Every year, lakhs of candidates apply for the SBI PO exams, to land their dream job as a probationary officer for SBI. The rising competition shows that this post is high in demand and is considered to be one of the most respectable and reputed jobs in the country. The perks that come along with this job are desired by many aspirants.
Typically, bank exams are conducted by the Institute of Banking Personnel Selection (IBPS) for public sector banks. However, a few banks such as SBI conduct their own examination. In the SBI PO exam, there are three phases – Prelim exam, Main exam, and Interview. Candidates need to clear all three phases to be appointed as probationary officer at a branch of SBI across the country.
The post of a probationary officer is an entry-level position wherein selected candidates undergo a probation/training period of 2 years. They are tasked with various responsibilities, including –
- Cash handling – When there’s a rush and long queue in the bank, the probationary officer would also have to perform clerical duties, along with bank clerks. In case the cashier or ATM loader is not present, the officer would have to take over their place. Probationary officers are trained for all of these tasks because the goal is to keep customers satisfied in every situation.
- Customer service – Probationary officers are responsible for providing customers with information, deposits, loans, ATM cards, opening new bank accounts, and other such activities.
- Payment clearance – Payments in the form of cheques, NEFT, RTGS, and DD beyond a certain amount need to be authorized and cleared by the probationary officer.
- Promoting products and services – As probationary officers, candidates need to bring in new business by promoting the products and services that the bank is offering. This includes fixed deposits, mutual funds, and credit cards.
If you want to kickstart your career as SBI PO, you need certain skills and abilities to be successful, including –
- Having an organized mind – As an SBI PO, your career would be fast-paced and you will have a lot of responsibilities. You will be handling multiple tasks at the same time. Hence, an SBI PO should have an organized mind. They need to pay attention to details and observe the important things, as well as the irregularities or wrongdoings. They are responsible for correcting mistakes before they turn into a major problem. Hence, they need to have excellent organizational skills so that they can maintain and manage bank records, documentation, and other tasks with ease.
- Efficiency – Another important skill that an SBI PO should possess is efficiency. They should be able to handle money matters at the bank easily and accurately. Accuracy and efficiency is a must since even a little mistake such as one misplaced note or miscalculation can create a major problem for their bank. By being efficient, they can do their work properly and help the bank function smoothly as well as avoid facing any time constraints.
- Cooperative and friendly – SBI PO’s are posted in different branches of the bank that they’re allotted, after selection. There, they would be directly handling customers, other employees and stakeholders. To be successful, they need to be cooperative and friendly, while dealing with others. They will be able to gain the trust of their clients and investors by doing so.
- Communication skills – Another very important skill that an SBI PO must have to succeed in their career is communication skills. It has become a necessity in not just the banking field, but all domains. Since, SBI PO’s directly deal with customers, stakeholders, and clients, having excellent verbal as well as written communication skills is a must. They should be able to put across their point clearly without causing any confusion or misunderstanding.
- Leadership skills – SBI PO’s need to exhibit leadership skills and take charge if they want to go forward on their career path. Showcasing your leadership skills can help garner respect from your superiors as well as your peers. It also gains confidence from customers.
- Awareness – One of the most important skills that you need is to be aware of the latest happenings in the banking sector as well as general awareness. The skill to anticipate future business developments and financial trends is what will make you stand ahead of your competitors. This skill is vital for protecting or expanding an area of your bank’s portfolio.
- Analytical skills – In today’s time, no matter what your career is, analytical skills are a must. These skills are required to identify patterns and trends to derive conclusions from heaps of data. With analytical skills, PO’s can predict market trends and fluctuations as they would be dealing with financial matters at the bank. Hence, they need to demonstrate analytical as well as mathematical skills to showcase their ability and stand out.
- Quick learner – As we move forward, new technology has been introduced in banking functions such as e-banking facilities and others. SBI PO’s need to be quick learners and stay up-to-date with all the latest technology advancements and happenings in the banking world. They need to understand and adapt to the new technology and processes to ensure that all banking operations run smoothly and there is no interference.
- Management skills – SBI PO’s need to have management skills because probationary officers are required to manage a lot of responsibilities during their tenure as an officer. From checking irregularities to managing financial documentation every day, probationary officers need to handle each task efficiently, at the same time. To do this successfully, having management skills is a must. They need to use management skills to keep the bank functioning smoothly.
These are the skills and abilities that an SBI PO needs to succeed in their career as a probationary officer. If you are an SBI PO aspirant, click here for more info about the exam, how to prepare for it, and crack it easily.