Banking As a Profession

For Young graduate, an attractive offer after college is banking profession. It remains in this most wanted job position for years and it is because it enjoys much respect and prestige in the society. After the extinction of BSRB the only window to enter into this well sought career is Probationary Officers (PO) Exams conducted by individual banks. Banks inducts eligible graduates by this exam for training for a probational period of two years. The selected candidates performance during the probation period will decide their position after training. Different Banks recruit probationary officers during different periods in the year. Students has to keep on watch about the notifications and should be alert on applying promptly.

Career as a Probationary Officer

Pursuing Career as a probationary officer is a unique experience in itself. But it is the most common and highly sought after question that "what a Probationary Officer really do?".After the selection and till the date of joining the same question was making my mind puzzle. Hence I would like to share some of my experience with all of you looking after banks as a career option. I would be sharing my day to day experience within the bank so stay with us ...


A New Signage with New Look

Recently with the merger of associate banks & Bhartiya Mahila Bank with the State Bank of India, it adopted a new look recognising the need of present modern times.

Taking a clue from foreign banks and private counterparts like HSBC, HDFC, ICICI etc., State Bank of India decided to cut short to SBI. It gave try to some refreshed set of blue while doing away with the full name along with the tag line that reads 'The Banker to every Indian'. 

The historical keyhole symbol, designed in 70s by Shekhar Kamath from National Institute of Design (NID) has been kept, which remains an identity of SBI now. 


Public Sector Banks - Seniority Scales & Designation

Many a times, it has been seen that aspirants of joining Public Sector Banks have some doubt in their minds regarding the scales and designation in the Banks. The seniority levels in the Banks are as under:

i. Junior Management Grade Scale (JMGS) - I: Assistant Manager

when a person is recruited in bank as a Probationary Officer (PO), he will be absorbed in JMGS - I, he is called a PO because he is in probation.

ii. Middle Management Grade Scale (MMGS) - II: Deputy Manager
iii.  Middle Management Grade Scale (MMGS) - III: Manager
iv. Scale IV: Chief Manager
v. Scale V: Assistant General Manager (AGM)
vi. Scale VI: Deputy General Manager (DGM)
vii. Scale VII: General Manager (GM)
iix. Scale IIX: Chief General Manager (CGM)

Thereafter top most positions in SBI, there is Deputy Managing Director (DMD), Managing Director (MD) and Chairman.

Top most senior positions in different banks are named differently in other banks. 

Junior India Based Officers (JIBO) - SBI foreign posting opportunity

As an officer in State Bank of India, all officers get opportunity to work in its foreign offices by appearing in internal competitive exam called Junior India Based Officers (JIBO) examination. It has two stages, firstly one has to appear in an written examination and those got passed will face a high level interview committee. At present, SBI is having a very good foreign presence, as of now a total of 190 foreign offices are located in 36 different countries. Any officer up to Scale III i.e. Manager can appear for JIBO. Its now like that senior officers after Scale III can't go foreign offices. Actually, for Scale IV and above senior officers, there is different pattern of selection. 

A New Dawn - Merger with State Bank of India

It was almost a new morning for all of associate bank's employees on 1st April 2017, when all remaining associate banks got merged with the parent bank i.e. State Bank of India. For information, initially State Bank of India was having 7 associate banks. Out of these seven banks, State bank of Indore (Indore Bank) and State Bank of Saurashtra (SBS) got merged officially with State Bank of India (SBI) on 26th August 2010 & 13th August 2008 respectively. The remaining Banks were State Bank of Patiala (SBP), State Bank of Bikaner & Jaipur (SBBJ), State Bank of Travancore (SBT), State Bank of Hyderabad (SBH) and State Bank of Mysore (SBM), which all got merged on 1st April, 2017. It was a thoughtful merger, having two shots in one go. First, Govt. wanted a world level bank from India. After this mammoth merger, SBI entered in the list of World top 50 banks and secondly SBI would be able to finance those big ventures, which it was unable due to its limited size. In addition to all these five, Bhartiya Mahila Bank (BMB) was also merged with SBI on 1st April 2017.  


SBI Probationary Officer Recruitment Drive: Rush ! Only nine days remaining.

State Bank of India, the biggest Bank of India by branches and ATMs across the country has called for a big recruitment drive with having mood of selecting 1897 talented people on board vide advt. no. CRPD/PO/2014-15/01. The State Bank of India has already indicated that the last hour rush can be very high and generally the kind of organizations like SBI, does not increase its last dates like our State Governments Recruitment Boards. The online registration will remain open till 25th April and now only nine days are remaining for registration.

The candidate will have to face two phases of exam for getting selected. First phase would be including Objective Test of 200 marks containing four different sections (English Language, General Awareness; Marketing & Computers, Data Analysis & Interpretation, Reasoning (High Level) and Descriptive Exam of 50 marks of English Language, whereas later a group discussion and interview would be held for selected candidates.

The whole marks secured from both the two phases will be given out of 100 marks with giving weightage of 75:25 respectively. State Bank of India has given reminders about registering as soon as possible as very high number of people would be participating for the exam. Surely SBI is making good marketing by mentioning the package roughly about Rs. 840000/- per annum (lease amount mentioned considering 1897 will be posted in Mumbai only). 




You must have heard of the SBI again hiring 1837 Probationary Officers. The pay scale would be Rs. 14500-25700, but you must know that a probationary officer would get 4 added increments if gets selected in SBI only from the starting month itself. The bank has increased its lease amount last year making Rs. 29000 in Mumbai city for a starting PO, making jealous of other Bank's PO's receiving around 7-8 thousand INR. But you must have seen a caution there in the advertisement, which in itself says that the reasoning part would be of expert level (High level), which was never seen in last time advertisements.

So start preparing tough as the competition is going to be immense high. Last time it was 1100 per vacancy; this time it could be more than 1500, when all down traded Chartered Accountants CAs and B-techs are eyeing the landing place.


Chaudhuri leaves SBI merger for successor

State Bank of India chairman , retiring  by the end of this  month, has left the decision on more  of associate banks to his .

In her first formal interaction with journalists after becoming chairperson,  said the bank’s Asset/Liability Committee will take a final decision on cutting or raising rates. On consolidation within the group, she said the merger of associate banks was a long process. It also needed capital and half the financial year was over. The process might start this year but completion might not take place. Pratip Chaudhuri, her predecessor, had left the decision in this regard to his successor.

Earlier, it had been stated that SBI was to announce in September the name of the next associate bank it would be merging with itself. A panel headed by A Viswanathan, managing director, for merger of the associate banks has given  a report, preparing the groundwork and economic logic.

SBI has five associates — State Bank of Hyderabad, State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur, State Bank of Travancore, State Bank of Mysore and State Bank of Patiala. Two others, State Bank of Indore and State Bank of Saurashtra, were merged with SBI in 2008 and 2010, respectively.

The new chairperson has also proposed removing the cap of two transfers on ‘spouse grounds’ for both female and male employees. She is also considering introducing a longer sabbatical (leave on loss of pay) for employees, especially women, similar to the scheme she introduced in SBI Caps, when she was heading it. At present, SBI Capital offers leave without pay for up to six years.


Banks on two days off - wait of November

So awaited month of Nov. 2012 (for pay scale revision) is coming augmented with Employees of public sector banks are striking work for two days starting today i.e. Wednesday. This strike is as said “against reform proposals that would ease mergers and allow more foreign and private capital into the sector”.

It is also recommended in reforms agenda that wage hikes should be bank-specific and not industry-wide, as is the present practice. Whatsoever, the other thing is that we have got two days off and I got time for my favorite blog. These days, so many vacancies are out in Banking sector in clerical, officers and in specialist officers cadre. With a systematic and concentrated approach, it is not a big deal to prepare and crack these exams. SBI associate Banks i.e. State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur (SBBJ), State Bank of Maysore (SBJ), State Bank of Patiala (SBP), State Bank of Hyderabad (SBH) and State Bank of Travancore (SBT) are looking up for a good number of clerical staff (7740 no.) this year. State Bank of Saurashtra (SBS) and State Bank of Indore (SBOI) has already been merged with parent i.e. State Bank of India. News is SBI's Management Board has approved this month for merging one associate this year itself. Let us see, what happens next.


Got confirmed ! Assistant Manager

As the State Bank Group and many other PSBs would require a newly joined officer to undergo probation of 2 years, other Banks in India like Bank of India etc. are having this stipulation for 1 year. During the probation period, an officer is officially called 'Probationary Officer' in the rank of 'Asstt. Manager'. But the same tag remains there for outside people and they will term you 'Probationary Officer' even after 2 years.

After that probation period (during which you can be expelled, giving a suitable reason like Misbehavior at any time, but it is rare), a confirmation exam is held in few Banks (State Bank conducts it and SBI even provides direct promotion chance to Scale II on the basis of performance in this exam) after passing of which probationary officer gets confirmed as an "Assistant Manager".

Our batch of probationary officers got confirmed (including ME) w.e.f. 1st July 2011 except 4 probationary officers because of one or other reasons.

Sigh of relief!

Yup, I am able to post again. These days I have been posted in showcase arena of CWG i.e. New Delhi. I have got final posting here as Credit Analyst working in Commercial Net Work (CNW) of our Bank which is regarded a good posting as we are directly in touch with the corporates instead of Personal Banking Customers (PBCs).