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SBI Clerk and IBPS PO Success Story – Swastik Shukla
My name is Swastik Shukla. I was born and brought up in The City of Joy, Kolkata and did my matriculation from there itself. After that I moved to Allahabad and did +2 and graduation from University of Allahabad in Commerce stream.
I wanted to pursue CFA from the time I was in school, but to become a Charter holder, I needed to have some experience in finance industry of at least two years, so I decided to prepare for banking exams. After my graduation in 2015 October I applied for LIC AAO in 2015 December but couldn’t make it to the interview round probably because of lack of planning and preparation. Then, in 2016 I applied for SBI JA and SBI PO, while preparing for SBI JA I met with an accident and couldn’t study for almost a month, but I decided not to quit and started toiling day and night after recovering from the injuries.
It was from a social networking site that I came to know about Oliveboard and took the first test that was free to access. Thankfully I was somehow convinced to subscribe for SBI PO test pack which worked wonders for me and helped me clearing both SBI PO prelims and mains, SBI JA mains, and IBPS PO.
Now coming to my strategy:
I preferred reading the Hindu, Economic times and Livemint’s editorials which improved my reading speed and vocabulary. For vocab, I also read Word Power Made Easy by Norman Lewis and for RCs I read How to read Faster and Better by the aforementioned author which helped me exponentially.
Reasoning, Quant and DI:
I didn’t follow any book but practiced everything online from various websites which again helped me because of the variety of questions that I got from multiple sources.
I solved a lot of puzzles which immensely helped me in cracking both prelims and mains of all SBI PO, IBPS PO and SBI JA and that too all in the very first attempt. For data analysis and interpretation, I again practiced questions online I also solved DI questions from last CAT’s papers.
As mentioned above, I practiced a lot from multiple online sources where I came across various types of questions which increased the diversity.
Practice as many mocks as possible. Also, analyzing them is very important because it will let you know your weak areas and strengths so that you can work on them accordingly.
So, keep practicing more and more. Take mocks, analyze them and improve in the next ones.
Computer Aptitude and General Awareness:
The computer aptitude section is fairly new for every banking aspirant compared to other topics but you don’t need to worry about it if you have good logical reasoning skills. Go through as many MCQs on the internet, as possible and any other sources that you come across. I believe that will help to clear cutoff in this section.
For General Awareness, I read monthly GA reviews and finance news which was more than enough and for GK I covered as much static part as possible, that was relevant for all banking exam. I devoted 2 hours to every subject because it’s better to be a Jack of all Trades than being a master of one because you have to clear the sectional cutoffs.
This strategy helped me clear all my tests in the first attempt.
Review of exams I appeared for:
LIC AAO was extremely easy, it was only the lack of preparation because of which I couldn’t make it.
SBI JA Prelims – the questions were mostly easy and I scored 72.5 out of 100, but there was a twist in mains exam as there were no computer awareness questions but the overall level of the paper was easy to moderate.
So, the takeaway from this is:
- Be prepared for all the situations because any combination of questions can be asked and you must pass these hurdles. Prepare for the worst and everything will be fine.
- Difficulty levels in both SBI PO and IBPS PO exams were difficult to make through but one has to keep calm throughout. That’s all.
I could not clear the interview round for SBI PO, but I got through IBPS PO and have been shortlisted for Canara Bank now!
I wish all the best to all future aspirants. Just don’t give up on your hard work and you will achieve your goals.