Top earning industries to work in if you're keen on money-making career changes

Money-making career changes

People often make career changes for a variety of different reasons. Some of those reasons include the following: lack of growth opportunities, no room for advancement, the working environment is no longer satisfactory, and you feel like you’ve just outgrown the job.

Of course, one of the other big reasons people want to change jobs, one which many often feel awkward talking about, is that their current job salary is no longer satisfactory. While workplace happiness is very much keyed into your working experience and workplace culture, having a job that provides you with enough financial security is an essential element that is important to consider, especially considering that our economy is continuously evolving (and not always for the better). Making a career shift is becoming increasingly more common – and with new working trends constantly emerging, ensuring that you make the kind of transformation that means better opportunities, job stability and more money should be a primary focus when considering the type of career change that you want.

We list 5 types of high-paying careers you should consider when making a change (some do require a little more effort than others).

Careers in Finance

According to Business Insider, the results of the recent South Africa Salary Survey indicate that jobs in the financial sector are incredibly lucrative. Financial planning is a field that has only gone from strength to strength. There’s always a need for people in the finance sector because people still need help managing their money. You can, according to easily earn between R60 000 and R70 000 in a senior financial management role. The adds that it’s not just those who’ve studied in the business field that is suited to roles in financial management. While having a degree in business and economics is undoubtedly required, suggests that people in liberal arts and those who have degrees in psychology would also make a good fit for roles in financial advising given that helping people with their finances also involves communicating and understanding the emotional issues and fears around money.

Software engineering

The IT sector is one of the most robust industries in the career sector today. With new trends frequently emerging and the industry rapidly evolving (thereby ensuring that new jobs are often being created), there's a wealth of opportunity and money to be made in this field. Global and local wise, software engineering is hugely in demand; and here in South Africa, your salary can start from anywhere between R30 000 – R50 000 per month. According to, the role of a Software Engineer is typically help oversee and develop how software programs run. To become a software engineer, it's highly advisable that you major in software engineering (bachelor’s degrees are usually required in this field), although a degree in computer science also makes you a good fit for the field. Recommended programming languages that are required include Java, Python, C#,  and PHP, to mention but a few.


How to use the skills you have to make a career switch

Working in the medical field

While jobs within the medical sector are often highly stressful, working within the industry means that you can easily earn beyond R600 000 a year. An infographic featured on which details some of the top earning jobs of 2018, indicates that pharmacists alone can earn between R37 000 – R46 000 per month. The amount of money doctors earn varies according to the type of specialised field they’re practising. reveals that an experienced general surgeon earns approximately R800 000 per year Of course, studying in the medical field takes years of hard work, practice and in many cases, further studying if you’re looking to specialise in a specific medical sector, but with a strong work ethic and a commitment to helping people, the work you do in this field will be as rewarding as the amount of money you earn.

Become an Influencer

It may seem trite, but social media has given many people a platform to showcase their talents and earn plenty of money for it. The work by play mode (not as easy as it looks by the way) has never looked more enticing – but to get noticed, you'll need to work on building a name for yourself. It’s all about creating a brand for yourself. Building a brand establishes a following – and the more followers you have, the more sponsors you'll attract. You can easily earn up to R10 000 per sponsored post.  Imagine 10 sponsored posts per month, and that's an easy R100 000. Some local fashion influencers, according to Business Insider are making it big because they’ve tapped into the world of influencer marketing. It certainly seems like an easy way to make money, but marketing yourself as a brand takes hard work, finesse and commitment. Instagram culture may still be relatively young in South Africa in comparison to the US, but it’s a growing market that shows no sign of going away.

Become a life coach

Believe it or not, this is a surprisingly lucrative area to be in. According to PayScale, the average salary can range from R200 000 per annum and up. The salary also depends on the type of life coaching you’d like to specialise in, but if you’re the kind of person who is skilled at helping and working with people,  you could easily earn up to R1000 per session – hard-earned money for the rewarding work of helping people get back on their feet. The best thing is that, according to, you don’t need to have a degree to qualify to be a coach, but there are programmes where you can get a life-coach certificate and training in specific areas you’d like to specialise in.

Writer | Tammy February