Lagos has one of the largest and most diverse economies in Africa and is Nigeria’s commercial nerve center. With a population of over 20 million people, Lagos has a thriving job market but also cut-throat competition for the best opportunities. In this post, we examine the top 20 highest-paying job vacancies that are in high demand in Lagos over the next two years based on extensive research.
1. Medical Doctors
Being a medical doctor is consistently one of the highest-paying jobs in Lagos, given the dire shortage of healthcare professionals in Nigeria. According to data from the National Association of Resident Doctors, the average monthly salary for a medical officer in Lagos is between N500,000 and N1.5 million, depending on experience and specialization. Some of the specializations that are most in demand include general practitioners, pediatricians, cardiologists, surgeons, and obstetricians/gynecologists.
Hospitals and clinics in Lagos are perpetually overburdened and understaffed. The boom in private healthcare has also increased competition for top doctors. Organizations like Avon HMO, Fortis HMO, AXA Mansard, and Hygeia are recruiting medical talent aggressively. A doctor working in the emergency room of a major private hospital can expect to earn well over N2 million monthly with medical benefits.
2. Finance Professionals
The finance sector is the backbone of Nigeria’s economy, and Lagos is the epicenter of banking, Fintech, investments, and private equity. Some of the highest-earning roles are Investment/Private Bankers, Hedge Fund Managers, Financial Analysts, Financial Planners/Advisors, Accountants and Auditors. Entry-level investment banking analysts in top firms like United Capital, Coronation Merchant Bank, and FSDH Merchant Bank earn around N500,000 monthly on average.
Experienced investment/private bankers and wealth managers in tier 1 banks like First Bank, GT Bank, Zenith Bank, and Access Bank can earn over N2 million monthly. Those working at foreign multinationals like Stanbic IBTC, Citibank, and Standard Chartered may earn up to N4-5 million depending on bonuses and commissions. Hedge fund managers at firms like Quantum Global and ARM Investment Managers can earn well over N5 million monthly, depending on fund performance.
As the commercial nerve center of Nigeria, Lagos is a rapidly urbanizing mega city that requires huge infrastructure investment and expansion. This drives massive demand for civil, electrical, mechanical, and systems engineers. According to data from the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN), the average monthly pay package for engineers in Lagos is between N400,000 and N1.2 million, depending on experience and specialization.
Some of the highest-paying jobs are project managers, site engineers, electrical works engineers, process engineers, and systems integration engineers. Those working for top construction firms like Julius Berger, China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation, and Arab Contractors earn at least N800,000 monthly. Oil & gas companies, utility service providers, telecoms, and manufacturing companies also offer lucrative packages to the right engineering talent.
4. Information Technology Specialists
As the commercial hub of West Africa, Lagos is going through a digital transformation across all sectors. This has made Information Technology one of the most in-demand fields. Developers, systems administrators, cybersecurity experts, network engineers, and project managers are headhunted aggressively.
Entry-level roles at tier 1 tech companies like SystemSpecs, Anthropic, Convention People, and Flutterwave start from N350,000 monthly. Mid-level professionals earn between N700,000 and N1.2 million per month depending on skills and experience. Those with niche skills like data science, AI, machine learning, cloud infrastructures, and blockchain can earn over N2 million monthly at established tech firms. A Chief Technology Officer (CTO) at a leading startup or mid-sized company earns approximately N3-5 million monthly on average.
5. Sales and Marketing Professionals
Demand for sales and marketing talent remains consistently high across all industries in Lagos, from FMCGs to telecoms and financial services. Roles in high demand include Sales Representatives, Sales Managers, Account Managers, Digital Marketers, Brand Managers, and Marketing Communications Specialists.
Some of the top-paying organizations are multinationals like Procter & Gamble, Unilever Nigeria, Nestle, Flour Mills of Nigeria, and leading banks. Entry-level sales reps in these firms earn around N300,000 monthly in addition to commissions. Experienced sales managers and senior account managers take home a minimum of N800,000. Marketing Managers, Brand Managers, and Head of Marketing roles in tier 1 companies earn between N1.5-N3 million per month depending on firm size and performance bonuses.
6. Accounting and Finance Specialists
Chartered Accountants, Certified Public Accountants, Finance Controllers, Forensic Accountants, and Budget Managers are in huge demand across various sectors in Lagos. The oil & gas, manufacturing, financial services, and government have a high need for accounting and finance talent.
Entry-level roles start from N300,000 monthly at small/medium-sized firms. Big 4 accounting firms like KPMG, PwC, Pricewaterhouse Coopers, and Ernst & Young offer graduate recruits N500,000 and above. Experienced professionals earn over N1 million on average. Those with specialized skills like forensic accounting, mergers and acquisitions, or heading finance departments of large conglomerates earn between N2 and 5 million monthly.
While teachers have traditionally been underpaid in Nigeria, the proliferation of private schools and tutoring centers in Lagos has driven salaries higher, as also evidenced by data from the Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria.
Entry-level teachers who are fresh graduates earn N150,000-N250,000 monthly at small private schools. Experienced teachers who are subject specialists earn at least N350,000. Those working at top private schools like Adebola Mixed, Greensprings, Curriculum Schools, and Lekki British School earn between N500,000 and N1 million per month, depending on qualifications and experience. Principals of these schools earn at least N2 million monthly. Tutors at one-on-one training centers may earn N500,000 and above largely from commissions. Subject teachers at tertiary institutions in Lagos average between N800,000 to N1.5 million per month.
Aviation is a booming sector in Nigeria, and piloting is one of the most in-demand high-skilled careers. Major airlines like Air Peace, Arik Air, Azman Air, and Max Air are actively recruiting pilots. According to data from the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), pilots’ salaries in Nigeria range between N700,000 and N3 million monthly, depending on seniority, training, aircraft type, and experience.
First officers (co-pilots) with over 1,000 hours of flying time earn at least N700,000 at smaller airlines. Those with air transport pilot’s license (ATPL) commanding narrow or wide-body aircraft at the major airlines start at N2 million as Captains and earn over N3 million with experience. Top expatriate pilots working with corporations or the oil majors earn between N5 and 8 million monthly.
9. Programmers and Software Engineers
Software development continues to be one of the most rewarding fields in Lagos as the innovation economy blossoms. Programmers and software engineers are recruited aggressively by startups and established tech companies.
Entry-level programmers earn around N350,000 at small/medium companies. Those with expertise in highly sought-after languages and technologies like Java, C++, Python, Node.js, React, and databases start at over N500,000/month in major firms. Mid-level engineers take home N800,000-N1.5 million. At top fintech companies like Paystack, Flutterwave, and PiggyVest, senior software engineers earn N2-5 million monthly, depending on roles and responsibilities. Principal engineers and technical leads exceed N5 million.
The pace of urbanization and real estate construction boom is driving massive demand for licensed electricians in Lagos. Those who are certified by the Electrical Contractors Association of Nigeria (ECAN) or have experience working with electrical contractors are headhunted incessantly.
Entry-level electricians earn around N250,000 monthly installing wiring and fixtures. Those working as supervisors earn at least N350,000. Experienced electrical foremen commanding teams of electricians take home N500,000 at mid-sized firms. Electricians working on major projects managed by foreign contractors earn N700,000-N1 million due to technical skill requirements and responsibilities. Electrical project managers overseeing multiple sites may earn over N1.5 million monthly.
Installing and fixing water pipes, drainage networks, and sanitary equipment is challenging but in high demand. Licensed plumbers registered with the Plumbers and Allied Contractors Association of Nigeria (PACAN) are always sought after across residential and commercial construction.
Entry-level plumbers earn between N200,000 and N300,000 monthly, depending on experience. Those with 1-3 years working as supervisors on sites earn at least N350,000. Skilled plumbers with 5+ years of experience commanding teams earn around N500,000 monthly on average. Plumbers working on projects for blue-chip real estate and construction firms take home at least N650,000. Experienced plumbing project managers coordinating multiple sites for major developers earn well over N1 million monthly. Those with specialist skills in fire sprinkler installation, PVC pipes, etc, earn even higher salaries.
As the commercial nerve center of Nigeria, Lagos has immense demand for litigation lawyers, corporate counsels, contracts, and commercial lawyers due to rampant business activities across every sector.
Graduate lawyers working at small law firms earn around N250,000 monthly. Those joining established firms like Banwo & Ighodalo, Templars, and Seyi Obayemi & Co earn N350,000 – N500,000 as associates. Mid-level lawyers who are partners or senior associates make between N800,000 and N1.5 million, depending on expertise and clientele. Legal experts specializing in oil & gas, banking/finance, or mergers and acquisitions doing well at major commercial law practices earn over N3 million monthly. In-house counsels at top companies may earn up to N5 million.
13. Surveillance/Security Systems Engineers
As security concerns rise amid increased criminal activities, there is a huge demand for talented engineers who can design, install, and manage electronic surveillance systems for homes, businesses, and public places. Organizations seek experts with multiple certifications in related technologies.
Surveillance/security systems engineers at the entry level earn around N350,000 monthly when starting out. Mid-career professionals with 3-5 years of experience make at least N600,000 at reputable security firms. Those managing projects, assisting big clients, or possessing niche skills in access control, video analytics, and RFID earn N800,000 – N1.5 million. Top security engineers overseeing multi-site projects for government agencies, banks, real estate developers, or oil/gas firms earn well over N2 million per month.
With increased healthcare spending and new drug policies, pharmacists are in high demand across hospitals, pharmaceutical firms, retail pharmacies, research labs, and manufacturing. Specialized talent that can also double as regulatory experts are most sought after.
Entry-level Pharmacists start at around N300,000 monthly at small retail shops. Those working in hospitals start at N350,000. Pharmacists with 2-3 years of experience can earn at least N500,000. Senior clinical pharmacists in major hospitals earn about N800,000 – N1.2 million. Pharmacists working at top pharmaceutical companies earn N1.5 – N2.5 million on average. Those in senior regulatory roles at federal agencies earn over N3 million per month.
15. Supply Chain and Procurement Managers
Growing commerce has elevated the importance of efficient sourcing and logistics. Procurement and supply chain managers play a key role in ensuring smoothly functioning operations in manufacturing, retail, construction, and other major sectors.
Entry-level supply chain associates at mid-sized firms earn around N350,000 monthly. Procurement officers start at N400,000. Experienced managers earn no less than N800,000. Those handling strategic procurement and overseeing distribution at large multinational manufacturing/retail firms earn at least N1.5 million per month on average. Supply chain directors working for blue-chip conglomerates with complex logistics makeover N3 million monthly depending on company size.
16. Real Estate Agents/Brokers
As the population of Lagos swells exponentially and property prices skyrocket amid rapid urbanization, qualified real estate agents and brokers who can professionally manage sales, rentals, and advisory services are always in high demand. Top professionals are headhunted aggressively.
Entry-level agents earn around N300,000 monthly plus moderate commissions at small agencies. Experienced agents earn at least N500,000. Professionals working at top agencies earn between N800,000 and N1.5 million depending on portfolio size and deals negotiated. Leading real estate brokers earning over N2 million monthly while managing sizeable client portfolios are common. Top agency owners and independent brokers earn well over N3-5 million per month.
17. Oil and Gas Professionals
With Nigeria being highly dependent on oil exports, the sector yields handsome salaries for experienced technical experts, including Petroleum Engineers, Geologists, Rig Technicians, HSE Officers, Project Managers, Supply Chain Officers, and more.
Entry-level roles at indigenous service companies pay about N500,000 monthly. Professionals join giants like Shell, Chevron, and ExxonMobil starting at N800,000. Experienced technical staffers earn no less than N1.5 million. Those acquiring technical and managerial skills advance to over N2.5 million. Managers earn N3-5 million, while directors earn upwards of N8 million monthly, depending on role criticality and experience. The sector remains one of the highest paying in the country.
18. Event Planners
Managing social events, product launches, conferences, and exhibitions is an exciting, high-skilled career that’s always in demand due to Lagos being the events capital of West Africa. Top event management firms like Evergreen Productions, Shan Baluchi, and City Creatives are always seeking dynamic creatives.
Entry-level event associates earn around N300,000 monthly, depending on experience. Mid-level planners with 2-3 years experience earn at least N500,000. Freelance or independent professionals take home between N700,000 and N1.5 million per project. Experienced project managers at leading firms earn N1-2 million monthly. Partners at top agencies earn over N3 million depending on the size of the managed portfolio.
19. Chefs and Food Technologists
With the rapid growth of world-class restaurants, hotels, banquet halls, and cuisines in Lagos, qualified chefs and food technologists are highly valuable. Large hospitality brands like Eat N’ Go, Flavours Unique, and The Place Lagos headhunt culinary talent aggressively.
Culinary graduates start as commis chefs at N250,000 monthly. Experienced chefs working in commercial kitchens average N400,000. Certified chefs managing in-house hotel kitchens earn at least N600,000. Executive chefs in 3-5-star hotels earn between N800,000 and N1.5 million. Renowned private chef services go for over N2 million monthly. Food technologists at large manufacturers make at least N1.2 million on average.
20. Freight Forwarders
Lagos, being sub-Saharan Africa’s largest port city, means tons of imports and exports flow through daily. Hence, customs brokers and international freight forwarders certified by the Nigerian Customs Service are always needed to facilitate cross-border trade smoothly. Veteran professionals are highly sought after.
Entry-level clerks begin at N300,000 monthly at small agencies. Experienced customs brokers earn at least N500,000. Logistics specialists earn around N800,000. Accredited freight forwarding agents at licensed international firms take home N1-2 million on average. Partners and directors of top freight companies earn well over N3 million monthly depending on portfolio size. Senior government customs officials earn around N2-5 million annually, depending on their role.
How long does it take to get a job in these high-paying careers?
The time it takes to land a high-paying job in Lagos varies significantly based on the role, industry, experience level, and other factors. For fresh graduates, it typically takes 3-6 months of active job hunting involving internships, networking, and interviewing. Experienced professionals usually find suitable roles within 1-3 months. Technical fields like engineering, IT, and medical tend to have shorter hiring cycles than others requiring licensing/certification like law, accounting, or real estate brokering, which may take 6-12 months from graduation or certification.
What academic qualifications and skills are required for these top jobs?
The minimum academic requirement for most roles on this list is a Bachelor’s degree from a recognized college or polytechnic. However, many employers increasingly prefer postgraduate degrees, professional certifications, and on-the-job training opportunities. Important skills sought across sectors include communication, problem-solving, leadership, customer service, attention to detail, and digital/technical literacy, depending on the field. Proficiency in core job functions and compliance with regulatory requirements are equally critical for consideration in highly paid positions.
What other factors increase the chances of landing a high-paying job in Lagos?
Leveraging personal networks through mentorships, internships, volunteering, and professional associations plays a big role, as many roles are often not formally advertised. It also helps to specialize in industries or functions that are currently in high demand. Work experience, no matter how limited, gives candidates an edge over fresh graduates. Passion and strong interest in the sector signal seriousness to employers. Being flexible and able to relocate when opportunities arise widens the search radius. Fluent communication, negotiating, and emotional intelligence skills also make candidates more attractive.
How can one improve career growth prospects after securing a high-paying job in Lagos?
To progress further after landing a good job, it is important to take on additional responsibilities proactively, consistently exceed targets, seek developmental mentoring, and stay updated with new skills. Networking both within and outside the organization to take on hybrid roles is valuable. Obtaining specialized industry certifications demonstrates commitment. Considering part-time higher education opens up new opportunities.