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Tech Career Insights: Full Stack Developer Salary Trends in South Africa
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Full Stack Developer Salary Trends in South Africa

18 January 2024, by Josh Nel

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44.8% of survey respondents in our 2023 State of the Software Developer Nation identify as full stack developers, making it the most common role ahead of backend and frontend developers. Here we’ll look at average full stack developer salaries at each stage of their careers and how that compares to frontend and backend developers.


Average entry-level and junior full stack developer salary trends

Entry-level full stack developers with less than two years’ experience should earn a monthly salary of around R22 171, 5.9% (R1 233) more than 2022’s average salary. At this stage of their careers, they earn 18.6% (R5 054) less than entry-level backend developers but 8.8% (R1 784) more than their frontend counterparts.

Once they pass the two-year mark, junior full stack developers see an increase of 43.4% (R9 596). This gives them an average monthly salary of R31 767, 9.4% (R2 718), ahead of the 2022 average salary for this level. They also earn 10.3% (R3 641) less than junior backend developers but 16.9% (R4 585) more than those working on the frontend.

With four to six years of experience under their belts, full stack developers receive the most significant increase of their careers at 44.4% (R14 098), bringing their earnings to R45 865. However, despite this increase, they still trail mid-level backend developers by 9.7% (R4 919).

Possessing a wide range of knowledge, full stack developers are in high demand and can afford to negotiate for handsome increases. The fact that junior developers tend to switch companies more often, starting on a higher salary at a new job, likely explains the rapid increase in remuneration in the early stages of their careers.

Average Full Stack Developer Salaries

Average Salary by Years Experience, showing 25th and 75th percentiles
Years of Experience 25th Percentile Average 75th Percentile
0-2 R13,000 R22,171 R28,000
2-4 R18,000 R31,767 R38,000
4-6 R33,000 R45,865 R53,000
6-10 R43,000 R61,418 R73,000
10+ R63,000 R81,943 R98,000

Salary increases for full stack developers slow slightly at the senior level but remain above 30%. With at least six years of experience, they can expect a 33.9% (R15 553) raise for an average salary of R61 418. That’s a nominal 1.8% (R1 076) more than 2022’s average salary for this level and sees their advantage over senior frontend developers narrow to 3.6% (R2 130).

Full stack developers with more than ten years on the job can expect a 33.4% (R20 525) pay hike for an average salary of R81 943. At this stage of their careers, backend developers earn 10% (R9 100) more than them, while senior frontend developers earn 15.1% (R10 729) less.

Despite slightly lower raises than earlier career stages, these significant increases reflect the incredible value developers with a deep understanding of front- and backend development offer employers.

Average Full Stack Developer Salaries in 2023 vs 2022

Years of Experience 2023 2022
0-2 R22,171 R20,938
2-4 R31,767 R29,049
4-6 R45,865 R41,575
6-10 R61,418 R60,342
10+ R81,943 R77,572

Keep in mind

The data in this article is taken from OfferZen’s 2023 State of the Software Developer Nation Report. In this article, ‘salary’ refers to the gross monthly salary (before tax) provided by more than 4500 survey respondents.

Average salaries are single data points and only one part of a bigger story. Many respondents are expected to earn significantly more or less than these averages. However, we aim to provide a picture of underlying trends by mapping 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 influence the salary a company will offer prospective hires. 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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