All About IBPS SO Exam: Exam Pattern|Syllabus|Job Profile|



Introduction to IBPS Exam

The autonomous Institute of Banking Personnel Selection conducts the IBPS Exam and is a research-based institute that provides human resource recruitment opportunities to India’s banking sector. The RBI, Finance Ministry of India, and NIBM serve as the IBPS’s guiding and governing bodies. Furthermore, representatives from public banks and insurance firms also participate in the decision-making process in order to take action that results in a positive and value-adding outcome.  

RBI, NABARD, and public banks such as Allahabad Bank, Canara Bank, Andhra Bank, Dena Bank, Syndicate Bank, Banks of Baroda, India, Maharashtra; UCO Bank, Union Bank of India, United Bank of India, IDBI, Indian Overseas Bank, Oriental Bank of Commerce, Punjab National Bank, Punjab, Central Bank of India, Corporation Bank, and Sind Bank all consider IBPS ratings.

Common Written Examination (CWE) was started by IBPS in the year 2011 to recruit Specialist Officers (SO), Probationary Officers (PO), and Clerks in Nationalized banks. Every year, IBPS conducts over 450 examinations across multiple courses. More than a million people apply for these exams.

IBPS SO Exam 2021

Every year, the IBPS SO (Institute of Banking Personnel Selection Specialist Officer Exam) is held to select candidates for various scale I officer positions in public sector banks. This is an online test. The IBPS SO Exam Pattern can differ depending on the post. IBPS SO is conducted into two stages: preliminary and mains examinations, followed by an interview round. Both the IBPS SO Prelims and the IBPS SO Mains are computer-based exams. The IBPS SO Prelims Exam is a multiple-choice (MCQ) examination.

IBPS SO Recruitment 2021

IBPS SO recruits the officers for the post of Rajbhasha Adhikari and Law Officer, IT Officer, Agriculture Field Officer, HR/Personnel Officer, and Marketing Officer. The 2021 notification for the same is going to be released shortly by IBPS.

The following table shows the six posts for which IBPS SO Recruitment 2021 will be done. 

IBPS Specialist Officer Posts
1. I.T. Officer (Scale I)
2. Agricultural Field Officer (Scale I)
3. Rajbhasha Adhikari (Scale I)
4. Law Officer (Scale I)
5. HR/Personnel Officer (Scale I)
6. Marketing Officer (Scale I)

IBPS SO Exam Pattern 2021

The IBPS SO exam pattern for 2021 is the same for selecting candidates for Rajsabha Adhikari Scale I and Law Officer. The exam pattern for all other posts differs from that of the Law Officer and Rajsabha Adhikari Officer. The IBPS SO Mains Exam will have just one section, i.e. of Professional Knowledge.

The Prelims exam marks will not be included in the final selection process. The final allotment will be based on a combined score from the Mains Exam and the Interview process in the ratio of 80:20.

IBPS SO Prelims Exam Pattern

For Rajsabha Adhikari and Law Officer Scale I

Serial NoSectionNo. of QuestionsTotal MarksDuration
1.Reasoning505040 minutes
2.English Language502540 minutes
3.General Awareness with Special Reference to Banking Industry505040 minutes
Total150125120 minutes

For other Specialist Officers (Agriculture Field Officer, Marketing Officer (Scale I), HR/Personnel Officer, IT Officer Scale I

Serial NoSectionNo. of QuestionsTotal MarksDuration
1.Reasoning505040 minutes
2.English Language502540 minutes
3.Quantitative Aptitude505040 minutes
Total150125120 minutes

Note: You must qualify in each of the three sections by achieving the minimum cut-off marks set by IBPS. A sufficient number of candidates as determined by IBPS based on requirements will be shortlisted for the Online Main Examination.

IBPS SO Mains Exam Pattern

For the Post of Law Officer

Name of TestNumber of QuestionsMaximum MarksMedium of ExamDuration
Professional Knowledge Related to Law6060English & Hindi45 minutes

For the Post of Rajbhasha Adhikari

Name of TestNumber of QuestionsMaximum MarksMedium of ExamDuration
Professional Knowledge(Objective)4560English & Hindi30 minutes
Professional Knowledge(Descriptive)2English & Hindi30 minutes

For the Post of IT Officer

Name of TestNumber of QuestionsMaximum MarksMedium of ExamDuration
Professional Knowledge Related to IT6060English & Hindi45 minutes

For the Post of Agriculture Field Officer

Name of TestNumber of QuestionsMaximum MarksMedium of ExamDuration
Professional Knowledge Related to Agriculture6060English & Hindi45 minutes

For the Post of Marketing Officer

Name of TestNumber of QuestionsMaximum MarksMedium of ExamDuration
Professional Knowledge Marketing Officer6060English & Hindi45 minutes

For the Post of HR/Personnel Officer

Name of TestNumber of QuestionsMaximum MarksMedium of ExamDuration
Professional Knowledge Related to HR6060English & Hindi45 minutes

Note: Penalty for wrong answers applies to both Prelims and Mains exam. For every wrong answer, one-fourth or 0.25 of the marks allocated to that question will be deducted as a penalty. There will be no penalty if a question is left blank, i.e. no answer is marked by the candidate.

IBPS SO Interview Process 2021

Eligible applicants are called for a Personal Interview after passing the IBPS SO Mains exam. Personal Interview plays an important role in the final selection of IBPS SO. It has a weightage of 20% on the merit list. One must perform well in the IBPS SO Interview.

IBPS SO Prelims Syllabus 2021

The IBPS SO syllabus gives an idea of the relevant topics to be covered. The syllabus is similar to the IBPS PO syllabus. To prepare well one must be aware of the areas he/she needs to cover. In the table below we have discussed the IBPS SO prelims syllabus.

English LanguageReading Comprehension
Tenses Rules
Cloze Test(Fill in the blanks)
Paragraph Jumbles
Idioms & Phrases
Error Detection
Multiple Meanings(Contextual Usage)
Paragraph Completion
Reasoning AbilityLogical Reasoning
Alphanumeric Series
Ranking and Order
Alphabet Combination
Data Sufficiency
Reasoning Inequalities
Seating Arrangements
Picture Series PuzzlesTabulation
Coding and Decoding
Assertion and Reason
Statement, Argument, and Assumption
Word Formation
Quantitative AptitudeSimplification and Approximation
Profit and Loss
Mixtures and Alligations
Simple and Compound Interest
Surds and Indices
Work and Time
Time and Distance Equations
Mensuration: Cylinder, Cone, Sphere, and Cuboid
Data Interpretation
Ratio And Proportion
Number Systems
Series and Sequences
Permutation and Combination
Measures of Central Tendency and Variation
General Awareness, Economy and Banking KnowledgeFinancial Knowledge
Banking Awareness
Basic Economics
Current Events of National and International Importance with focus on financial news
General Knowledge on various topics of importance to financial institutions

IBPS SO Mains Syllabus 2021

The IBPS SO Mains syllabus includes topics related to the discipline for which the applicant has applied. The Institute/conducting body does not specify the IBPS SO Syllabus for Mains in detail.

These topics were identified after a thorough review of previous years’ IBPS SO Exam Papers. The following table summarises the comprehensive IBPS SO Syllabus for each specialization.

IT OfficerDatabase Management Systems; Data Communication and Networking; Operating Systems; Software Engineering; Data Structures; Embedded Systems and Microprocessors; Computer Organization; Object-Oriented Programming
Agriculture OfficerBasics of Crop; Production and Horticulture; Agronomy, Irrigation and Seed Science; Agricultural Economics and Practices; Soil resources; Animal Husbandry; Agroforestry; Ecology; Government Schemes related to Agriculture
Marketing OfficerBasics of Marketing Management; Brand Management; Advertising, Public Relations, and Sales; Retail Business; Business Ethics; Market Segmentation; Market Research and Forecasting; Product Life Cycle; Management; Corporate Social Responsibility; Marketing Strategies in Services Marketing
Law OfficerBanking Regulations; Compliance and Legal Aspects; Relevant Law and Orders related to negotiable instruments, securities, foreign exchange;
Prevention of Money-laundering, Limitation Act;
Consumer Protection Act;
Securitization and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest Act;
Banking Ombudsman;
Laws and Actions with a direct link to Banking Sector;
Bankers Book Evidence ActDebt Recovery Tribunals Act
HR/Personnel OfficerHuman Resource Development; Business policy and strategic analysis; Transnational Analysis; Training and Development; Recruitment and Selection; Rewards and Recognition; Business Policy and Strategic Analysis; Grievance and Conflict Management; Performance Management and Appraisals
Rajbhasha AdhikariGrammar; Error Correction; Fill in The Banks; Reading Comprehension; Letter Writing; Essay Writing

IBPS SO Job Profile

Each Specialist Officer’s job description varies depending on where they work. The types of work done by each of them are listed below.

PostWork Profile
Agriculture Field OfficerTo generate leads and promote rural banking;
Recognize the basic and financial needs of people living in rural areas;
Collaboration with other RRBs, NABARD, and other organizations;
Loan auditing and rehabilitation in rural areas
IT OfficerKeep track of the core banking system;
Manage the banking system’s technological challenges;
Create and change software;
Maintain the bank’s security infrastructure to deter cybercrime
Rajbhasha AdhikariProofread and translate important files used in the banking system;
Organization of language-related seminars;
Promote and train personnel in the local language
Law OfficerHandle any of the bank’s legal affairs;
Represent the bank in the event of a dispute;
Keep an eye out for mistakes and the integrity of the banking system
HR/Personnel OfficerMaintaining the employee database; Conducting the recruitment process; Employee performance and assessment; Creating welfare programmes, promoting, and compensating all staff members
Marketing OfficerState or region-wise advertising and sales activities;
Maximize revenue through cost-effective techniques; Promote his bank, gain new clients, and bring in new business deals

IBPS SO Promotion Policy 2021

All qualified applicants selected for Scale-I and Scale-II positions can receive training, seminars, and assessments to help them develop their skills and become eligible for promotions. The following is a list of the hierarchies that are followed in IBPS SO promotions.

  • Junior Management- Scale 1, Officer/ Assistant Manager
  • Junior Management- Scale 2, Manager
  • Middle Management- Scale 3, Senior Manager
  • Senior Management- Scale 4, Chief Manager
  • Senior Management- Scale 5, Assistant General Manager
  • Top Management- Scale 6, Deputy General Manager
  • Top Management- Scale 7, General Manager

IBPS SO Salary In Hand 2021

Successful IBPS SO applicants will be appointed to the Junior Management Grade Scale I Cadre. Many of the positions have identical pay scales. IBPS SO Basic Pay is Rs 23,700. IBPS SO pay scale is 23700-980(7)-30560-1145(2)-32850-1310(7)-42020

Apart from the attractive pay, an IBPS SO is entitled to additional benefits. It covers things including a newspaper allowance, a medical allowance, an entertainment allowance, a house and furniture allowance, and so on. If you’re on the edge about whether you should prepare for the IBPS SO exam or not, take a look at Kailash Tiwari’s experience (ex-AFO at UBI) to understand what it is like to be an IBPS PO/SO.

Also Read:

List of Longest Highway in India: Updated 2021

NABARD Grade A: 60 Days Study Plan for Sure-Shot Success!

Indian States and Union Territories with their Capitals [Updated List]

Tips and Tricks to Solve Input Output Reasoning Questions

Anti-Terrorism Day 2021: Importance, Significance, and History of May 21

Get Free Online Test Series, GK updates in form of Beepedia,  as well as latest updates for Bank POBank ClerkSSC, RBI, NABARD, and Other Government Jobs.

5 8 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments