edited:

elysian

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2008
Messages
950
So according to the BMI Australia is more than 2x as expensive to live in as here,

and the salaries are around 2x higher on a currency conversion basis... so almost a like for like then in some ways...
When I was last in Aus visiting family, about 3 years ago, comparing the cost of things, I also came to the figure of about twice as expensive overall as it is here. Not sure about the salaries, as I was on holiday and not researching, but when I see the kind of things my family members own there, compared to when they were here, it's a way higher standard and they do a lot more fun things.

Properties probably similar as when they were here, but cars, gadgets, services, activities, traveling, etc much better.
 

cguy

Executive Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2013
Messages
5,554
Properties probably similar as when they were here, but cars, gadgets, services, activities, traveling, etc much better.
My experience is that properties in 1st world countries tend to be a lot more expensive, then restaurant/food/groceries are a bit more expensive and then everything else is the same.

Extrapolating, this means that while property is a big part of your expenses, CoL will typically track that of SA (due to increased salary), however, once the property is paid off, or once the salary is large enough that rental becomes a small part of it, the entire experience is radically better.

Specific examples of things that become cheap relative to income: cars, TVs, computers, overseas flights, hotels, food/services in other countries, your struggling elderly parents’ expenses back in South Africa, food/services/travel in current country, kitchen upgrades/appliances, bathroom fixtures, and last but definitely not least: charities. If you want to make a difference where you think it matters, having a currency multiplier is really helpful.
 

krycor

Honorary Master
Joined
Aug 4, 2005
Messages
15,939
Murder Rate in OZ 0.94 per 100,000
Murder Rate is ZA 36.4 per 100,000
38.7x more

View attachment 784384
You decide which is better.
Normalize that for the educated group not living in the ghetto?

Reminds me of the Cpt murder rate & family murder rate.. and then you take out populations & communities you not part of and the picture changes drastically.

Wrt Aus or just about anywhere.. it’s all about opportunity! It’s like playing monopoly with different characters which have varying benefits and disadvantages. In our case if you win the birth lottery you have a high chance of living a more than ok life but can do more if lucky. That side, like most developed countries, ok and just ok. You have to be extraordinary to be more though.
 

cguy

Executive Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2013
Messages
5,554
Normalize that for the educated group not living in the ghetto?

Reminds me of the Cpt murder rate & family murder rate.. and then you take out populations & communities you not part of and the picture changes drastically.

Wrt Aus or just about anywhere.. it’s all about opportunity! It’s like playing monopoly with different characters which have varying benefits and disadvantages. In our case if you win the birth lottery you have a high chance of living a more than ok life but can do more if lucky. That side, like most developed countries, ok and just ok. You have to be extraordinary to be more though.
You are comparing a small selection of one population to a much larger selection of another population. Sure, the top 3% of SA are better off than the median Australian, but a fair comparison would be to look at the top 3% of Australians, who are waaay better off.

Sure, the murder rate for the lucky top 10% of SA who are well off is probably 10x lower. It’s also lower for the lucky top 10% of Australians. Maybe not 10x, but even half of what it is now is far far lower in absolute terms. The “ghetto” as you put it spills over, and of course, many people actually have to live in it.
 
Top