Good news for job seekers in South Africa – the sectors that are hiring and the skills they are looking for

Research by recruitment firm Pnet shows that most employment sectors in South Africa are returning to pre-pandemic levels of hiring activity, with vacancies in almost every field.

The research is based on a database of more than five million registered users on Pnet’s platform and assesses the first quarter of 2022 compared to the first quarter of 2020, before the Covid-19 pandemic hit.

Research by Pnet reveals that the number of vacancies in the South African labor market has reached record levels.

“Not only is this likely to boost the confidence of candidates looking for a new job, but it is also a significant indicator of the return of business confidence,” he said.

The first quarter of 2022 saw a seasonally adjusted increase of 8.5% in job openings compared to the last quarter of 2021. Using the first quarter of 2020 data as a reference (100%), data from Pnet shows that most sectors in South Africa are currently showing an increase in vacancies, indicating many more job opportunities in the market.

The medical and healthcare sector is up 30%, security and emergency services up 28%, manufacturing and assembly up 25% and the legal sector up 20%.

Job seekers in these occupations face significantly improved job prospects compared to two years ago, Pnet said.

Job opportunities have also increased in the design, media and arts sector as well as in the science and technology, information technology, administration, office and business sectors. assistance, catering and hotels and cleaning, maintenance and repairs.

On the other side of the market, employment opportunities are currently below first quarter 2020 levels in the education, training and library sector, the warehousing and logistics sector as well than the financial sector, the group said.

“At the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, in March 2020, no one could imagine the impact it would have on the economy and the labor market. It is encouraging to see that employers are hiring 8.3% more than two years ago,” he said.

Pnet said it has noted an increase in hiring for remote positions in South Africa, with most remote job opportunities in the IT, business management and administration sectors. office. Remote hiring is at its highest level since the start of the Covid pandemic, and has only increased over the past two years.

Remote job postings have more than tripled since the first quarter of 2021, he said.

Regionally, most employment opportunities are in Gauteng, with Pnet seeing a steady increase in new vacancies across the province. In the first quarter of 2022, the province accounted for 53% of overall labor demand, followed by the Western Cape at 22% and KwaZulu Natal at 10%.

“There is a clear focus on the demand for IT skills in the Western Cape and Gauteng regions,” Pnet said. “Across all regions, candidates with business and management expertise are in high demand. Businesses in all parts of the country need a relatively large amount of financial and administrative staff as well as office and support staff.

Here are the main skills in demand in South Africa:

Region Main skills sought
Gauteng IT, business management, finance
western cape Computer science
KwaZulu Natal Business management, finance, sales, administration and support
Mpumalanga Business management, sales
eastern cape Building and construction
North West Commercial, commercial, financial management
free state Business management, sales
Limpopo Business Management
North Cape Medical and healthcare, building and construction
International Business Management


Pnet has highlighted the market-related salaries on offer in selected roles across IT, finance and business management:

Computer science

  • C# development: R39,000 – R58,000 pm
  • Java development: R44,000 – R64,000 pm
  • .Net development: R39,000 – R56,000 pm
  • Full stack development: R36,000 – R60,000 pm


  • Accounting: R19,000 – R21,000 pm
  • Accounts Payable / Debtor: R18,000 – R22,000 pm
  • Financial or project accounting: R30,000 – R38,000 pm

Business and management

  • Intermediate or department management: R37,000 – R52,000 pm
  • Senior executive: R76,000 – R99,000 pm
  • Team leader or supervisor: R25,000 – R34,000 pm

Read: SARS wants to boost its workforce by 800 – these are the skills it wants

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