Average Surveyor Salary in South Africa (2024)

The average Surveyor Salary in South Africa is R20,400 per month. An entry-level Surveyor earns a salary range of R10,642, a Mid-career level earns about R21,292, and a senior/experienced level earns R27,558 per month.

Average Surveyor Salary in South Africa

Job Title Approximate Monthly Salary (ZAR)
Entry-Level Surveyor 10,642
Mid-Career Surveyor 21,292
Experienced Surveyor 27,558

Types of Surveyors and Their Functions in South Africa

Surveyors in South Africa play a crucial role in various industries, contributing to the development and maintenance of infrastructure, land, and resources. There are several types of surveyors, each specializing in distinct areas. Here’s an overview of some key types and their functions:

1. Land Surveyors

Land surveyors are responsible for measuring and mapping the Earth’s surface, including natural and man-made features. They establish property boundaries, assess land for development, and provide accurate measurements for legal and construction purposes.

2. Geodetic Surveyors

Geodetic surveyors focus on large-scale measurements of the Earth’s shape, gravity field, and rotation. They use advanced technologies like GPS to create precise reference systems for mapping and navigation, ensuring accurate positioning for various applications.

3. Mining Surveyors

Mining surveyors work in the mining industry, providing essential data for the extraction of minerals. They measure and map mining areas, monitor excavation activities, and ensure compliance with mining regulations and safety standards.

4. Hydrographic Surveyors

Hydrographic surveyors specialize in mapping underwater features of oceans, rivers, and other bodies of water. They use specialized equipment to collect data on water depth, tides, and seabed topography, supporting navigation, marine construction, and environmental management.

5. Quantity Surveyors

Quantity surveyors, also known as construction economists, focus on the financial aspects of construction projects. They estimate costs, manage budgets, and ensure that construction projects are completed within financial constraints. Their role is critical for cost-effective project delivery.

6. Engineering Surveyors

Engineering surveyors work closely with civil engineers to provide accurate measurements and data for construction projects. They ensure that structures are built according to design specifications and assist in the planning and layout of infrastructure projects.

7. Cadastral Surveyors

Cadastral surveyors specialize in defining and documenting land ownership, property boundaries, and land rights. They play a key role in maintaining land records, resolving boundary disputes, and supporting land administration systems.

8. Photogrammetric Surveyors

Photogrammetric surveyors use aerial and satellite imagery to create detailed maps and three-dimensional models of landscapes. They apply principles of photogrammetry to extract precise measurements from photographs, aiding in mapping and urban planning.

In South Africa, these surveyors work collaboratively to support the country’s development, ensuring that land and resources are managed efficiently and sustainably. Their expertise is essential for maintaining accurate records, promoting responsible land use, and contributing to the growth of various industries.

Factors Affecting Surveyor’s Salaries in South Africa

The field of surveying plays a pivotal role in various industries, including construction, land development, and infrastructure projects. Surveyors in South Africa, like their counterparts around the world, are influenced by a range of factors that impact their salaries. Understanding these factors is crucial for both professionals in the field and stakeholders seeking to attract and retain skilled surveyors.

1. Education and Experience

The level of education and years of experience a surveyor possesses significantly influence their earning potential. Advanced degrees and extensive experience often lead to higher salaries as they indicate a deeper understanding of complex surveying tasks.

2. Professional Certification

Holding relevant certifications, such as those from the South African Geomatics Council (SAGC), can enhance a surveyor’s credibility and salary prospects. Certification demonstrates a commitment to professional standards and ongoing education.

3. Specialization

Surveyors may specialize in various areas, such as land surveying, hydrographic surveying, or geodetic surveying. Specialized skills and knowledge often command higher salaries due to the specific expertise required for these roles.

4. Geographical Location

Salaries can vary significantly based on the geographic location of the surveyor’s work. Urban centres with high demand for surveying services may offer higher salaries compared to rural areas where demand may be lower.

5. Industry Sector

The industry in which a surveyor works influences their earning potential. Surveyors involved in lucrative sectors like oil and gas, mining, or large-scale construction projects may command higher salaries compared to those working in less financially rewarding sectors.

6. Economic Conditions

Economic conditions, both nationally and globally, play a role in salary fluctuations. Economic downturns may lead to reduced demand for surveying services, impacting salaries. Conversely, economic growth may create more opportunities and potentially higher compensation.

7. Technological Proficiency

Proficiency with advanced surveying technologies, such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS), Global Positioning Systems (GPS), and remote sensing tools, can positively impact a surveyor’s salary. The ability to leverage cutting-edge technology enhances efficiency and accuracy in surveying tasks.

8. Negotiation Skills

The ability to negotiate salary terms and advocate for fair compensation is a crucial factor. Surveyors who effectively communicate their value and skills during salary negotiations may secure higher salaries.

9. Company Size and Reputation

Working for a reputable and large surveying firm or government agency may provide access to more significant projects and resources, potentially leading to higher salaries. The company’s financial stability and reputation also play a role in determining compensation levels.

How to Become a Surveyor in South Africa

To become a surveyor in South Africa, one must follow a structured educational and professional path. Surveyors play a crucial role in land development, mapping, and ensuring accurate property boundaries. Here is a detailed guide on how to become a surveyor in South Africa:

1. Educational Requirements

Obtain a National Senior Certificate (NSC) with mathematics and physical science as subjects. These are typically required for admission to surveying programs.

2. Choose the Right Educational Institution

Enroll in a recognized institution offering surveying or geomatics programs accredited by the South African Geomatics Council (SAGC). Notable institutions include the University of Cape Town, the University of Pretoria, and the University of KwaZulu-Natal.

3. Pursue a Relevant Degree

Obtain a Bachelor’s degree in surveying or geomatics. This program typically takes three to four years to complete and covers subjects such as geodesy, cartography, remote sensing, and land surveying.

4. Gain Practical Experience

Many surveying programs include practical training as part of the curriculum. Seek internships or work placements to gain hands-on experience in the field, working with experienced surveyors.

5. Registration with the South African Geomatics Council (SAGC)

After completing your degree, you must register with the SAGC. This involves submitting your academic transcripts, proof of practical training, and any other required documentation.

6. Write Professional Board Examinations

The SAGC conducts professional board examinations that aspiring surveyors must pass to become registered professionals. This exam assesses theoretical knowledge and practical skills.

7. Obtain Professional Registration

Once you successfully pass the board examinations, you can apply for professional registration with the South African Geomatics Council. This step is crucial for legal recognition as a professional surveyor.

8. Continue Professional Development

Surveyors are required to engage in continuous professional development to stay abreast of advancements in technology and changes in legislation. Attend workshops, conferences, and training programs to enhance your skills.

9. Specialize if Desired

Surveyors can choose to specialize in areas such as cadastral surveying, hydrographic surveying, or geospatial information. Specialization can enhance career prospects and open up opportunities in specific sectors.

10. Join Professional Organizations

Consider joining professional organizations such as the South African Geomatics Institute (SAGI) to network with fellow surveyors, stay informed about industry developments, and access additional resources for professional growth.

By following these steps, individuals can navigate the educational and professional requirements to become qualified and registered surveyors in South Africa. Keep in mind that regulations and requirements may evolve, so staying informed and connected within the profession is essential for a successful career.



The average Surveyor Salary in South Africa is R20,400 per month. Surveyors’ salaries in South Africa are influenced by a combination of factors ranging from educational qualifications and experience to industry specialization and economic conditions. Staying abreast of industry trends, acquiring relevant certifications, and embracing technological advancements can contribute to a surveyor’s professional growth and earning potential in this dynamic field.