Central Superior Service (CSS) is a countrywide competitive examination conducted by Federal Public Service Commission (FPSC), Government of Pakistan. The successful candidates who qualify through the whole process of this exam are offered government job out of different types of service groups.
What is Service Group?
The PFSC has defined 12 different service groups. Each service group has its own operations and job description. The qualifiers of CSS Exam have to give their preferences to opt service groups from the list. Finally, FPSC goes to allocate one service group to the qualifier being fit for. Group name are as below:
- Pakistan Customs
- Commerce and Trade Group (CTG)
- Foreign Service of Pakistan
- Inland Revenue Service of Pakistan
- Information Services of Pakistan
- Military Lands & Cantonment
- Office Management and Secretariat Group
- Pakistan Administrative Service
- Audit and Accounts Service
- Police Service of Pakistan
- Postal Group
- Railways (Commercial & Transport) Group
Think before Opting Service Groups
A candidate has to choose Service Groups that needs careful thinking. One aspect is that if a CSS qualifier is higher in merit then he / she may get the group of his / her choice otherwise FPSC offers the group as per merit achieved by a CSS qualifier. While filling in the application form, all groups should be mentioned as per priority of the candidate. Sometimes, it happens so that a candidate qualified the CSS Examination but due to lower merit, he is not offered a group to which he has not mentioned in his application form even though his marks / merit falls in that group.
Most Favorite Service Groups
Most of the candidates prefer following groups and give priority even though other groups are also of same importance and prospects of promotion & career progression are more or less same.
- Pakistan Administrative Service (PAS)
- Foreign Service of Pakistan
- Police Service of Pakistan (PSP)
Introduction to CSS Service Groups
Here is group wise short analysis of CSS Service Groups:
Pakistan Customs is part of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR). Pakistan Customs is the guardian of Pakistan borders against movement of contra band goods and is facilitator of bona fide trade. It provides a major source of revenue to the Government of Pakistan in the form of taxes levied on the goods traded across the borders. It also helps to protect the domestic industry, discourage consumptions of luxury goods and stimulate development in the under-developed areas. A CSS qualified officer who opts or gets the group is appointed against post of BS-17 such as Assistant Collector Customs. Eligible for promotion as Deputy Collector Customs BS-18 & Collector Customs BS-19 & Member Customs BS-20.
Commerce and Trade Group (CTG)
Commerce and Trade Group (CTG) is responsible for the commercial diplomacy of Pakistan. It works under Ministry of Commerce.
The Officers from this cadre are posted in Pakistan's Trade Missions Abroad as Commercial Secretaries (BS-18), Commercial Counselors (BS-19), Trade Minister/Counsel General (BS-20/21), and Ambassador to the WTO (BS 21). CTG officers negotiate bilateral, multilateral and unilateral trade deals with the trade partners of Pakistan. Officers of this group lead foreign trade meetings, discussions & negotiations with the aim to secure trade agreements & deals.
Foreign Service of Pakistan
Foreign Service of Pakistan is the essential part of Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The selected candidates of this group undergo common training program at the Civil Services Academy, Lahore and later are given specialized training at the Foreign Service Academy, Islamabad. The officers are posted abroad at different High Commissions. This group is highly rated. A CSP officer awarded with this group enjoys different postings starting from BS-17 till BS-22; First Officer BS-17, Assistant Director BS-17, Deputy Director BS-18, Deputy High Commissioner, Additional High Commissioner, Joint Secretary, Spokesperson Foreign Affairs, Additional Secretary & Secretary Foreign Affairs.
Inland Revenue Service of Pakistan
The Inland Revenue was, until April 2005, a Department of the British era responsible for the collection of direct taxation, including income tax, national insurance contributions, inheritance tax, corporation tax, petroleum revenue tax and stamp duty. It has broad spectrum of working and career prospects. Very good promotion prospects.
Information Services of Pakistan
Information Services of Pakistan plays a vital role in national image building within and abroad. After the completion of Common Training Program, the probationers join Information Services Academy in Islamabad with a view to acquiring specialized training in media management and public relations. These officers are posted in one of the following Departments of Ministry of Information & Broadcasting:
- Press Information Department (PID). The officers posted in PID constantly work for the image building of federal ministries and their attached departments
- External Publicity Wing (EP Wing)
- Internal Publicity Wing
- Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC)
- Directorate of Films and Publications (DFP)
- Cyber Wing.
Military Lands & Cantonments Group (ML&C)
Military Lands & Cantonments Group (ML&C) is responsible for administering the Military Lands & Cantonments Department which in turn looks after the various Cantonment Boards and military estates that do not fall within the domain of the civil municipal/district administrations of the respective cities / towns. The department is headed by the Director General, Military Lands & Cantonments (BS-21).
Office Management and Secretariat Group
Office Management and Secretariat Group OMG/SG today is a more dynamic and broad-based cadre than its predecessor (Central Secretariat Service). A specialized pre-service training program equips the new entrants with the necessary administrative skills, and mandatory refresher courses/capacity building techniques are useful to have the officers retain the cutting edge of modern management. Besides, an exposure of not only the Federal Secretariat, the apex decision making body, but of various other field departments and organizations including Pakistani missions abroad imparts them with the necessary breadth of vision and experience to serve their country more better in a senior position. Federal Secretariat Departments.
Pakistan Administrative Service (PAS)
PAS (previously known as the District Management Group or DMG) is an elite and most prestigious cadre of the Civil Service of Pakistan. It is the most powerful group as they work at almost on all key posts. It is a versatile group enjoying all kinds of departments and field offices all across Pakistan during the course of their careers.
Audit and Accounts Service
Audit and Accounts Service is the one of the most important service group of Pakistan responsible for auditing and accounting of revenues of the state of Pakistan. It is a Constitutional Institute under the provisions of article 144 to 176 of Constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan. The post of Auditor General is a tenure post having five years tenure under the constitution. This group is also very good for service. Auditor General of Pakistan is responsible to maintain accounts of the public sector organizations and is responsible to conduct audit of the same. Recently the accounting functions of the Auditor General have been assigned to the Controller General of Accounts. The Controller General functions under the Auditor General of Pakistan. The Auditor General of Pakistan presents the annual accounts of the Ministries and Departments to the Federal and Provincial Public Accounts Committees respectively. The Accounting Offices of the Controller General of Accounts have been mainly divided into three major wings i.e. Civil (Federal / Provincial Governments), Railways and Military Accounts. These three wings are audited by independent offices headed by Directors General at the Federal and Provincial Level. The Audit of Military and Railway Wings is conducted at the Federal Level by the Audit Offices operating at the National Level. The Audit Reports are presented to the Federal Public Accounts Committee by the Auditor General and at the Provincial Level by respective Directors General.
Police Service of Pakistan (PSP)
Police Service of Pakistan group is one of the oldest groups of Civil Service of Pakistan. In 1948, a year after Pakistan gained independence from Britain; the Imperial Police (IP) was replaced by the Police Service of Pakistan. The PSP is not a law enforcement agency in its own right; rather it is the body to which all Senior Police Officers belong regardless of the agency for which they work. The PSP is staffed by police officers selected through the Federal Public Service Commission as Assistant Superintendent of Police. ASP enjoys promotion as SP, SSP, DIG, AIG and IG. This group officer gets postings in FIA, IB also.
Direct induction in Postal Group was not done until 1972. After Civil Service Reforms, Postal Group was formed and young officers started joining the group regularly every year since 1973. It is the least desired group by candidates. The Officers are posted in General Post Offices all over the Pakistan.
Railways (Commercial & Transport) Group
Pakistan Railways is a multi-cadre/multi branch organization and can be dubbed as a mini-govt. The Railways Commercial & Transportation (C&T) group plays the most important role as such it is the only cadre in Railways, inducted through CSS and is a part of Civil Services Academy Alumni C&T group is also called as operating and management department as it is solely responsible for the promotion of commercial business (freight & passenger) and for overall safety concerning train movement and operations.