Top 30 Highest-Paying Jobs in South Africa for 2024: Where to Find Them and What They Pay

  • High-Earning Careers: Discover the top 20 highest-paying professions in South Africa for 2020.
  • Salary Insights: Get detailed information on salary ranges and job roles that offer lucrative compensation.
  • Career Planning: Use this guide to make informed decisions about your career path and financial future.

most paying jobs and professions

In 2024, the quest for the highest paying jobs in South Africa intensifies as professionals seek positions that not only fulfill their passions but also secure their financial future. Amidst this competitive landscape, several careers stand out due to their lucrative pay packages.

From healthcare to the corporate world, the top 30 highest paying jobs in South Africa per month have seen a significant surge, with professionals in these fields earning between R440,000 and R2.2 million annually. This remarkable salary range is particularly evident in high paying careers in South Africa like Radiation Oncologists, Neurosurgeons, and Orthopedic Surgeons, among others.

However, the financial realm also presents enticing prospects, with the debate on chartered accountant vs actuary salary in South Africa continuing to pique interest. Both professions offer impressive compensation, with chartered accountants pulling in an average of R1,250,000 and actuarial scientists around R720,000.

The IT sector, known for its innovative spirit and dynamic nature, boasts some of the highest paying jobs in SA. Positions such as IT Managers and Software Engineers are not only pivotal in today’s digital world but also come with attractive salary packages.

As the South African job market evolves, the exodus of talent to countries like Canada and Australia has prompted a shift in the local employment landscape. This change underscores the importance of not only identifying the highest paying jobs but also understanding which career has the most job opportunities in South Africa.

While the allure of hefty paychecks is undeniable, professionals are encouraged to weigh other factors like job satisfaction and alignment with personal skills and passions. After all, the highest paying job in South Africa is one that brings both financial rewards and personal fulfillment.

Here are the 30 highest-paying jobs in South Africa as of 2024:

  1. Radiation Oncologist
    • Average Salary: R2,260,000.00
    • Qualifications: Medical degree, specialized training in oncology and radiation therapy.
    • Job Outlook: Growing, due to advances in cancer treatment technology.
    • Brief Description: Treats cancer patients using radiation therapy.
    • Skills Needed: Precision, patient care, understanding of oncology and radiation equipment.
  2. Neurosurgeon
    • Average Salary: R1,850,000.00
    • Qualifications: Medical degree, residency in neurosurgery.
    • Job Outlook: Stable, with advances in neurological procedures.
    • Brief Description: Performs surgery on the brain, spine, and nerves.
    • Skills Needed: Manual dexterity, critical thinking, stamina, in-depth knowledge of the nervous system.
  3. Orthopedic Surgeon
    • Average Salary: R1,780,000.00
    • Qualifications: Medical degree, orthopedic residency.
    • Job Outlook: High, due to an aging population and sports injuries.
    • Brief Description: Treats musculoskeletal system issues.
    • Skills Needed: Surgical skills, understanding of musculoskeletal system, patient care.
  4. Otorhinolaryngologist
    • Average Salary: R1,700,000.00
    • Qualifications: Medical degree, specialized training in ear, nose, and throat (ENT).
    • Job Outlook: Stable, essential medical service.
    • Brief Description: Treats conditions of the ear, nose, and throat.
    • Skills Needed: Surgical skills, patient communication, detailed knowledge of ENT.
  5. Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon
    • Average Salary: R1,660,000.00
    • Qualifications: Medical degree, specialized training in plastic surgery.
    • Job Outlook: Growing, both in cosmetic and reconstructive areas.
    • Brief Description: Performs reconstructive and cosmetic surgeries.
    • Skills Needed: Aesthetic sense, surgical skills, empathy.
  6. General Surgeons
    • Average Salary: R1,600,000.00
    • Qualifications: Medical degree, surgical residency.
    • Job Outlook: Stable, surgeons are always in demand.
    • Brief Description: Performs a variety of surgical procedures.
    • Skills Needed: Versatile surgical skills, decision-making, stamina.
  7. Cardiologist
    • Average Salary: R1,510,000.00
    • Qualifications: Medical degree, specialized training in cardiology.
    • Job Outlook: High, due to increasing heart-related issues.
    • Brief Description: Specializes in heart and cardiovascular system.
    • Skills Needed: In-depth knowledge of cardiology, patient care, diagnostic skills.
  8. Anesthesiologist
    • Average Salary: R1,400,000.00
    • Qualifications: Medical degree, specialized training in anesthesiology.
    • Job Outlook: Stable, essential in many surgical procedures.
    • Brief Description: Administers anesthesia, monitors patient during surgery.
    • Skills Needed: Knowledge of anesthetics, attention to detail, patient monitoring.
  9. Urologist
    • Average Salary: R1,300,000.00
    • Qualifications: Medical degree, specialized training in urology.
    • Job Outlook: Stable, with advancements in urological treatments.
    • Brief Description: Treats urinary tract and male reproductive system.
    • Skills Needed: Surgical skills, patient care, knowledge of urology.
  10. Internal Medicine Specialist
    • Average Salary: R1,270,000.00
    • Qualifications: Medical degree, residency in internal medicine.
    • Job Outlook: High, core healthcare service.
    • Brief Description: Diagnoses and treats internal organ diseases.
    • Skills Needed: Broad medical knowledge, diagnostic skills, patient communication.
  11. Chartered Accountant
    • Average Salary: R1,250,000.00
    • Qualifications: Bachelor’s degree in accounting or related field, CA certification.
    • Job Outlook: Stable, essential in business operations.
    • Brief Description: Manages financial accounts, taxation, and auditing.
    • Skills Needed: Financial knowledge, analytical skills, attention to detail.
  12. Dermatologist
    • Average Salary: R1,200,000.00
    • Qualifications: Medical degree, specialized training in dermatology.
    • Job Outlook: Growing, due to skin health awareness.
    • Brief Description: Specializes in skin, hair, nail diseases.
    • Skills Needed: Detailed knowledge of dermatology, patient care, diagnostic skills.
  13. Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
    • Average Salary: R1,185,000.00
    • Qualifications: Varies widely, often includes advanced business degree.
    • Job Outlook: Varies by industry, often competitive.
    • Brief Description: Top executive responsible for overall management.
    • Skills Needed: Leadership, strategic planning, communication.
  14. Chief Financial Officer (CFO)
    • Average Salary: R1,160,000.00
    • Qualifications: Degree in finance/accounting, experience in financial management.
    • Job Outlook: Stable, key role in companies.
    • Brief Description: Oversees financial planning and reporting.
    • Skills Needed: Financial expertise, strategic thinking, leadership.
  15. Financial Director
    • Average Salary: R1,140,000.00
    • Qualifications: Degree in finance/accounting, extensive experience.
    • Job Outlook: Stable, crucial for financial health of organizations.
    • Brief Description: Manages financial operations and strategy.
    • Skills Needed: Financial acumen, management skills, strategic planning.
  16. Gynecologist / Obstetrics
    • Average Salary: R1,120,000.00
    • Qualifications: Medical degree, specialized training in gynecology and obstetrics.
    • Job Outlook: Stable, essential healthcare service.
    • Brief Description: Specializes in female reproductive health, childbirth.
    • Skills Needed: Medical knowledge of women’s health, patient care, surgical skills.
  17. Psychiatrist
    • Average Salary: R1,100,000.00
    • Qualifications: Medical degree, residency in psychiatry.
    • Job Outlook: Growing, with increased focus on mental health.
    • Brief Description: Diagnoses and treats mental health disorders.
    • Skills Needed: Understanding of psychiatry, empathy, communication skills.
  18. Corporate Lawyer
    • Average Salary: R870,000.00
    • Qualifications: Law degree, admission to the bar, corporate law specialization.
    • Job Outlook: Stable, important for business legal matters.
    • Brief Description: Specializes in corporate law, advises businesses.
    • Skills Needed: Legal knowledge, analytical skills, negotiation skills.
  19. Aviation Pilots
    • Average Salary: R820,000.00
    • Qualifications: Pilot training, relevant licenses.
    • Job Outlook: Subject to industry trends, can fluctuate.
    • Brief Description: Operates aircraft, often in commercial or private settings.
    • Skills Needed: Flying skills, navigation, communication, calm under pressure.
  20. Financial Manager
    • Average Salary: R740,000.00
    • Qualifications: Degree in finance/accounting, management experience.
    • Job Outlook: Stable, crucial for organizational financial health.
    • Brief Description: Manages financial planning, reporting, and investment.
    • Skills Needed: Financial expertise, strategic planning, management.
  21. Actuarial Scientist
    • Average Salary: R720,000.00
    • Qualifications: Degree in actuarial science, passing actuarial exams.
    • Job Outlook: Stable, high demand in insurance and finance.
    • Brief Description: Analyzes financial cost of risk and uncertainty.
    • Skills Needed: Mathematical skills, analytical thinking, problem-solving.
  22. Management Consultant
    • Average Salary: R650,000.00
    • Qualifications: Degree in business or related field, experience in consulting.
    • Job Outlook: Growing, as businesses seek efficiency and strategic advice.
    • Brief Description: Advises on business strategy, structure, management, and operations.
    • Skills Needed: Strategic thinking, problem-solving, communication skills.
  23. IT Managers
    • Average Salary: R645,000.00
    • Qualifications: Degree in IT or related field, experience in IT management.
    • Job Outlook: Growing, with the expansion of technology in business.
    • Brief Description: Oversees IT resources, strategy, and staff.
    • Skills Needed: Technical IT knowledge, management skills, strategic planning.
  24. Software Engineer
    • Average Salary: R610,000.00
    • Qualifications: Degree in computer science or related field.
    • Job Outlook: High, due to increasing demand for technology solutions.
    • Brief Description: Designs, develops, tests software applications.
    • Skills Needed: Programming skills, problem-solving, technical knowledge.
  25. Pharmacist
    • Average Salary: R518,000.00
    • Qualifications: Degree in pharmacy, licensure.
    • Job Outlook: Stable, essential healthcare service.
    • Brief Description: Prepares, dispenses medications, advises on drug therapy.
    • Skills Needed: Knowledge of pharmacology, patient communication, attention to detail.
  26. Architect
    • Average Salary: R490,000.00
    • Qualifications: Degree in architecture, licensure.
    • Job Outlook: Subject to construction industry trends.
    • Brief Description: Designs buildings and oversees construction.
    • Skills Needed: Design skills, technical knowledge, creativity.
  27. Petroleum Engineer
    • Average Salary: R409,000.00
    • Qualifications: Degree in petroleum engineering or related field.
    • Job Outlook: Fluctuates with energy market trends.
    • Brief Description: Explores and extracts oil and gas resources.
    • Skills Needed: Engineering knowledge, problem-solving, field experience.
  28. Biomedical Engineers
    • Average Salary: R407,000.00
    • Qualifications: Degree in biomedical engineering or related field.
    • Job Outlook: Growing, with advances in medical technology.
    • Brief Description: Combines engineering principles with medical sciences.
    • Skills Needed: Engineering skills, understanding of biology, innovation.
  29. Industrial Engineer
    • Average Salary: R390,000.00
    • Qualifications: Degree in industrial engineering or related field.
    • Job Outlook: Stable, essential for manufacturing and production efficiency.
    • Brief Description: Improves industrial processes for efficiency and effectiveness.
    • Skills Needed: Engineering knowledge, problem-solving, efficiency analysis.
  30. Air Traffic Controller
    • Average Salary: R432,000.00 (mid-level with 5-9 years of experience)
    • Qualifications: Specialized training, certification.
    • Job Outlook: Stable, essential for aviation safety.
    • Brief Description: Manages aircraft movements on the ground and in the air.
    • Skills Needed: Concentration, decision-making, clear communication.

This list showcases a variety of professions from different industries, which are considered the highest paying jobs in South Africa. Please note that the figures mentioned are based on average annual salaries and may vary depending on individual experience, location, and other factors.


As shown above, there are quite a number of high paying professions you can choose to embark on today. Starting a career that you are passionate about and with a high income is pivotal since there are high chances it could be for a lifetime.

From the list above, which profession would you find more suitable for you to take up as a career?

While a high salary is certainly an important factor when choosing a career, it’s also important to consider the long-term financial stability and security that a career can provide. A great way to secure your future and your family’s is to have a life insurance.

Life insurance can help protect your loved ones financially in the event of your unexpected death, and can also offer additional benefits such as critical illness coverage and income protection.

It’s important to consider the best life insurance options that cater to your profession. There are many life insurance providers out there, each with different options, so be sure to research and compare your options to find the best coverage for your profession.

FAQ for “Top 30 Most Paying Jobs and Professions in South Africa in 2024”

1. Q: What is the purpose of this blog article?

A: The purpose of this article is to provide readers with an updated list of the top 30 highest-paying jobs and professions in South Africa for 2024, based on factors such as average salary, job demand, and career growth potential.

2. Q: How was the data for the top 30 highest-paying jobs collected?

A: The data for this article was compiled from reputable sources such as government statistics, industry reports, and surveys. We also considered factors like regional variations and cost of living to provide a more accurate representation.

3. Q: Do the listed salaries include bonuses and other benefits?

A: The salaries listed in the article are generally base salaries and may not include bonuses or other benefits such as healthcare, retirement plans, and paid time off. Keep in mind that actual compensation packages can vary depending on the company and individual circumstances.

4. Q: How often is the list updated?

A: The list is updated annually to account for changes in job market trends, salary fluctuations, and other factors that may impact the ranking of the highest-paying jobs in South Africa.

5. Q: Are the jobs on this list suitable for everyone?

A: While the jobs listed are high-paying, they may not be suitable for everyone. It’s important to consider factors like personal interests, skills, education, and experience when choosing a career path. The list serves as a starting point for those considering a change in profession or looking to make informed decisions about their careers.

6. Q: Are all the jobs on the list in high demand?

A: While many of the jobs on the list are in high demand due to factors like technological advancements and a growing economy, demand can vary depending on the specific profession and location. The article offers insights into job demand and growth potential to help readers make informed decisions.

7. Q: Do I need a specific degree or certification to qualify for these jobs?

A: Many of the jobs listed in the article require specialized education, training, or certifications. The article provides information about the typical qualifications needed for each job, but it’s important to research specific requirements based on the job and employer.

8. Q: Can I find these high-paying jobs in all regions of South Africa?

A: While some high-paying jobs are available throughout South Africa, there may be regional variations in job availability and salary. Factors such as the local economy, industry presence, and population density can influence the job market in different regions.

9. Q: Is this list exhaustive?

A: While this list covers the top 30 highest-paying jobs in South Africa, it is not an exhaustive list of all high-paying professions. There are numerous other well-paying jobs available in various industries, and it’s essential to explore all your options before making a decision.

10. Q: Can I share this article with my friends or on social media?

A: Yes, you are encouraged to share the article with friends or on social media to help others make informed decisions about their careers and job prospects in South Africa.

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