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Tech Career Insights: Python Developer Salary Trends in South Africa
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Python Developer Salary Trends in South Africa

16 October 2023, by Josh Nel

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Python remains South African developers’ most-wanted programming language and the country’s fourth most widely used language. In this article, we’ll explore what they can expect to earn throughout their careers and how their salaries compare to those of Go, Ruby and PHP developers.


Average entry-level and junior Python developer salary trends

Salaries for entry-level Python developers have grown by 20.1% (R3 928) since 2022. They now begin their careers on an average monthly income of R23 450. That’s 31.3% (R5 585) more than rookie PHP developers, but 4.4% (R1 073) less than Go, and 17.5% (R4 971) less than Ruby.

With at least two years of experience, Python developers should see the largest salary increase of their careers, jumping 49.3% (R11 556) to R35 006. That’s 11.8% (R3 688) up on 2022, while being 29.1% (R7 893) ahead of PHP, a notable 26.6% (R12 660) below Go, and 23.3% (R10 619) behind Ruby.

With four-to-six years on the job, Python developers are in for another huge pay jump of 45.4% (R15 894), bringing their income to R50 900 – 9.4% (R4 392) more than the 2022 equivalent. This increase is larger than for other developers at this level, with the result that PHP devs earn 48.1% (R16 532) less, Go devs 23.1% (R15 329) more, and Ruby just 2.5% (R1 279) more.

Average Python Developer Salaries by Experience

Average Salary by Years Experience, showing 25th and 75th percentiles
Years of Experience 25th Percentile Average 75th Percentile
0-2 R10,000 R23,450 R29,500
2-4 R22,500 R35,006 R42,500
4-6 R32,500 R50,900 R59,500
6-10 R47,500 R68,995 R81,500
10+ R67,500 R92,759 R105,000

There’s more good news for Python developers around the six-year mark, with a 35.6% (R18 095) increase putting them on a monthly income of R68 995, where last year they would’ve earned 6.3% (R4 104) less. PHP developers at this level earn 28.9% (R15 450) less, Go 17.2% (R14 310) more, and Ruby 10.5% (R8 060) more.

Salaries for highly experienced Python developers with at least a decade under their belts have risen just 3.7% (R3 332) since 2022, but a 34.4% increase from their previous level means they should still earn a very respectable R92 759. That’s 17.2% (R13 593) more than PHP, 8.5% (R8 635) less than Go, and 4.3% (R4 176) less than Ruby.

Senior Python developers should have excellent coding and design skills, while also taking on responsibilities like creating technical software reports, supervising testing, training other team members and guiding the overall improvement of the software. Unsurprisingly, candidates with these skills are desirable, which explains why salaries continue to rise so generously for more experienced Python developers.

Average Python Developer Salaries in 2023 vs 2022

Years of Experience 2023 2022
0-2 R23,450 R19,523
2-4 R35,006 R31,318
4-6 R50,900 R46,508
6-10 R68,995 R64,891
10+ R92,759 R89,428

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. It’s expected that many respondents may earn significantly more or less than these averages. However, we hope 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 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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