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Tech Career Insights: Cloud Developer Salary Trends in South Africa

Cloud Developer Salary Trends in South Africa

By Josh Nel

Cloud technology is one of developers’ most promising industries in 2022. Since 2019, it’s also been one of the best-paying industries in the country. Here, we’ll look at the average cloud developer salary at each stage of their careers and for their most used cloud platforms: AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud Platform.

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Salaries for entry-level cloud developers start at an average of R21 604 per month and increase by a whopping 55.4% to R33 577 after they’ve been in the profession for at least two years. This is the most significant increase in their careers.

Once they have four years of experience under their belts, they can expect a further 48.2% increase. This gives them an average monthly salary of R49 760.

Why the significant increases? Developers tend to change jobs more frequently during the early stages of their careers. This gives them more room to negotiate a higher market-related salary than the inflationary increases developers can expect if they stay with one company.

Cloud Developer Salaries by Experience

Years of Experience 25th Percentile Average 75th Percentile
0-2 R12,500 R21,604 R27,500
2-4 R22,500 R33,577 R37,500
4-6 R37,500 R49,760 R62,500
6-10 R47,500 R70,000 R90,000
10+ R62,500 R85,703 R105,000

Salary growth for cloud developers slows down once they become seniors. That’s not to say that there’s no growth at all:

Senior cloud developers with six to ten years of experience can still look forward to a 40.9% increase. This gives them an average monthly salary of R70 000.

Once they’ve been in the profession for more than ten years, senior cloud developers see their salaries rise by an additional 22.4% to an average of R85 703.

Why is there a slow down in salary growth? At higher levels of experience, companies also have to carefully consider salary increases as developer salaries become less affordable. That means that salary increases won’t be as significant as those for junior developers whose salary range still isn’t that high.

Experience is not the only factor that determines a cloud developer’s average salary. Instead, their most-used platform also impacts their earning potential.

Let’s look at what cloud developers working with each of the country’s most-used platforms earn across their careers and how that compares to the average cloud developer.

Cloud developer salary by cloud platform

AWS developer salary

AWS is South Africa’s most-used cloud platform. It is also one of the best-paying.

Average salaries for AWS developers start at R21 605 for those just kicking off their tech careers, equivalent to the average for entry-level cloud developers as a whole.

This increases by 51% to an average of R32 631 after two years in the profession, 2.8% less than the average cloud developer.

AWS developers with four to six years of experience can expect a 48.7% increase. This gives them an average monthly salary of R48 516.

Average salaries for entry-level AWS developers have more than doubled by the time they reach mid-career levels.

Senior AWS developers with more than six years of experience see their salaries increase by 40.2% to R68 000. The gap between senior AWS and average cloud developer salaries is now at its widest, at 2.9%.

Once they pass the ten-year mark, this gap has closed again. Senior AWS developers with more than ten years of experience see their salaries rise by 26.7% to R86 128. At this point, AWS developers earn the highest salaries among all cloud developers.

AWS Developer Salaries by Experience

Years of Experience 25th Percentile Average 75th Percentile
0-2 R12,500 R21,605 R27,500
2-4 R22,500 R32,631 R37,500
4-6 R37,500 R48,516 R57,500
6-10 R47,500 R68,000 R82,500
10+ R67,500 R86,128 R105,000

Azure developer salary

Azure developer salaries start at an average of R19 687 per month for entry-level developers, 8.9% less than the typical entry-level cloud developer.

This rises by 47.5% to an average of R29 034 for Azure developers with more than two years of experience. At this stage of their careers, the gap between them and the average cloud developer has widened to 13.5%.

Mid-level Azure developers can look forward to a 40.7% increase, giving them an average salary of R40 855.

Senior Azure developers with more than six years of experience see their average salaries rise by 36.5% to R55 761.

However, Azure developers in this bracket have the widest salary gap compared to cloud developers as a whole, at 20.3%

Unlike their AWS counterparts and cloud developers in general, senior Azure developers with more than ten years of experience see a significant salary increase of 46.9%, giving them an average monthly salary of R81 912. This increase also narrows the gap between them and average cloud developers to 4.4%.

Azure Developer Salaries by Experience

Years of Experience 25th Percentile Average 75th Percentile
0-2 R11,875 R19,687 R27,500
2-4 R17,500 R29,034 R32,500
4-6 R32,500 R40,855 R47,500
6-10 R42,500 R55,761 R67,500
10+ R62,500 R81,912 R97,500

Google cloud developer salary

Google cloud developer salaries start at an average of R 19 096 for entry-level developers, 11.6% lower than the average entry-level cloud developer. This makes it one of the lowest-paid cloud platforms for entry-level developers in South Africa.

Junior Google cloud developers see their salaries rise by 39.1% to R26 564 once they have at least two years’ experience, 20.9% less than the average for junior cloud developers.

Google cloud developers start to catch up at the mid-career level:

Google cloud developers with more than four years of experience can expect a massive 67.9% increase, giving them an average monthly salary of R44 611.

Senior Google cloud developers see their salary growth slow to 28.3% once they’ve been in the profession for at least six years. This gives them an average salary of R57 222.

They can look forward to a 36.7% salary increase to an average of R78 209 once they’ve gained more than ten years of experience.

Google Cloud Developer Salaries by Experience

Years of Experience 25th Percentile Average 75th Percentile
0-2 R10,000 R19,096 R22,500
2-4 R17,500 R26,564 R32,500
4-6 R32,500 R44,611 R57,500
6-10 R42,500 R57,222 R72,500
10+ R62,500 R78,209 R97,500

Keep in mind

The data in this article is taken from OfferZen’s 2022 State of the Software Developer Nation Report. In this article, ‘salary’ refers to the gross monthly salary (before tax) provided by more than 3 200 survey respondents.

Average salaries are single data points and only one part of a bigger story. It’s expected that many respondents may earn significantly more or less than these averages. However, we hope to map underlying trends by tracking the average salaries for different experience levels.

These averages should not be used to estimate what your actual salary will or should be.

Salaries depend on the industry, individual, perks and nature of work. These factors all influence the salary a company will offer to a prospective hire. In addition, most developers are “fluent” in several languages, which will affect the final figures.

It’s also important to remember that every individual’s context is different. Ultimately, salary is a personal conversation that should take place between employee and employer.

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