Post C: Interview with Zan about work and cost of living in Jakarta

Jakarta is a massive city densely populated with people and high-rise buildings. The city also holds a reputation for having chaotic traffic.

I interviewed Indonesia native, Bagus who is 22 years old. He works in Jakarta full-time as a Senior Assistant in Business Support Division at a reputable Indonesia company. He also recently started his own business, running a coffee shop on the side. Bagus described to me his typical day at work, “normally If you come to work before 9am you can leave an hour early. They let you have a give you time to eat breakfast until 10am and then you work until 12pm and take an hour lunch break. You start work again from 1pm until 4pm or 5pm”. Bagus made it seem like his company’s work culture was really relaxed. Another interesting thing he mentioned was about the presence of foreigners working in his company, “my boss is Indian and the company is owned by a Japanese businessman”. It appears a lot of foreigner’s work in Jakarta, often employed by foreign companies which means the workplace is surprisingly multicultural.

Bagus described to me his typical day at work, “normally If you come to work before 9am you can leave an hour early. They let you have a breakfast until 10am and then you work until 12pm and take an hour lunch break. You start work from 1pm until 4pm or 5pm”. Bagus made it seem like his company’s work culture was really relaxed. Another interesting thing he mentioned was about the presence of foreigners working in his company, “my boss is Indian and the company is owned by a Japanese businessman”. It appears a lot of foreigner’s work in Jakarta, often employed by foreign companies which means the workplace is surprisingly multicultural.

An interesting fact about Bagus is that he used to work and study in Australia so he would compare his work experience. “Do you know how much I earn a month?” to which I exclaimed “no”, not expecting anything to surprise me, “when I started working, I only earned around 300AUD a month”. This was a shock to hear as it is half the amount of the average starting salary in Australian is $45,000-$60,000AUD a year for a white-collar job. He proceeded to tell me about how he manages the coffee shop he runs on the side. “I work full-time Monday to Friday during the week and handle the coffee shop on weekends”. Bagus is a really hard-working individual, making ends meet as a young Indonesian male who is a year or two out of studying. He employs a handful of part-time and full-time employees, stating that he pays them roughly $150AUD for part-timers and $200AUD for full-timers a month.

A typical work day is 7-8 hours in Indonesia. According to studies the average wage in Indonesia is is Rp. 3.750.000,00. While the minimum wage in Jakarta is Rp. 3.355.000,00 (Average Salary in Indonesia 2019).  The cost of living in Indonesia is 49.85% lower than Australia (Numbeo 2019). It seems understandable that the average salary is lower as the cost of living is significantly lower shown statistically. The average salary in Indonesia is incredibly low compared to countries like Australia or America.

References

Average Salary in Indonesia 2019, Emolument, viewed 31st January 2019 https://www.emolument.com/salary-reports/locations/indonesia/7222

Cost of Living in Indonesia, Numbeo, viewed 31st January 2019 <https://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/country_result.jsp?country=Indonesia&gt;

Cost of Living for Expatriates in Jakarta 2016, Indo Indians, viewed 31st January 2019 <https://www.indoindians.com/cost-of-living-for-expatriates-in-jakarta/&gt;

Name of interviewee has been changed to protect his identity.

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