SA coloureds earn least
Black professionals have the highest salaries, survey finds
COLOUREDS have the least earning potential in the country on average, men still have the upper hand in the workplace and black professionals earn the most.
This is according to the results of the third annual Careers24 survey released this week. The study is based on responses from 13 583 online South Africans.
It found coloureds have the least earning potential in the country. According to the demographics, the average salary of coloureds was R13 489, compared to Indians at R14 099, black Africans at R17 296 and whites at R19 998.
Consistent with this finding, coloureds received among the lowest salary increases in the period 2008 to 2009 at 5.65 percent, versus whites at 8.43 percent and black Africans at 8.11 percent.
When it comes to job levels, coloureds were concentrated in the junior management level at 29 percent and were the least likely to have a diploma at 28.12 percent, or a bachelor degree at 11.13 percent, but the most likely to have a certificate at 12.71 percent.
In the battle of the sexes, men appear to still have the upper hand in the workplace, earning 65 percent more than women.
Careers24 business manager Michelle Bisaro says: “This year’s study identified those issues which positively or negatively impact employees’ working environments and, in turn, their performance and likelihood to go the extra mile or seek alternative employment.”
The survey found interesting differences among the demographics and sectors, suggesting staff were, at times, dissatisfied with their working environment despite many organisations’ commitment to counter this.
She said: “It’s still a man’s world, as men earned, on aver- age, 65 percent more than women. This was regardless of location, level, qualification or age and was most likely due to the fact women leave their jobs to have children.
“More and more women are re-entering the job market in their early 40s at junior management. This puts women at a
‘Men still appear to have the upper hand in the workplace’
disadvantage to men, because when she takes a few years off to raise her children, men continue to gain experience. It also accounts for the fact men continue to dominate top management positions.”
To counter this trend, Bisaro suggested women ar m themselves with short-course certificates before re-entering the job market.
“With a certificate women could ear n 20 percent more than men who have been in the same positions for double the length of time. Industries where this is evident include legal, property, insurance, administration and NGOs.”
The survey showed Indians received the lowest salary increases. Indians received increases of 0.33 percent. This is compared to coloureds at 5.65 percent, black Africans at 8.11 percent and whites at 8.43 percent.
Interestingly, when asked if they were willing to put in extra effort for their organisation, Indians responded the most favourably. When it came to perceived racial equality, black Africans felt the most threatened by Indians, and the more Indians there were in an industry sector, the more concerned they were about commitments to racial equality.
The survey said while whites were the highest earners from the age of 31 – with the average salary being R19 998 compared to blacks at R17 296, Indians at R14 099 and coloureds at R13 489 – black managers over 50 could have the most earning potential, eclipsing all other demographics.
“Among over-50s, black professionals on average ear n R28 000 a month compared to their white peers who earn R25 500,” says Bisaro.
This trend could be attributed to employment equity policies, where black professionals over 50 were experienced and in short supply.
Bisaro said four years was also the time span allocated to jobs. While black professionals were the most likely to job-hop after 3.47 years, whites and coloureds were more likely to stay around, particularly in top management positions where the average length of employment is seven years.
Bisaro said this was due to the country’s transformation agenda where black professionals were a sought-after commodity. They have greater opportunities at their disposal, command higher salary packages and move frequently for career and financial advancement.