What is superannuation? How is it calculated?

Superannuation is a retirement benefit paid to an employee by their employer after completing five years of continuous service. The amount of superannuation depends upon the wage and salary received by the employee. Maximum contribution towards a Superannuation fund is limited to 12% of basic + DA. It’s pretty straightforward how to calculate superannuation. Superannuation is one of the three components of remuneration: inclusion and Exclusion.

If someone is in the first few years of their career and earning a low amount, it may be that superannuation isn’t contributing a large portion of their overall remuneration. Over time, however, as they get promoted and take on more responsibility in their job, it is easier for them to find that superannuation starts to have a more significant impact on their income.

In addition to being tax-free and providing for retirement, superannuation can also be used for other essential things such as buying a house or paying for university studies.


Superannuation is calculated by adding the salary, allowances, and bonuses. Other payments that are included in your superannuation include:

  • leave loading
  • overtime
  • shift work penalties 
  • Special payments like extended service leave or back pay.

Non-taxable payments such as government pensions, parental leave payments, and scholarships aren’t added to your taxable income when calculating your superannuation.


It is noticeable that the amount of superannuation is not included in salary calculation. It’s also not included in the calculation of tax or pension. This means that if someone has a job with a large amount of superannuation, it won’t affect how much they pay daily.

It’s important to note that this exclusion only applies to Australian citizens working full-time within Australia and earning over $450 per week (that’s $22,475 per year).

How to calculate superannuation?

If someone is confused about how to calculate superannuation?

 Calculating superannuation is a simple process. In Australia, the average salary is $1,316 per week. Only half of this is subject to tax, so it is assumed that 50% of a person’s income will be taxed each week and saved for them to calculate superannuation.

To calculate how much money will come out of the paycheck each week:

  • Take 50% of what you earn per week (for example, if someone earns $1,316, then take 50% = 568)
  • Multiply this by 52 weeks in a year (568 x 52 = 28176)

This figure represents how much money should be removed from every paycheck over one year and put toward the superannuation account.

The total amount of superannuation may change according to the employment type.

The amount of superannuation received is calculated based on the employment type and salary. For example, suppose someone is a blue-collar worker. In that case, their superannuation will be calculated based on their annual salary and not on the number of years they have worked for the company or organization. This is because blue-collar workers usually have lower wages than their white-collar counterparts.

However, suppose someone works as a manager or executive within an organization. In that case, their superannuation will be calculated based on their annual income and the number of years they have served in that role at that particular company or organization. This is why managers and executives earn higher salaries than blue-collar workers, so they may receive more money when calculating their superannuation benefits.


The superannuation amount depends on the employee’s job and salary. If a person works as an independent contractor, superannuation does not apply. If a person is hired for a temporary contract, he can only avail of superannuation after 12 months.


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