The Average Starting Salary in Australia Is… Higher Than You’d Expect

Average salary Australia

A newly-released salary guide shows the average starting salaries for jobs in finance, business support and tech across Australia, as well as what employees in these roles are generally asking from hiring managers.

What are the Salary Trends for 2023?

The 2023 Robert Half Salary Guide found that 61% of Australian employers had encountered a candidate in the last 12 months who had unrealistic salary expectations about their new role. They’d asked for a salary well beyond what may be considered reasonable.

“2023 will be a year when the candidate’s bargaining power has started to re-balance, and it will become rarer to see high percentage increases for both candidates who move companies and those who stay with existing employers,” says David Jones, Senior Manager Director at Robert Half Asia Pacific.

The guide also found that, just as candidates aren’t afraid to ask for more than the initial salary offer, so too are employers not afraid to put their foot down. While 41% of candidates were successful in securing more than what was originally offered, a whopping 59% were not. Businesses were also found to prefer contract talent rather than permanent positions, says Jones.

“People who are changing jobs need to start to consider what motivates them to move beyond a salary increment,” says Jones. “In 2023, it will become more common for employers to hold firm on not meeting what they consider more unrealistic salary requests. This revised market direction will reduce significant salary increases as a primary driver as to why someone moves roles.”

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As for how employers can go about dealing with unrealistic salary expectations, Jones suggests they start by becoming familiar with industry salary trends, and entering any salary negotiations as informed as possible. Next, you’ll want to build a case.

“Once a salary request from a candidate is received, don’t just counter with a ‘yes’ or ‘no’,” says Jones. “Explain why the request is accepted or rejected. Highlighting industry trends, salary benchmarks, and/or company-specific reasons behind decisions can help ensure the candidate is informed and a successful agreement is negotiated.”

Finally, he suggests the employer should lean on perks and benefits. It may be less costly than a bump in salary to concede ground on providing extra leave days, flexible hours or a work-from-home schedule, especially in today’s environment.

So, all that said, what are the most in-demand permanent roles and their national average starting salary in Australia this year? Keep reading to see the data from Robert Half Salary Guide 2023 below. Note that only salaries from four of the highest-paid industries were looked into.


Role 25th percentile 50th percentile 75th percentile
Finance Manager $124,500 $138,000 $155,000
Senior Financial Accountant $112,500


$125,500 $140,500
Commercial Analyst $104,500


$117,000 $131,000
Management Accountant $93,500 $103,000 $112,000


Role 25th percentile 50th percentile 75th percentile
Cloud Engineer $126,500 $149,500 $171,000
Cyber-security Specialist $128,500


$147,000 $165,000
Systems Engineer $113,500 $128,500 $153,500
Business Analyst $108,500 $123,000 $136,000

Business Support

Role 25th percentile 50th percentile 75th percentile
Administrative Assistant $59,000 $64,000 $67,500
Receptionist $54,500 $60,000 $64,000
Customer Service Officer $54,500 $60,000 $64,500
Data Entry Clerk $56,500 $60,000 $63,000

Financial Services

Role 25th percentile 50th percentile 75th percentile
Operational Risk Analyst $70,500 $103,500 $122,500
Credit Risk Manager $122,000 $132,000 $141,500
Senior Credit Risk Manager $140,500 $155,500 $174,500
(Senior) Compliance Manager $131,500 $141,500 $155,500

Human Resources

Role 25th percentile 50th percentile 75th percentile
HR Coordinator $69,000 $74,500 $79,500
HR Advisor $81,500  $94,500  $108,500
HR Business Partner $99,000  $113,000  $135,000
HR Manager $123,000  $140,500  $154,000

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