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HomeBlogAgileA Journey Towards Earning a Leading SAFe®5.0 Certification

A Journey Towards Earning a Leading SAFe®5.0 Certification

19th Feb, 2024
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    A Journey Towards Earning a Leading SAFe®5.0 Certification

    Our blog regularly provides insights about the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe®), like 4 main features that enable SAFe®. You can also go through an article stating the benefits of SAFe® Agilist certification. Also, we recently published a specific article about the benefits to get the SAFe® 4.5 Certification, and here we give some details about the Leading SAFe® 4.6.

    What is SAFe®? 

    When any large organization wants to go Agile, it can hardly skip the Scaled Agile Framework ® (SAFe®). Now, this framework has become the world’s leading framework for companies that target to scale Agile. Also, SAFe® is described as the “Agile Enterprise Big Picture”, as it helps to apply Agile and Lean practices and principles to the whole organization, from the Team to the Portfolio level.

    Benefits of the SAFe® certification 

    For any professional, earning Leading SAFe certification brings recognition to be able to support all kinds of organizations in their Lean and/or Agile transformation. Indeed, SAFe® is the most used framework for scaling Agile, especially in big companies like the ones listed in the US Fortune 100. Consequently, holding a SAFe® certification makes a candidate profile very attractive compared to employers’ expectations.

    Accreditation body of SAFe®

    The Scaled Agile Framework® (SAFe®) has an official certifying body: Scaled Agile, Inc. This accreditation body guarantees “ a valid, reliable, and consistent method of assessing SAFe® skills, knowledge, and mindset “ (read more About SAFe® Certification).

    Salary of the SAFe® certified

    Salary for SAFe® certified professionals can vary across regions and experience:

    EuropeIndiaUnited States
    Agile Coach€ 70,000Rs 2,220,000$135,000
    Product Owner€ 80,000Rs 1,900,000$115,000
    Scrum Master€ 55,000Rs 1,220,000$95,000
    Software Engineer€ 60,000Rs 1,630,000$75,000

    Job roles/Target audience of the SAFe® certification

    The target audience of the SAFe® certification is wide and covers all these positions:

    •          Executives and Leaders, Managers, Directors, CIOs, and VPs
    •          Development, QA, and Infrastructure Management
    •          Program and Project Managers
    •          Product and Product Line Management
    •          Portfolio Managers, PMO, and Process Leads
    •          Enterprise, System, and Solution Architects

    Statistics related to SAFe® certification

    (Note: All the data mentioned here is provided by payscale

    EuropeIndiaUnited States
    Female: 10%
    Male: 90%
    Female: 40%
    Male: 60%
    Years of experience
    Popular companiesDeutsche Bank
    4Com Technologies
    Air France KLM
    CA, Inc.
    Syntel, Inc.
    Tata Consultancy Services Limited
    Infosys Limited
    Johnson Controls
    Federal Express Corporation (FedEx)
    Cap Gemini
    Usaa Insurance
    Vencore, Inc.
    TechSmith Corporation
    Johnson Controls

    SAFe® Agilist Exam details

    1. What is the format of the exam?

    The SAFe® certification exam is in the Multiple Choice Questions format

    2. How is the exam delivered?

    The exam is Web-based (single-browser), closed book, no outside assistance, timed.

    3. How to get access to the exam? 

    Once they have completed the Leading SAFe® course, candidates can access the exam. For this, they will use the SAFe® Community Platform. 

    4. How long is the exam?

    The exam duration is 90 minutes.

    5. How many questions? 

    The SAFe® exam consists of a total of 45 questions.

    6. What is the passing score? 

    34 out of 45 (75% passing score). 

    7. What is the exam language?


    8. How much does the exam cost?

    The course registration fee covers the first exam attempt, provided that the candidate takes the exam within 30 days of course completion. Then, it will cost $50 for any additional attempt.

    9. What are the exam prerequisites? 

    There are two main prerequisites to take the exam. First is to have an experience using the Scrum framework, the second is to have more than five years in one or several of these fields: project or product management, business analysis, software development.

    10. What is the exam retake policy of the exam?

    A first retake, meaning a second attempt on the exam, can be done at any moment after a first attempt. In case of a third attempt, candidates have to wait for 10 days and in case of a fourth attempt, they have to wait for 30 days.

    Leading SAFe® 4.6 Exam preparation 

    SAFe® Agilist Certification exam questions

    Here are some of the questions that might be helpful in exam preparation- 

    • How to run agile on multiple teams?
    • How to synchronize the work of these teams?
    • How to prioritize organizational demands?
    • How to scale an agile architecture?
    • How to deal with risks in an agile way?
    • Agile and governance, is it possible?
    • Can you highlight the addition and changes in 4-level with 3-level SAFe® 4.0?
    • Can you define a System Team?
    • Can you explain the difference/relationship between a Value Stream and an ART?
    • What is the key to crossing back in forth or connecting the various levels of SAFe®?
    • What is the difference between a Capability and an Epic or Theme?
    • Why would you decentralize decision making? Doesn’t this disempower the product owner or cause confusion about who is the final decision-maker?
    • Are there any reasons that Scrumban would not work with SAFe®?
    • We have some applications that use Scrum delivery practices and some that are milestone driven (waterfall). Can SAFe® 4.0 support both epic and user story management planning, backlog prioritization for Scrum teams, as well as requirements management for our waterfall teams (until they transition to agile)?
    • Some teams may run continuous integrations while others not. How can we balance this if we have a fixed Program Increment timeline?
    • Is SAFe® making it more complex and less agile (e.g., more rigid, additional control)?

    Exam study materials

    Knowledge and skill required by the job role are primarily measured by the exam. In order to prepare well for the exam, candidates can use various online resources like these ones:

    • The course materials are one of the most important components from the course because they offer an opportunity to refer back to the content delivered during the class. All candidates can access to it within the SAFe® Community Platform.
    • The Study guide delivers comprehensive details about the job role and the exam, like a reading list. Here again, it is accessible via the Learning Plan in the SAFe® Community Platform.
    • Another element of the Learning Plan in the SAFe® Community Platform is the Practice test. It offers predictability of success on the exam because it works with similar time duration and level of difficulty and provides the same number of questions.
    • You can go through the SAFe® sample test that contains 8 questions that will help you in SAFe® 4.6 certification exam preparation.

    Ways of earning Leading SAFe® 4.6 certification

    Attend the course

    • Course completion is the first step toward SAFe® certification.
    • Scaled Agile training classes are designed with the learner in mind. Incorporating active learning techniques with a robust role-based curriculum is a great start to the SAFe® learning journey.
    • Receive access to the SAFe® Community Platform after the class, which provides access to study materials & the exam.

    Study for the exam

    • Detailed exam study guides are available to help prepare for the exam and are part of the Learning Plan provided to candidates on the SAFe® Community Platform. Each study guide provides relevant and content-specific exam information, such as the certification role description, prerequisite skills and knowledge, exam objectives, and a comprehensive reading list.
    • Practice tests can help prepare for the exam and are part of the Learning Plan on the SAFe® Community Platform. With a practice test, candidates can ‘test before the test.’ It simulates the actual certification exam in duration, difficulty, and topic area. Passing the practice test does not guarantee to pass the certification exam, but it provides a testing simulation, and the score report can be used to identify an individual’s strengths and weaknesses. Practice tests are available at no additional charge, delivered through the Learning Plan in the SAFe® Community Platform, and can be taken as many times as needed. Note that the testers will receive the same bank of questions each time, but the questions will be randomized.
    • Sample tests provide the examples of the type and format of the questions to expect on the certification exam. They are publicly available for all exams under Exam Details on each certification detail page.
    • Leverage experience. It’s more than being book smart. Scaled Agile exams test specific knowledge, skill, experience, and attitudes related to each SAFe® job role. Combining a person’s learning and studying with their real-world experiences is a key to becoming SAFe® Certified.

    Take the Exam

    • A link to the exam is included in the Learning Plan on the SAFe® Community Platform.
    • Candidates have 30 days after course completion to take the exam at no additional charge. However, once they start the exam, they’ll have a fixed time to complete it.
    • Complete exam information, including exam time limit, number of questions, and a sample test, is available for all the exams under Exam Details on each certification official page.

    Our PRINCE2 Practitioner training online provides a comprehensive curriculum, industry-leading instructors, and flexible study options, allowing you to elevate your career with ease. This course will help you achieve mastery in project management, gain practical skills, and boost your career prospects. Enroll now to take the first step towards success.

    What will you get on passing the SAFe® 4 Agilist exam?

    Becoming a Certified SAFe® 4 Agilist requires an exceptional range of skills and is a career path for many servant leaders (Scrum Masters). SAFe® 4 Agilist certification includes:

    • Getting the Certified SAFe® 4 Agilist PDF certificate
    • Getting the Certified SAFe® 4 Agilist  digital badge. Any candidate can promote their accomplishment online

    Note: Digital badge permits individuals to share authentic certifications online through email signatures, digital resumes, and social media sites such as LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook. Digital badging consists of metadata that indicates a Certified SAFe® professional’s qualifications. Scaled Agile has partnered with Acclaim to provide digital versions of SAFe® certifications.

    • Getting one-year membership to the SAFe® Community Platform. It also includes access to the SA Community of Practice
    • Getting access to Meetup groups and events that connect you with other SAFe® certified professionals

    Note: SAFe® Meetups provides opportunities to the SAFe® certified across the globe. SAFe® Meetups allows to connect with each other face-to-face, share best practices (sometimes SAFe® experts attend or speak in these sessions to enable learning), and gain knowledge on Scaled Agile Framework in a local setting.

    • Getting access to a variety of learning resources to support you during your SAFe® journey.

    Summing It Up

    For professionals who are looking for career development in the Agile field, SAFe® certification can be the most relevant option today. It gives a guarantee to the companies that they hire individuals with the skills required to scale Agile and a strong knowledge of the SAFe® environment. On top of that, it is important to know that a large majority of big enterprises have implemented SAFe® and that the hunt for SAFe® certified professionals is still very active.


    Nicolas Casel

    Blog Author

    Scrum Master / Agile Consultant with passion for fostering Agile mindset and improving User Experience.
    Other skills: web development, CMS, usability, e-learning

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