As the Agile methodology is taking the world by storm, we see more and more professionals with the title of ‘Agile practitioner’. Infact, Agile practitioners are available a dime a dozen. In this scenario, what is it that can set you apart in the Agile space, and make you more noticeable than your peers? The Certified Scrum Master credential from Scrum Alliance may be the answer.
As a CSM, you will be recognized as part of an elite group of Scrum specialists who are proven to guide their project teams to agile success. The CSM credential sets you apart as a leader who is able to provide knowledge and expertise far beyond what a typical project manager could contribute, using powerful agile practices.
Agile software environments have created a spike in the demand for professionals with expertise in agile methodologies; who can effectively manage and take agile projects to success. By getting a Scrum Master Certification, one can get trained in these techniques. At the same time this certificate acts as a tangible proof for employers who are looking for employees with these skills.
Scrum Master certification concentrates on the importance of ‘self-organization’, which can result in the following:
- Helps you participate in the team activities and feel a sense of ownership;
- Makes you self-motivated, and escalate the team’s performance;
- Equips you to create a work environment which is useful for the company's growth;
- Gives you the knowledge and skills to make the team immune to internal and external distractions.
A Scrum Master Certification shows that you possess the required dedication that companies are looking for in Scrum Masters. There is a great demand for Scrum Masters because every team needs a dedicated person who can manage different Agile projects and aid the team in its role.
When you have this certification under your belt, it shows that you have mastered the best practices of helping various project teams within a scrum environment. It allows you to learn and easily identify what needs to be kept and what needs to be adjusted based on the needs of the project.
Along with a CSM certificate, you will have your own profile page on the Scrum Alliance website with a specially designed logo where you can have your achievements ratified.
Top Job Designations For Scrum Masters
1. Entry Level Scrum Master
With an experience of less than a year, you can land jobs as entry level Scrum Master. Your scope of work may be lesser, but you would still be following all the Agile practices.
2. Scrum Master
After over a year’s experience in this level, you could be promoted to a Scrum Master role, and will be required to implement the servant-leader style of operation. You would have to play the roles of a facilitator, coach and motivator capable of removing any obstacles that your team is likely to face during the process of production.
With added responsibilities and experience, you can easily expect a higher salary from your organization. You also get the benefit of continuing your Scrum Master education for 2 days each year on your Scrum Score Card.
3. Senior Scrum Master
Along with the qualities of a Scrum Master, you will be appended with the responsibility of handling many teams and maintaining harmony among all the members as well as the teams. You get to demonstrate your increased experience and in-depth knowledge on the practices and frameworks.
4. Scrum/Agile Coach
As an Agile or Scrum coach, you’ll be responsible for training teams, sites, and groups on Scrum practices. It is your responsibility to keep teams informed about new updates in the Scrum Guide, and about the latest techniques and technologies that can be implemented for faster results. Becoming a Scrum Coach requires years of experience working on Scrum and with Scrum teams.
5. Product Owner/ Manager
With all the knowledge and experience in handling teams, project deadlines and organizational pressures, you will be qualified to be a product manager or a product owner.
Why should you become a Scrum Master?
In reality, we know that certifications provide an additional value once we acquire some experience. The CSM certifications act as an add-on to your career. Listed below are the reasons to get your Scrum Master Certification and the advantages of pursuing the CSM training:
1. Certified Scrum Masters earn more
CSM certified individuals earn more on average than their non-certified peers.
Salary in different cities in the US:
|New York, New York||$70,685 – $1,37,957|
|Seattle, Washington||$71,907 – $1,31,710|
|San Francisco, California||$81,894 – $1,46,277|
|Washington, District of Columbia||$68,885 – $1,36,149|
|Atlanta, Georgia||$57,929 – $1,22,558|
Salaries given by different companies:
|Amazon.com Inc||$96,958 – $1,38,725|
|Capital One Financial Corp||$73,830 – $1,20,355|
|Booz, Allen, Hamilton||$67,117 – $119,230|
|Cognizant Technology Solution Corp||$69,531 – $1,04,559|
|General Electric Co (GE)||$83,763 – $1,26,111|
Entry Level Salary for Scrum Master
Mid-level Salary for Scrum Master
|Agile Project Manager||$92K|
|Senior Software Release Engineer||$125,275|
|IT Business Process ScrumMaster||84k|
Senior Level Salary for Scrum Master
|Director of Operations||$106,933|
|General/ Operation Manager||$75,639|
|Chief Financial Officer||$146,171|
Agile Coach Salary for Scrum Master
|Job Profile||Salary Range|
Product Owner Salary
|Product Owner||$99,371 to $117,516|
2. Have a strong knowledge of Scrum
If you are not familiar with Scrum, enrolling for a training course or pursuing a credential for Agile and Scrum will help you gain the required skills and utilize it effectively. If you are in the initial stages of using Agile methodology for your project, the CSM certification will provide you with the basic knowledge you need to achieve Scrum success.
Even if you do not know much about Scrum, the CSM certification will help you build a solid base of Scrum knowledge and understand the concepts of Scrum framework.
3. Change your mindset
To work with Agile and Scrum methodologies effectively, we need to develop an Agile mindset. The Agile mindset is a key factor for the teams to achieve a successful and self-sustaining approach. Industry-oriented certification and training will benefit this kind of mindset. As a member of the Scrum team, thinking in an Agile way leads to lesser disagreements, more successful projects and better team collaboration.
4. Knowledge of Scrum Artifacts
This certification includes concepts like the product backlog, sprint backlog, burndown charts etc. which are the pillars of a Scrum project. These Scrum concepts will be an advantage for the organizations to deliver the project in iterations.
5. Be admissible and catch your market
The certifications will provide you with an in-depth practical knowledge to improve your career. It makes you relevant and marketable in your field. CSM certifications will improve your career growth across any organization or industry that engages with Agile values. This certification proves that you have an Agile mindset and knowledge of Agile concepts.
6. Certified Scrum Masters are assets to the workforce
It is difficult for any organization to adopt a new methodology as it affects the entire structure of the organization including:
In this regard, it is quintessential for all the customers to achieve some tangible and real benefits in the early stage with self-managing teams and incremental iterations. If you are not a certified member, you might miss the opportunity to establish yourself as an effective Scrum master in your organization.
7. Strengthening teamwork
We have a few organizations that consider Scrum master certification a must for different departments. This certification generally has a positive result when it comes to working with your peers. As a certified Scrum Master, you will have the potential to build and strengthen the core understanding of Scrum while working with your peers. With multiple Scrum experts present in various organizational departments, there is successful execution of Agile and Scrum methodologies which translates to organizational benefits.
8. Establish your basic Scrum knowledge to peers
The Certified ScrumMaster (CSM) certification shows your expertise and knowledge of Scrum that makes you capable of working within the organization. You don’t need to waste your time to show your credibility in your workplace, your certification speaks volumes.
9. Qualified employees drive successful projects
Scrum teams that have members trained in Agile & Scrum are more likely to drive a project towards success. Clients would be able to recognize the potential value of a Scrum team that works together to apply Scrum in a productive way.
10. A feather in your cap
A certification is a proof of your mettle. For professionals, it’s a validation of their passion and dedication to their respective fields.
11. Succeed as a servant leader
As a Certified ScrumMaster, you have the ability to motivate and lead your teammates. You will guide them and help the team work together smoothly.
12. A badge of honour
Along with an improvement in your marketability, a Scrum Master Certification is also a badge of honour. Your employees would never doubt your eligibility as a mentor and will become more open towards your ideas. Scrum is not a static methodology in any sense- it is a living, changing and continuously evolving framework which has to be understood in depth before implementation. A Scrum Master Certification helps you to do just that, all the while improving your position in the organization.
13. Be apart from the crowd
The CSM credential demonstrates to your employees that you have the experience and skills to lead an agile team to success. It serves as a differentiator showing potential employers that you have an edge over your non-certified counterparts.
It shows that you know the goals to be achieved and has a clear vision of what it will take to succeed. You know the quality that is needed to be delivered, and ensure that the team works towards it, ensuring project success and client satisfaction.
14. Iron out glitches in your project
In case there are any impediments in the way of project progress, the CSM will negotiate, address any such challenges and build a positive work culture.
15. Ability to judge risks
Scrum teams are known to release better products at lower risks, and as a CSM you can be the first to spot any red flags that could lead to potential disaster.
16. Ability to prioritize
Prioritizing is the first step towards Scrum success; a CSM will be able to prioritize tasks efficiently.
17. Be a team player
A CSM is, above all, a good team player. You will listen to your teammates, accept their suggestions and address any challenges they may be facing.
18. Become a better communicator
By keeping channels of communication and collaboration open, you will share all relevant reports, calendars and deadlines with the team so that you can work together towards project success.
19. Adopt an Agile mindset
Scrum being an Agile methodology, training and certifications will help people in your team embrace the Agile practices. And having a consistent Agile mindset in a team will lead to lesser disagreements, better team collaboration and ultimately delivering successful projects.
20. Stay marketable
All industries adopting Agile practices will have excellent career opportunities for candidates with Scrum certification. This certification will prove that you have an Agile mindset and core knowledge of Agile practices.
21. An asset to your organization
If there are skilled and proven Agile professionals in an organization, the management might benefit from it by adopting Agile methodology as it will effectively influence all the aspects of the business processes.
22. Learn a range of Skills
The Scrum Master Certification helps you to focus on your actual experience and skill set because you have shown that you completely comprehend the principles that are needed for managing a scrum team.
Many companies are constantly looking for ways to become more Agile and there are not enough people out there with the required experience to compete with the high demand for scrum masters. If you have a Scrum Master certification, you not only stand a greater chance of getting a job, but you also have an opportunity to earn higher salaries and excel in your career.
23. Expand your professional network
A huge benefit of getting a Scrum Master Certification is the network you build — you get to be a part of a select community of recognized Scrum experts. These experts have been working to improve all the areas of Scrum implementation, including its methodology, and you can seek their advice if you are ever in a tight spot.
Once you are a Certified ScrumMaster (CSM) you can mingle with authorized Scrum experts committed to ensuring continuous improvements with an Agile approach. Scrum Alliance is the official body that issues the CSM and has Scrum Masters across the global. This community actively engages in Scrum events, discussions, forums and other activities that keeps you up to date and knowledgeable.
Being a certified Scrum Master, helps you join a community of recognized Scrum experts, practitioners and trainers. This global network will give you exposure to deepen your Scrum knowledge, acquire guidance whenever necessary and also enable you to provide solutions to other problems.
An example is Scrum.org, which actually features a global network of Scrum trainers as well as practitioners. There are few things in the Agile world that this community cannot help you with, and a Certification helps you gain the privilege of their guidance.
24. Influence your organization to adopt Agile
If your organization has well-trained Agile professionals, the management would be more comfortable to invest in adopting the Scrum methodology. The CSM certification shows the management that you have the knowledge to work with Scrum and implement it with success.
A professional study of Scrum means that you have to study its methods from all angles: this can help you gain a fresh perspective, along with a strong working knowledge of the implementation of Agile methods. You will be able to pass on the Agile mindset you gain among your teammates; this increases the cohesion and cooperation of the team by leaps and bounds. The team’s unity, as we all know, is in direct proportion to the success of any project.
Getting a Scrum Master certification is definitely a great addition to your resume. A Scrum professional knows how an organization works, and since the framework is used in almost all industries, your career options expand considerably. If you’re already employed, you have a great shot at bringing in benefits to your organization- with the requisite knowledge you receive, you can turn yourself into a company asset.
If you have any certified Agile workers among your colleagues, a certification helps you improve your working relationship with them. Even if your peers have studied or adopted a different Agile methodology, the underlying ideas do not change. You will be able to converse and exchange ideas with them, and in the process strengthen the Agile culture within your company. The work environment is improved, since you can understand how your colleagues work, or even think, to some extent.
Passing a Scrum Master examination is no mean feat — it requires you to study and have expertise in various aspects involved in implementing a Scrum methodology.
All the points discussed above are very compelling reasons to explore this certification further. Advance your career with the Scrum Master certification from Scrum Alliance, and sign up for a CSM training workshop led by the best minds in the business.