RRB PO or IBPS PO: Which is Better?


Competitive Exams

A government job is a dream for many! There is a good number of aspirants who dream of securing a government job for themselves. Among these, a major chunk of aspirants decides to go for banking job preparation every year. This has led to a significant increase in competition and thus has made the choice even tougher. A huge number of candidates sit for these competitive exams every year. But before you decide to prepare, you should also be aware of all the choices you have and which one to go for. There are a plethora of opportunities available which sometimes leads to a lot of bewilderment. Gathering information should be the first step which will prove a lot more useful rather than just adding yourself to the directionless bandwagon. 

Talking of banks, in particular, these are broadly divided into two categories:

  • RRBs – Regional Rural Banks
  • PSBs – Public Sector Banks

Separate exams are conducted for both of these categories and based on your preference/choice you can go for anyone or both. There are various kinds of posts against which the banks announce vacancies and based on the eligibility conditions, you can opt to apply for the following posts:

  • Bank PO (Probationary Officer)
  • Bank SO (Specialist Officer)
  • Bank Clerk (Office Assistant)

Among these, the post of PO gathers quite an attention and is preferred by many. Also, a candidate who will be applying for an SO post will automatically be eligible for PO too. Thus the high number of applicants. IBPS conducts the examination for PO for all RRBs as well as PSBs. 

Read & explore the differences and the Workload in RRB vs PSB.


IBPS not only gives one but two golden opportunities to all the aspirants who wish to work as ‘Probationary Officers’. It is up to you if you want to go for one of these or both. If you are in a dilemma regarding which one is better for you, we have listed down a few points based on which you may be able to decide a fair option for yourself.

IBPS RRB PO vs IBPS PO: Eligibility Requirements


  • If you wish to apply for the IBPS RRB PO exam, you need to possess a Bachelor’s degree in any discipline from a recognized University or its equivalent.
  • Proficiency in local language as prescribed by the participating RRBs.
  • Working knowledge of computers is also desirable.


  • If you are interested in applying to the IBPS PO exam, you need to possess a Graduation degree in any discipline from a University recognized by the Govt. Of India or any equivalent qualification recognized as such by the Central Government.

IBPS RRB PO vs IBPS PO: Exam Pattern

IBPS is the conducting authority for both RRBs & PSBs. It holds examinations to select suitable candidates for the posts of PO or RRB PO. The exams are held in various phases as follows.

IBPS RRB PO Exam Pattern

PhasesNo. of questionsMarksTime Duration
Phase 1/Prelims80 (Objective)80 45 minutes
Phase 2/Mains200 (Objective)2002 hours
Phase 3/ Interview        –100        –

IBPS PO Exam Pattern

PhasesNo. of questionsMarksTime Duration
Phase 1/Prelims100 (Objective)100 1 hour
Phase 2/Mains155 (Objective) 
02  (Descriptive English)
3 hours
30 minutes
Phase 3/ Interview        –100        –

IBPS RRB PO vs IBPS PO: Post / Designation

  • If you clear the IBPS RRB PO exam, you will be called a Scale 1 Officer.
  • If you get through the IBPS PO exam, you will be called a Probationary Officer (PO).
  • In the case of some banks, like Punjab National Bank, they prefer calling their fresh recruits as Management Trainees (MT) until they finish their probation period.

IBPS RRB PO vs IBPS PO: Job Profile

The posts being the same, you can expect the job roles to be similar too. Once you are selected to the post of Probationary Officer, in either RRB or PSB, you have similar responsibilities such as –

  • Supervising the clerical tasks 
  • Maintaining the branch’s business
  • Preparing audit reports including all the activities taking place in the bank
  • Providing and recovering loans

IBPS RRB PO vs IBPS PO: In-hand Salary

In-hand Salary of an IBPS RRB PO

  • RRBs pay their employees on the scale of 14500-600/7-18700-700/2-20100-800/7-25700.
  • The initial in-hand salary of an IBPS RRB PO is within the range of Rs 29,000 – Rs 33,000 at 100% DA.

In-hand Salary of an IBPS PO

  • An IBPS PO or Probationary Officer is entitled to receive a starting basic salary of Rs 23,700 / month.
  • An IBPS PO is also entitled to a ‘Dearness Allowance’ of Rs. 13,000 (around 55% of the basic salary). 

IBPS RRB PO vs IBPS PO: Career Growth/Promotions


  • RRBs also offer enough opportunities to their employees by carrying out promotional exams/Interviews.
  • An RRB Officer Scale 1 career path may look like this: Assistant Manager – Deputy Manager – Branch Manager – Senior Branch Manager – Chief Manager – Assistant General Manager – DGM – General Manager


  • Once you are selected as a PO in a commercial or public sector bank, you will get ample opportunities to move ahead in your career. You can get promoted to the post of Manager, once you complete your initial 3 years through a written exam & Interview. 
  • The promotion grades are Manager (Scale II), Senior Manager (Scale III), Chief Manager (Scale IV), AGM (Scale V), DGM (Scale VI) and GM (Scale VII). After that Executive Director and CMD (Chairman and Managing Director) are appointed by the Govt. of India.

IBPS RRB PO vs IBPS PO: Place of Postings

  • One being a ‘rural bank’ will work towards providing facilities to the rural areas, thus most of your postings can be expected in the rural areas.
  • Commercial banks mostly cater to urban areas but also have been expanding to rural areas now. So depending on the scale, you might get transferred to far-flung areas.

IBPS RRB PO / IBPS PO: Which One to Choose?

We hope that there must be some clarity now and you should be able to differentiate between both these job posts. Although these are quite similar, there are some differences when it comes to the work scenario and the place of postings. It is for you to decide now which one would be better for you on the basis of your personal preferences or circumstances. You have to think about how you wish your career path to be like. Your future will depend on the choice you make today.

IBPS PO / IBPS RRB PO Preparation 

Whichever job post you choose for yourself, you will need proper guidance. Right guidance will lead you to your desired career. You can check out our online courses for IBPS PO & IBPS RRB PO which are carefully curated following the latest exam pattern and syllabus. These will assist you in planning your time in a proper manner.

You can also attempt free mock tests on our website and analyze your preparation.

At ixamBee you can find free Online Test Series, GK updates in the form of BeePedia, as well as latest updates for Bank PO, Bank Clerk, SSC, RBI, NABARD, and Other Government Jobs.

Also Read:

IBPS RRB 2021 Exam Preparation

IBPS RRB PO/Clerk 2021: 30 Days Preparation Strategy

IBPS PO English Descriptive Paper

Test Yourself: Computer Knowledge Questions (Mixed) for SBI Clerk Mains, IBPS PO, and SBI PO

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