IBPS SO Exam 2024 – Posts, Eligibility, Exam Pattern, Syllabus

The Institute of Banking Personnel Selection (IBPS) holds a Common Recruitment Process (CRP) every year to select candidates for Specialist Officer (SO) posts in various participating public sector banks. The IBPS SO exam offers lucrative career opportunities for candidates from both banking and non-banking backgrounds.

Some of the top reasons behind the huge number of applicants for IBPS SO exam are job security, good salary package and allowances, defined career progression channels and attractive work-profile. This makes it one of the most sought-after banking exams in India.

This article covers all the key details regarding the IBPS SO recruitment such as important dates, eligibility norms, posts covered, exam pattern, syllabus, salary and perks attached and preparatory tips for candidates.

IBPS SO 2024 – Important Dates

Here are the tentative dates for IBPS SO 2024 exam:

  • Notification Release Date – September 2024
  • Online Registration Opening Date – September 2024
  • Online Registration Closing Date – October 2024
  • Admit Card Download Date – November 2024
  • Online Exam Date – 26th and 27th December 2024
  • Result Declaration – January 2025
  • Interview Date – February 2025
  • Final Allotment Result – April 2025

IBPS may make changes in the above schedule. Hence, candidates should visit the official website regularly for exam updates.

IBPS SO Posts Offered

Here is the list of common SO (Specialist Officer) posts filled by IBPS in various public sector banks:

Post Name Abbreviation Specialization Required
IT Officer ITO Information Technology
Agricultural Field Officer AFO Agriculture
Rajbhasha Adhikari RA Hindi language
Law Officer LA Law
HR/Personnel Officer HR Human Resource Management
Marketing Officer MO Marketing/Sales


The SO vacancies may vary as per banks’ requirements. IBPS may also introduce some new SO posts based on banks’ demand.

IBPS SO Eligibility criteria 2024

The essential eligibility parameters for IBPS SO recruitment are detailed below:

1. Nationality and Age limit

  • Indian citizenship
  • Age: 20-30 years

2. Educational Qualification

  • IT Officer – 4 year Engineering Degree in Computer Science/Computer Applications/IT or Post Graduate Degree in Electronics/Electronics & Telecom/Electronics & Communication/Electronics & Instrumentation/Electronics & Telecommunication/Electronics and Telecommunication/Information Technology/Information Technology & Bio-informatics/Computer Science/Computer Science & IT/Computer Science and Engineering/Computer Science & Engineering (Networking)/Computer Science & Engineering (Network Security)/Computer Science and Technology/Information Science and Engineering
  • Agricultural Field Officer – 4 year Degree (graduation) in Agriculture/ Horticulture/Animal Husbandry/Veterinary Science/ Dairy Science/ Fishery Science/ Pisciculture/ Agri. Marketing & Cooperation/ Co-operation & Banking/ Agro-Forestry
  • Rajbhasha Adhikari – Post Graduate Degree in Hindi with English as a compulsory or elective subject or Bachelor’s degree with Hindi and English as main subjects
  • Law Officer – A Bachelor Degree in Law (LLB) and enrolled as an advocate with Bar Council
  • HR/Personnel Officer – Graduate and Post Graduate degree or Two Years Full time Post Graduate degree/PG Diploma in Personnel Management/ Industrial Relations/ HR/ HRD/ Social Work/ Labour Law
  • Marketing Officer – Graduate and Post Graduate or Two Years Full time Post Graduate degree or PG Diploma in Marketing/ International Business/ International Marketing/Sales/ Marketing and Finance

3. Other Criteria

  • Proficient in computer operations
  • Fluent in English language
  • No criminal conviction or charges pending

Candidates must read the official notification carefully to ensure they meet all the eligibility conditions before applying.

IBPS SO Exam Pattern 2024

The IBPS SO selection process consists of three rounds:

1. Preliminary Exam

Section No. of Questions Marks per question Section Total
Reasoning 50 1 50
English Language 50 1 50
Quantitative Aptitude 50 1 50
Professional Knowledge 50 1 50
Total 200 200


  • Duration: Composite time of 120 minutes
  • Objective MCQs with multiple choice answers
  • No negative marking for wrong answers
  • Online exam at designated centers
  • Sectional cut-offs will apply

2. Mains Exam

Test No. of Questions Maximum Marks Duration
Professional Knowledge 45 60 45 minutes
English Language 35 35 35 minutes
Reasoning & Computer Aptitude 35 60 60 minutes
General Awareness 40 40 35 minutes
Total 155 195 175 minutes


  • Objective and descriptive type questions
  • Negative marking of 0.25 marks for every wrong objective answer

3. Interview Round

  • To be taken by participating organizations
  • Document verification will be done before the Interview
  • 100 maximum marks

IBPS SO Syllabus 2024

Having a clear understanding of the latest exam syllabus enables strategic planning for IBPS SO exam preparation.

1. Prelims Exam Syllabus

Reasoning – Alphanumeric Series, Classification, Analogy, Syllogism, Puzzles, Inequality

English Language – Reading comprehension, Para jumbles, Error spotting, Fill in the blanks, Phrase replacements, Sentence improvement

Quantitative Aptitude – Data sufficiency, Approximation, Simplification, Number Series, Ratio & Proportion, Percentage, Mixture-Allegation, Time-Distance

Professional Knowledge Section – Specialized discipline specific questions testing core concepts

The Professional Knowledge section carries high weightage. Hence, experts advise that SO aspirants should focus more on thoroughly revising this section.

2. Mains Exam Syllabus

Professional Knowledge – Advanced level concepts of specialization

English Language – Reading comprehension, Para jumbles, Cloze Test, Sentence improvement

Reasoning & Computer Aptitude– Alphanumeric series, Syllogism, Coding-Decoding, Blood Relations, Order & Ranking, Computer basics

General Awareness – Current affairs, Banking concepts, Financial markets, Govt. schemes & policies

The SO Mains syllabus covers both advanced core topics as well as questions testing verbal, logical reasoning abilities and general awareness on happenings.

IBPS SO Vacancies 2024

  • The total tentative vacancies for IBPS SO posts in various public sector banks for 2024-25 recruitment are expected to be over 1500+.
  • Highest SO vacancies are projected to be for IT Officer and Agricultural Field Officer posts.
  • Vacancies also expected for newest posts like Data Analyst, Data Scientist, Risk Manager introduced by IBPS.
  • The vacancies advertised will only be provisional. Final vacancy numbers frequently vary from initial projections.
  • SEBC/OBC/SC/ST/PWD – category wise vacancy reservations applicable as per Government of India rules.

IBPS allots the most number of vacancies to the IT Officer post. All posts provide immense career growth opportunities for candidates specialized in the respective domains.

Salary and Perks for IBPS SO Officers

Besides a good salary package, IBPS SO jobs assure excellent perks & allowances, job stability and defined career advancement avenues within public sector banks.

  • Basic Pay – Rs.23,700
  • Starting Total Salary – Rs.42,020 (including allowances like Dearness, HRA etc.)
  • Salary after 5 Years – Rs.52,795 (Scale 2)
  • Salary after 10 years – Rs. 69,810 (Scale 3)
  • Promotions up till Scale 7 offered leading to salary package of Rs.1.40 Lakhs per month
  • Other Perks –
    • Bank quarter facility
    • Medical insurance
    • Loans at subsidized interest rates

The remuneration offered for specialist SO posts is quite attractive. Fast track growth opportunities also motivate candidates to prepare diligently for this exam.

IBPS SO Preparation Strategy Tips

Here are handy tips for candidates to prepare efficiently for the IBPS SO 2024 exam:

  • Thoroughly read IBPS SO recruitment notification
  • Carefully analyze the detailed exam pattern and syllabus
  • Create a focused preparation plan as per your strengths/weaknesses
  • For Prelims, give priority to the Professional Knowledge section
  • Refer discipline specific books/study material to strengthen core concepts clarity
  • Solve previous years papers questions from all sections
  • Practice mock tests to assess preparation levels
  • Work on speed and time management during exams

As the IBPS SO exam syllabus is quite vast, systematic preparation is vital right from the start to clear this highly competitive exam.

How to Apply for IBPS SO 2024 Exam

Eligible candidates can apply online for IBPS SO posts by visiting the official website www.ibps.in.

The key steps to register IBPS SO online application are:

  • Go to IBPS website and click on CRP SPL posts Apply link
  • Fill all mandatory personal and academic details in online form
  • Upload a scanned photo and signature in specified format
  • Pay the application fee online through Netbanking or Debit/Credit card
  • Save and print the final submitted application form

The online registration window opens for 20-30 days after IBPS issues SO notification. Hence, candidates should apply well in time.

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How many attempts are permitted for IBPS SO exam?

General category candidates can attempt upto 6 times for IBPS SO posts. Relaxation in maximum attempts applicable for reserved category aspirants.

What is the passing mark criteria in IBPS SO exam?

The minimum cut-off marks for IBPS SO Prelims is 40-45% for unreserved category. Final selection depends on consolidated marks in Mains + Interview subject to category-wise cut-offs.

Which sections should I focus more on for IBPS SO preparation?

The Professional Knowledge and Quantitative Aptitude sections should be thoroughly prepared as they carry high weightage in deciding candidates’ rankings in the IBPS SO exam.

What is the Professional Knowledge syllabus for IT Officer post?

The related topics include Computer Science subjects like Database Management, Operating Systems, Computer Networks, Compilers, Object Oriented Programming etc.

Can students from commerce background apply for HR/Personnel Officer post?

Yes, candidates from any graduation streams can apply for the IBPS SO HR/Personnel Officer post. Relevant full time post-graduation degree is compulsory.

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