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Jobs that pay highest and lowest in Kenya as private firms take crown

 

A garbage truck collects bins in Mihango Estate in Embakasi Nairobi on March 7, 2022. [Boniface Okendo,Standard]

 

Workers in water supply, sewerage, waste management and remediation activities rank as the worst paid in the country’s formal sector with an average monthly earning of Sh24,575.

Their earnings contrast with the average monthly pay of Sh313,084 for employees in non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and multilateral bodies including the World Bank, United Nations and United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) survey showed employees engaged in such activities of extraterritorial organisations and bodies are the only ones alongside those in the public sector’s accommodation and food service activities where monthly average earnings are above Sh200,000.

The survey further reveals the huge pay gaps that exist between the public and private sectors—information that workers seeking to better their earnings can use.

For instance, private sector workers involved in accommodation and food service activities earn Sh168,981 less than their public sector counterparts, making it the area with the highest public-private sector pay gaps.

While private sector workers involved in human health and social work activities take home an average of Sh89,763 per month, their colleagues in the public sector earn Sh65,614 more for the same jobs.

Workers employed for household activities and those involved in undifferentiated goods and services take home Sh24,908 monthly, making them the second lowest paid workers.

Completing the list of top five lowest paid workers in the private sector are those in real estate activities (Sh27,280), agriculture, forestry and fishing (Sh31,470) and those in accommodation and food service activities (Sh37,394).

KNBS puts the average monthly private sector income at Sh69,103 meaning that all the top five lowest paying sectors are below what an average worker in this sector takes home.

Other sectors in private establishments where monthly pay is below average include manufacturing (Sh47,531), mining and quarrying (Sh55,513), construction (Sh63,694) and arts, entertainment and recreation (Sh65,602.

KNBS ranks workers in the private sector’s financial and insurance activities as the second best paid with a monthly income of Sh173,506.

Those in the private sector’s electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply earn an average monthly income of Sh173,104 while those in administrative and support service activities follow with Sh144,539.

Workers involved in transportation and storage activities posted an average monthly income of Sh128,011 to complete the list of the top five highest earners in the private sector.

Agriculture, forestry and fishing rank as the worst paying jobs in the public sector with an average monthly income of Sh42,925.

However, the Sh42,925 is Sh11,456 more than what their counterparts in the private sector earns on monthly basis.

Mining and quarrying pay an average of Sh43,528 in the public sector, meaning that those in the same jobs but serving in the private sector are Sh11,984 better off on monthly basis.

But in water supply, sewerage, waste management and remediation activities, the public sector pays Sh55,754, being more than double the Sh24,575 earned by workers doing similar jobs in the private sector.

Human health

Public administration and defence as well as compulsory social security workers earn an average of Sh56,014 per month to rank as the fourth lowest paying area in the public sector.

Those employed by the government in the education sector earn Sh58,853 on average, being Sh25,371 less than those in the same capacity in the private sector—an indication that private schools are for instance paying teachers more.

KNBS puts the average monthly public sector income at Sh68,632, meaning that all the top five lowest paying sectors are below what workers in government take home on average.

Accommodation and food service activities rank as the best paying jobs in the public sector with an average of Sh206,375 per month, followed by transportation and storage (Sh175,999).

Public sector workers in financial and insurance activities earn Sh163,925 on average every month followed by those in human health and social work activities with Sh155,377.

Those in the electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply jobs under the government take home an average of Sh127,499 to complete the list of top five best payers in public sector.

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