Among all public sector bank exams, SBI Clerk and SBI PO are the most anticipated ones. Every year, aspirants in huge numbers take these tests. You get to start your banking career with the top-rated public sector bank in the country. An SBI Clerk or PO earns high respect in society and enjoys added benefits with a handsome salary.
The conducting authority of both the exams is SBI itself. Entry-level post of SBI PO is that of an officer rank, whereas an SBI Clerk / Junior Associate is more of a clerical post. This article will compare SBI Clerk and SBI PO jobs to understand how the two are similar or different. We will discuss the exam pattern, perks and benefits, and career growth after cracking either two exams.
SBI Clerk vs. SBI PO: Exam pattern
For both SBI Clerk and SBI PO, candidates have to appear for two consecutive online CBT tests, namely –
- Preliminary test
- Mains exam
After that, qualified candidates are further called for subsequent rounds for final selection.
SBI Clerk vs SBI PO: Prelims Exam Pattern
The preliminary round of SBI Clerk and SBI PO is of the same pattern, only the type of questions and level of difficulty differs. SBI PO Prelims is considerably more challenging than SBI Clerk.
|Sections||No. of questions||Marks||Time|
|English language||30||30||20 mins|
|Quantitative aptitude||35||35||20 mins|
|Reasoning ability||35||35||20 mins|
- Candidates get an hour for the test with a time limit of 20 minutes for each section.
- 100 MCQs are asked each of 1 mark.
- A wrong attempt results in a negative marking of 0.25.
SBI PO Main Exam Pattern vs Clerk Main Exam Pattern
Mains Exam Pattern
There are considerable differences between SBI Clerk and SBI PO main exams with respect to marks distribution, time allotment and subject matter.
SBI Clerk Mains
|English language||40||40||35 mins|
|Quantitative aptitude||50||50||45 mins|
|Reasoning ability||50||60||45 mins|
|General awareness||50||50||35 mins|
After qualifying the SBI Clerk mains exam, candidates are hailed for the interview round. This may include a language proficiency test of the vernacular languages taken up in 10+2. Subsequently, a final merit list is published of the selected candidates.
SBI PO Mains
|English language||35||40||40 mins|
|Data analysis & interpretation||35||60||45 mins|
|Reasoning ability||45||60||60 mins|
|General awareness||40||40||35 mins|
|Descriptive test||1||50||30 mins|
The descriptive test is conducted separately on the same day as the main exam. It is an English proficiency test of 30 minutes, of 50 marks.
SBI Clerk vs. SBI PO: Perks and Benefits
For both SBI Clerk or SBI PO, there are several benefits which they can enjoy.
|Perks||SBI Clerk||SBI PO|
|Eligibility (Age limit)||20 – 28 years||21 – 30 years|
|Salary||Basic pay of INR 19900 (2 advance increments included)
In-hand salary = INR 30000 (approx.)
|Basic pay of INR 27620 (4 advance increments included)
In-hand salary = INR 40000 (approx.)
|Probation period||Minimum 6 months||Up to 2 years|
|Additional benefits||● Dearness allowance,
● Medical allowance,
● Leave fare,
|● Dearness allowance,
● House rent allowance or rental lease,
● City Compensatory Allowance,
● Medical allowance,
|Working hours||10 am – 5 pm||10 am – 6 pm|
|Promotion||By internal exams||After 2 – 3 years|
SBI Clerk vs. SBI PO: Responsibilities
After the appointment, an SBI PO official will be under probation for a year or two. During this period, he/she will be under training to understand different aspects of the banking domain. Initially, they will take care of the public relations, handle customer service-related issues, look after cards, DD, cheque book issuance, etc.
After completing the probation period, a PO will be posted as the Assistant Bank Manager in the junior management. Work will now include document verification, cash management, and leading a team of junior associates. With increasing time in service, the officers might also have to look into loan processing and approvals, budgeting, marketing, planning and managing investments.
An SBI Clerk, on the other hand, will undergo a training period of 6 months minimum. Their job responsibilities will include account opening of visiting customers, pass-book updation and assistance, KYC verification, cash deposit, cheque receipts and cheque book delivery, customer service, etc. During the six months, they will be trained rigorously to be efficient in their work after the appointment. An SBI PO is a level ahead of the SBI Clerk.
SBI Clerk vs. SBI PO: Career growth
The career growth of an SBI PO is much faster than that of an SBI Clerk. An SBI PO can reach higher management authorities by promotions. After being posted as Assistant Bank Manager, an SBI PO is promoted every 2-3 years based on their efficiency and performance. The promotion ladder is as follows for SBI PO.
- Deputy manager
- Chief manager
- Assistant General Manager
- Deputy General Manager
- General Manager
- Chief General manager
- Deputy Managing Director
On the contrary, SBI Clerk promotion is done in two ways, one, by in-cadre advertisements and the other, promotion to officer level. Thus, the promotions are done thrice in the career of an SBI Clerk.
|After 10 years in service||Senior Assistant|
|After 20 years in service||Special Assistant|
|After 30 years in service||Senior Special Assistant|
SBI Clerk promotion to officer rank can be granted on the basis of a written internal examination. The exam can be given after 3, 6 or 12 years of being in the service.
|1.||After 3 years in service||By Internal examination||Trainee Officer|
|Gradually, a Trainee officer can be promoted to Middle Management Grade-II posts.|
|2.||After 6 years/12 years||By Internal examination||Junior Management Grade I|
|Thereafter, they can be appointed to higher ranks as in the case of SBI PO, subject to the age constraint.|
No doubt, SBI Clerk and SBI PO are equally reputed. If you want to kickstart your career in the banking sector, you must appear for these exams. It is easier to get through SBI Clerk than SBI PO. But if you are someone looking for constant growth, you must attempt SBI PO. The salary package is higher, and so is the pace and extent of promotion. We hope this article has helped you differentiate between these two exams.