Indian Engineering Services Exam- Complete Guide


A life lived without serving your country is a life lived in vain. Maybe this drives thousands of students every year to appear for government exams. Who said clearing competitive exams is easy? However, if you have the passion and will to serve your government, nothing can stop you. Indian engineering services are an arduous exam that requires laborious training and practice. After the laborious preparation, the benefits one enjoys the efforts are wholly worth it.

Today, I’ll be putting forward the guide to Indian engineering services in this article. To know everything in detail about the services, the exam pattern, and the salary, read this article till the end. Expand your knowledge and know everything in detail.

You can also read our blog on Indian Economic Services.

What are Indian engineering services?

Every nation needs technical experts to carry on various functions. Indian engineering services examination is conducted to recruit officers. These officers are hired after rigorous procedures and help in the technical functions of the Government of India. This exam is held by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC).

The Engineering Services Examination is held once every year. The engineers hired after the extra tough criteria administer various large public sector segments. The Indian engineering services is mainly held to recruit officers who will work under the following categories,

  • Indian Railways
  • Power
  • Telecommunications
  • Central Water Engineering
  • Defence Service of Engineers
  • Central Engineering Service

Depending on what you have the most specialisation in, you get the job on clearance of your examination. The career graph of professionals working in Indian engineering services undoubtedly keeps on getting better. The cherry on the cake builds your reputation and develops your self-esteem.

Becoming an Indian service engineer, you can also go up to managing director/chairman. There are endless possibilities for your promotion as you join as an Assistant Executive Engineer.

When you now know about Indian engineering services, let us study the IES exam pattern.

indian engineering services
January 28, 2022
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Table of Contents

What is the IES exam pattern?

The Union Public Service Commission’s engineering services examination is a national level exam. The age limit required for this exam has to be between 21-30 years. The Indian engineering services examination is divided into a total of four categories. These categories are as follows:

  • Civil Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Electronics & Telecommunication Engineering

Based on these four categories, the IES exam pattern is divided. There are three stages, and after clearing all three, one gets recruited. The Indian engineering services examination is conducted as per the following plan –

  1. Stage-1: Preliminary examination (objective type papers),
  2. Stage-2: Main examination (conventional type papers),
  3. Stage-3: Personality test

The preliminary and the main examination are divided into different subjects depending upon the category you belong to. The preliminary examination will consist of two different objective type question papers. The examination will be a total of 500 marks. The first paper was 200 marks and the second paper was 300 marks.

After the candidates qualify for this preliminary examination, they will become eligible for the next round. The rest of the people who fail the prelims can come next year with more preparation. It should be noted that there will be negative marking as well. For each wrong answer you give, you will have to penalty. The penalties that one has to pay are mentioned as follows-

  1. There will be four options available for the question. If the candidate gives the wrong answer, 1/3rd of the marks that have been assigned to the question will be deducted.
  2. If a candidate gives more than one answer to any question, it will be treated wrong. Again, the penalty will be paid by the candidate. 1/3rd of the marks will be deducted from the total marks assigned to the question. The penalty of this case will be similar to the above case.
  3. There will be no penalty in case you leave any questions unanswered. Hence, this is a positive element. If you are unsure of any questions, you can leave that.

The Indian engineering services examination then asks its prelims qualified candidates to appear for the next round. The next round is the main paper. This main paper consists of two conventional type papers. Both of the papers will have a weightage of around 300 marks each. The main paper will hence have a total mark of 600. The two conventional papers will be of engineering discipline-specific subjects only. The total time allotted for the exams will be three hours.

Candidates who qualify for both the stage 1 and stage 2 papers will become eligible for the next round. The next round will consist of a personality test of 200 marks. This personality test is an interview. It should be highly emphasized that most candidates ignore the importance of this personality test. However, this ignorance is the worst loophole. Many of the candidates cannot clear this test resulting in their re-examination next year.

In this personality test, the whole emphasis will be laid on the candidate’s qualities. Its leadership, intellectual and initiative abilities will be tested and observed. The mental and physical qualities of the candidate will also be closely monitored. It will be observed if the candidate is of sound knowledge, health, and mental well-being.

The marks obtained by the students in all three papers will help determine the selection. He has been selected if the candidate qualifies for all three papers with minimum qualification marks. The final ranking would be determined based on these three papers only. The Indian engineering services will only hire its new set of officials based on this IES exam pattern.

You can also read our blog on How to prepare for IAS.

How do I join Indian engineering services?

Indian engineering services can be joined by any person providing you fulfil the necessary criteria. Any person who does not fulfil these criteria cannot appear for the Indian engineering services examination. A candidate must have a nationality, age limit, and necessary educational qualifications. The criteria for all the three things have been highlighted below-

  • Nationality :

A candidate must be

a) citizen of India

b) Candidates from Bhutan or Nepal can also appear for Indian engineering services

c) Tibetan refugees who came to India before 1962 to settle in India permanently can also appear for this exam.

d) a person who has origin in India and migrated to Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Zaire and Ethiopia, or from Vietnam with the only intention of permanently settling in India.

In all the b), c), and d) cases, candidates can appear only if the Government of India has issued a certificate of eligibility in their favour.

  • Age limit :

A candidate must be of at least 21 years of age. The maximum age for appearing in the Indian engineering services examination is 30 years. The age limit, which is 30, can be relaxed in the case of candidates belonging to the following categories –

  • Candidates belonging to OBC – 3 years relaxation
  • Defence Services personnel who got disabled during their operations with ay foreign country – 4 years relaxation
  • Candidates belonging to SC/ST caste – 5 years
  • A candidate who ordinally has been domiciled in the state of Jammu & Kashmir from 1 January 1980 to 31 December 1989 – 5 years
  • Veterans, which include commissioned officers and ECOs/SSCOs who have rendered five years of their services in the military – 5 years

Educational Qualification

You can appear for the Indian engineering services examination only if you have a bachelor’s degree in engineering or have done M.Sc. the degrees will be acceptable only if you have it from a recognized college or university.

How should one prepare himself for Indian engineering services?

If you have made up your mind that you want to become an IES, you should start preparing. Cracking IES is not an easy task. It will require real hard work and also some sacrifices. You would have to devote most of your time to its preparation. For any assistance, you can reach out to any online tutoring aid.

Chegg India Pvt. Ltd. is also one such big educational platform. It strives on providing 24*7 assistance to students all over. It works on connecting students with teachers and helps solve the students’ queries as soon as possible. You can work as an engineering subject expert/ online tutor at Chegg and answer questions online; this will test your knowledge and help you learn more by answering others. You can start this with your studies and can continue this even after you join Indian engineering services.

You can Apply Here – Become A Subject Matter Expert.

How much is the salary of an IES?

The salary of an IES like any other gazetted grade A level government post keeps on increasing. As you keep on gaining work experience and as you keep on providing your service, your salary keeps on getting better. The starting salary of an IES under 7th pay commission is valued at INR 30000 – 40000 rupees. This salary keeps on increasing with your service years.


If you are willing to take the chance, don’t think too much. This is the time when you need to invest right. Indian engineering services are one of the most reputed jobs one could get. If you wish to build a strong personality and self-esteem over the years, this job is worth every sacrifice you would make. The road might be full of hurdles, but you will enjoy every bit of your ride once you reach your final destination.

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