As lakhs of students prepare for the lucrative post of a Probationary Officer (PO), the competition to crack the PO Exam gets tougher every year. Bank PO is a burning profile and a coveted one among bank aspirants as it is the first stage to enter and serve as an officer in the banking industry.
Who is a Bank PO?
Like the term suggests, a PO works as a trainee in a bank for a stipulated time before being incorporated as a full-time employee. He is Junior Management Grade-1 (JMG Scale 1) officer thus often referred to as Scale-1 officer or Assistant Manager. A PO or a Management Trainee (MT) holds this position on probation.
POSTING OF A PROBATIONARY OFFICER
Having being selected as a PO for a particular bank, the PO has to now go through Induction training programs which last for 10-20 days. The duration varies from bank to bank.
After completing the training program, a PO can be posted on probation in any of the branches of the particular, anywhere in India.
Usually, the probation period is two years , during which the PO is given a wide variety of tasks to perform. Some banks also have probation period of one year only or in phases. Once the probation time is over, the officer gets a permanent posting.
ROLE OF A PROBATIONARY OFFICER
- Customer Service: The probationary officers are required to handle customers and try to provide the information and services they asked for in the bank. Opening a new account, dealing with new and old ATM cards of customers, handling deposits and loans, issuing cheque books are some of the customer service jobs that the Bank PO might have to do on a regular basis.
- Bringing business to bank:It is the responsibility of the bank PO to promote various products and schemes that the bank has in offer for its customers.
- Cash handling:Due to numerous schemes and policies introduced by the government, there has been a tremendous increase in the workload for clerical staff hence, it has become necessary for the probationary officers to look after the cash section in the banks as well. Due to the heavy footfall in the banks, the POs need to open a temporary counter in the bank to disperse cash transactions and deposits. Many banks also give responsibility of maintaining the ATMs in a particular region to the probationary officers as well.
- Clearance of Payment:Though the bank clerks are authorized with most cash transactions and payments but they need to take authorization and clearance from the Probationary Officers in case of a certain amount on cheque, DD, NEFT/RTGS and other payment models. POs also solve problems of clerks in the banks during any transaction.
- Reporting and Verification:The bank POs need to properly maintain an account on a daily basis and close it every day, matching the day to day banking activity. They also need to login to the system using their details, take print-outs of the statements, manually verify each transaction and record and check if any differences are found. Due to the introduction of core banking, it is necessary for the bank POs to report and verify the documents and information on a regular basis to the regional and zonal offices.
SALARY STRUCTURE OF A PROBATIONARY OFFICER
|DA (Dearness Allowance)||10163.63|
|CCA (City Compensatory Allowance)||870|
|Total (without HRA)||36570.38|
|HRA (House Rent Allowance)||2133.00|
|Gross with HRA||38703.38|
|Gross Annual CTC (with HRA but without leased accommodation)||5,57,640.52|
IBPS (Institute of Banking Personnel Selection) conducts the examination for Bank PO. It consists of three stages. The first phase is Common written examination, followed by Interview and the final placement. This year, the examination will be held on October 16, 22 and 23, 2016 (Preliminary Exam) and November 20, 2016 (Mains).
Age Limit: 20-30 years as on July 2016
A degree from a recognized university as on August 13, 2016
There is no specific percentage required. Passing in the degree shall suffice.
Common Written Examination
The written exam is a two-stage process- Preliminary and Main. Both are conducted through online mode. There is negative marking. (0.25 will be deducted for every wrong answer)
Preliminary Exam: There are 100 questions that need to be answered in 1 hour. IBPS fixes a cut-off score for each section and also the total score.
|SECTION||NO. OF QUESTIONS||MAXIMUM MARKS||TIME|
|English Language||30||30|| Total time of
Only candidates who qualify in the Preliminary examination will be eligible to appear for the Mains.
Main Exam: There are 200 questions that need to be answered in 2 hrs 20 minutes. Each section must be completed within the specified time period.
|SECTION||NO.OF QUESTIONS||MAXIMUM MARKS||MEDIUM OF EXAM||TIME ALLOTED|
|Reasoning||50||50||English & Hindi||40 minutes|
|English Lang.||40||40||English||30 minutes|
|Quantitative Aptitude||50||50||English & Hindi||40 minutes|
|General Awareness (special reference to banking)||40||40||English & Hindi||20 minutes|
|Computer Knowledge||20||20||English & Hindi||10 minutes|
WHO SHOULD APPLY & SCOPE
Candidates having an interest or background in commerce, finance should apply for Bank PO.
1. PO is one of the fastest career paths, as compared to other government jobs.
2. Apart from fast promotions, there are recognition and lucrative postings.
3. Many of the Chairmen of national banks started their career as Probationary Officers. Hence the job evidently has a lot to offer to those who can perform.