An average police SAPS salary in South Africa is anywhere around R18 600. The payscale for such personnel is between R8 550 and R29 600 per month, based on their skills, expertise, education, and reporting station. If you are planning to enter this field and want to know more about their salary, keep on reading this guide.
Police (SAPS) Salary in South Africa
Here is a breakdown of the police officers or SAPS officer salaries in South Africa.
Salaries for SAPS police officers in South Africa fall in the range of R8 550 (min) and R29 600 (max) per month. On an hourly basis, an average police officer in the country earns around R110. However, do consider that this is not a legally mandated salary, and it can go above and below based on your expertise, educational qualification, and gender.
According to the official stats, almost half of the police workforce earns R17 800, which is near the average salary. Moreover, the 25th percentile, or 25% of the workforce earning is around R14 300 per month, whereas the 75th percentile, or 75% of the workforce salary is anywhere around R20 500 per month. Hence, we can assume that more employees are in higher-paying positions in the SA police department.
The SAPS officers in South Africa enjoy fringe benefits, apart from the monthly salary. It includes housing, transport, rent allowance, and medical insurance. However, this is largely based on the employee’s skills, gender, experience, and the reporting station within the country.
Comparison with America
An average police officer in the USA earns $55,023 per year, which makes it around $26.45 each hour. The salary range for cops in America starts from $42,587 and goes up to $81,531 based on your expertise and qualifications. However, as compared to the police officers working in South Africa, the police officers in the USA get paid on a biweekly basis.
Professional Responsibilities of a Police SAPS
South African Police Service Officers or SAPS in South Africa are the employees recruited in the police department according to Sections 19 (1) and 221 (2). These personnel are responsible for maintaining the security and safety of the people living in a community. Following are some professional duties a police SAP is required to perform in South Africa.
- Preventing the safety and security dangers to the community
- Combatting any risk that may inflict danger to the people living in the community
- Investigating the crimes and criminals according to the South African constitution
- Make sure justice is served
- Participates in investigations along with other departments
Factors that Influence SAPS Salary in South Africa
There are multiple factors that play a role in determining the salaries of police officers in South Africa, ranging from educational qualification to level of experience, and gender. So, let us discuss them further, so you can decide how to pursue this career.
Do you need a degree to serve as a police officer in South Africa? Yes, any job in the police department of SA requires a minimal level of high school diploma. As you progress in your qualification, your pay scale gets better and you start earning more.
So, let us discuss the following educational qualifications for police officers.
- High-School Certificate
The police employees, generally subordinates, with a high-school certificate earn an average salary of R11 000.
- Certificate/ Diploma
A specialized police diploma is considered better than a high-school diploma. Employees with this qualification earn anywhere around R17 400, which is 57% more than the previous level.
- Bachelor’s Degree
A bachelor’s degree is considered the highest qualification level for police officers. People with this certification have an average salary range of R29 100, which is 68% more than the previous level.
|Education/ Qualification||Salary Range|
|High-School Certificate||R11 100|
|Certificate/ Diploma||R17 400|
|University Degree (Bachelors)||R29 100|
Level of Experience
Secondly, another factor that plays a contributing role in determining the SAPS salary in South Africa is the level of experience. It is pretty obvious that employees with more experience will be placed higher in the pay scale. Here is a breakdown of how police officers get paid on the basis of experience
- Less than 2 Years of Experience
Police employees with less than two years of experience earn anywhere around R9 710.
- 2-5 Years of Experience
Police officers with two to five years of experience have an expected salary of R13 000, which is 34% more than the previous category.
- 5-10 Years of Experience
Speaking of police officers with five to ten years of experience, they earn anywhere around R19 200, which is 48% more than the previous level.
- 10-15 Years of Experience
Moving forward, police officers with experience of ten to fifteen years earn a salary of R23 400, which is almost 22% more than the previous category.
- 15-20 Years of Experience
Similarly, police officers with an experience of fifteen to twenty years earn anywhere around R25 500, which is 9% more than the employees in the previous level.
- More than 20 Years of Experience
Finally, employees with a total of twenty years of experience or more have an expected salary of R27 600, which is around 8% more than those with less experience.
Public Vs. Private Sector
People entering security-related jobs wonder whether entering the public or private sectors would be more beneficial. Well, in this case, like other professions, the SAPS professionals in government-run institutes earn more than those working with private institutes. Following is the salary difference between police officers recruited in the public and private sectors.
|Public Sector||R32 400||7% increase|
|Private Sector||R30 400|
Moreover, gender also plays an important role in determining the salaries of SAPS officers in South Africa. And given the criteria and workspace, this profession is largely dominated by men. According to the stats, around 12% of male get more recruitments in SAPS in comparison with their female counterparts.
|Male||19, 600||12% increase|
City of Allocation
Last but not least, the city of allocation plays a contributing role in determining the police officer’s salary in South Africa. According to the stats, you will notice that employees stationed in remote locations get relatively more salary and fringe benefits, according to their commute, housing, and other needs. So, let us discuss how salaries are decided on the basis of their station.
|City Station||Average Salary (Per Month)|
|Cape Town||R20 900|
|Port Elizabeth||R18 400|
What is the average salary of a police officer in South Africa?
An average police officer in South Africa earns around R 18 600. The pay scale ranges between R8 550 and R29 600.
What is the average hourly salary of a police officer in South Africa?
The average hourly salary of a police officer or SAPS officer in South Africa is around R110.
Do you need a degree to become a police officer in South Africa?
Though you do not necessarily need a university degree to become a police officer in South Africa, it still requires you to at least have a high school diploma. That said, your educational qualification can make a huge difference in deciding your monthly salary.
Are police officers in the public sector getting paid more than the private sector?
Yes, public sector employees in the police departments get paid more than their private sector counterparts. According to the stats, there is an approximately 7% difference in their pay scale.
Do men or women SAPS police officers get paid more in South Africa?
According to the workspace salary estimation, men in the police department are paid around 8% more than their female colleagues. However, it all comes down to your level of experience and educational qualifications.
What is the lowest salary of a police officer in South Africa?
The lowest salary a police officer earns in South Africa is around R8 550 per month.
What is the average salary of a police officer in America?
The average salary of a police officer in America is anywhere around $55,032 per year.
SAPS Police is a highly reputable and rewarding professional anywhere in the world, let alone in South Africa. Not only this, it has significant financial and fringe benefits to motivate students inspiring to enter this field. I hope this guide has been helpful in deciding whether pursuing your career as a police officer in South Africa is worth it.