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Guide to a Successful Career Path with the Scrum Alliance Certifications

Scrum Alliance, a non-profit membership organization, established in 2001, has historically focused on providing Agile and Scrum education and certifications. Further, Scrum Alliance always aims at encouraging the Scrum adoption worldwide by transforming the work culture through guiding and inspiring “individuals, leaders, and organizations with practices, principles, and values that create workplaces that are joyful, prosperous, and sustainable.” Keeping this aim alive, Scrum Alliance accomplishes its mission by meeting the following three key principles:Inspire: Scrum Alliance inspires support leaders, organizations, and other people during their Agile transformation journey through sharing success stories, new methods, and leveraging training.Enable: This organization lets you succeed by developing various learning and support systems such as webinars, communities and user groups, and events with the help of a global network of practitioners, coaches, and trainers.Guide: That’s not it! Scrum Alliance offers guidance for the career needs of the Agile Practitioners by providing them with certifications at various levels. These certifications promote Agile values, principles, and practices, and support in switching to Agile.Bragging over 750,000 certified practitioners widespread, Scrum Alliance, Inc. currently serves as the World’s largest Agile membership organization reporting considerable growth with 5,000 and above new entrants joining a troupe of certified Agile practitioners monthly.Certifications offered by Scrum Alliance   Scrum Alliance offers 8 Scrum team Role-based certifications which include Scrum Master, Product Owner, and Developer certifications track (including foundation and advanced level), 3 Guide level certifications and 2 Agile Leadership certifications. Let us look at the different certifications offered at each level by Scrum Alliance what job roles an individual can play and after which certification, and also will help you to let you know the sequence of the certifications: Fig: Career paths based on roles Before discussing the certifications, let us look at the three categories in which Scrum Alliance certifications are divided: 1. Roles-based certificationsScrum Master track:Certified ScrumMaster®Advanced Certified ScrumMasterCertified Scrum Professional® -ScrumMasterProduct Owner track:Certified Scrum Product Owner®Advanced Certified Scrum Product OwnerCertified Scrum Professional® -Product OwnerDeveloper track: Certified Scrum Developer® Certified Scrum Professional®2. Guide level certificationsCertified Team CoachSM  Certified Enterprise CoachCertified Scrum Trainer®3. Agile Leadership certificationsCertified Agile Leadership I certificationCertified Agile Leadership II certificationNow, let us discuss each of them in details: 1. Roles-based certificationsThere are 3 different roles-based certifications, focussing on the different roles present in an Agile organization. These certifications include:Scrum Master trackScrum Master, as most of the individuals know is a facilitator for the Agile development team. The Scrum Master ensures that the Scrum team follows an appropriate Scrum process during product development. The Scrum process includes the Choosing the right Scrum framework, implementing it in the project and making sure it is followed in principle and essence correctly by the team, Product Owner, and the Scrum team.Salary of the Certified ScrumMaster® Based on the Ziprecruiter.com, a Certified Scrum Master® earns an average pay of $116,184 per annum. The salary range of the Scrum Master depends on the skills they have earned, work experience as a Scrum Master, etc. The advanced level Scrum Master certifications are also a major factor in deciding a salary of the Scrum Master.a) Certified ScrumMaster® (CSM®)A Scrum Master owns the Scrum project team and helps them to perform the best at the end of every Sprint. Being a Scrum Master, he/she protects the team from the distractions and aids them in executing the Scrum accurately. With this Certified ScrumMaster® certification (CSM®), you will get more career opportunities across all the industries and show your achievement on the basics of Scrum.Prerequisites required for becoming Certified ScrumMaster®:There is no predefined set of eligibility requirements to attend a Certified ScrumMaster® training as per ScrumAlliance Inc.. It can be taken by any interested professional in order to amplify their Scrum understanding. In order to gain certification, an individual must pass the CSM certification exam with 74% passing score.Steps to achieve CSM certification:Any interested individual can take the CSM course. To acquire this certification, you need to follow these steps:An individual can undergo 16-hours of CSM training from KnowledgeHut, a Certified Scrum Trainer® (CST®) providerPass the CSM exam by answering 37 out of 50 questions correctly in 1-hour.Accept the license agreement and finish your Scrum Alliance membership profile.Target audience of the courseSince Scrum is not just applied to IT and software sector, it is implemented in other industries like government, education, manufacturing, banking, and finance. Therefore, this training can be taken up by the existing Scrum Masters, interested individuals to work in an Agile environment, and other individuals responsible for delivering the products. The target audience include- Software Engineer/Developer/AnalystProduct ManagerProject ManagerTeam Leader/Module LeaderBusiness AnalystDevelopment team memberTestersQuality Assurance ProfessionalsArchitectsUser Experience ProfessionalsAnyone wanting to improve Agile processes in their projectsCareer path of a Certified ScrumMaster (CSM)Once this course is done, you can level-up your skills by taking the advanced level certifications viz,  Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM®), and Certified Scrum Professional ScrumMaster® (CSP-SM®).b) Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM®)Being a Certified ScrumMaster® (CSM®), an individual is considered proficient in implementing the Scrum values, practices, and applications. Now, it's time to move ahead with your Agile journey by achieving Advanced Certified ScrumMaster (A-CSM®) certification. A-CSM® is the next level of your journey towards Scrum and Agile after completing your CSM®.With A-CSM certification, you will be able to increase engagement by facilitating communication between the Scrum team members and the Stakeholders. You can further enhance your Scrum implementation skills and knowledge and will be able to show your advanced value as a highly skilled Agile professional to the potential employer.Prerequisites to achieve A-CSM certificationYou just need to hold an active CSM certification from Scrum Alliance and you have at least 12 months of experience working as a Scrum Master.Steps to become Advanced Certified ScrumMaster (A-CSM®)Attend Advanced Certified ScrumMaster (A-CSM®) training from any registered education provider of Scrum AllianceComplete all the learning objectives by the approved educatorAccept the A-CSM License Agreement and complete your Scrum Alliance membership profileTarget audience of the courseThe target audience of A-CSM course is the professionals who have work experience in Scrum, play the role of the Scrum Master in the Agile organizations and are CSM® certified.Career path of Advanced Certified ScrumMaster (A-CSM)Once you have upgraded your skills with the Advanced Certified Scrum Master (A-CSM) certification, you are ready to master in Certified Scrum Professional ScrumMaster® (CSP-SM®).Product Owner trackScrum Product Owner is the voice of the Stakeholders and the Customers. The Scrum Product Owner solely owns the product backlog and acts as the cornerstone of the Scrum project. A Product Owner is responsible for increasing the product value and delivers a valuable product at a high speed by strictly following the implementation process.Salary of the CSPO certified professionalsAs per the Payscale.com, the average salary of a CSPO certified professional is $101k per annum. The salary of a Product Owner keeps varying based on the skills an individual has, year/years of experience he/she has, and the most affecting factor is the advanced level certifications for the Product owner to enhance your probability of landing the best jobs in the market. c) Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO®)A professional, very much interested in handling the business side of the project [such as Earned Value, Return On Investment, Velocity, Backlog calculations etc.], is probably the right person to attain a Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO®) certification. Being a CSPO, you are responsible for creating a product vision, prioritizing the product backlog, and giving the customers exactly what they are looking for [or intuitively want]Prerequisites to achieve Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO®) certificationThere is no prerequisite to attend CSPO training. However, in order to earn this certification, an individual need to attend 2-days of CSPO course taught by Certified Scrum Trainer (CST).Steps to achieve Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO®) certificationThe following steps need to be followed to earn a Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO®) certification:Attend two days (16 hours) of CSPO course mentored by Certified Scrum Trainer (CST)Scrum Alliance will release the certification designating you as a Certified Scrum Product Owner®The certification will be valid for 2-years from the date of issuanceTarget audience of the CSPO courseThis 16 hours of CSPO course is curated for an individual who is responsible for directing a product and setting up finance during a Scrum project implementation. Scrum Masters can also take this training without thinking that the CSM course is a prerequisite to attend the CSPO course. The CSPO certification can be viewed as an alternative to the CSM course. The target audience for this course is:Project ManagersDevelopersProduct OwnersManagers-Software developmentArchitects-Software developmentProduct ManagersSoftware developersSoftware testersTeam leads/Team members interested in learning more about ScrumScrum MastersExecutivesBusiness StakeholdersCareer Path of the CSPO certified professionalsAfter mastering the CSPO course, you can level-up your knowledge with Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner (A-CSPOSM) and then Certified Scrum Professional®-Product Owner (CSP®-PO).d) Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner (A-CSPO℠) If you are a Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO), you are responsible for maximising the product’s business value and understanding the Stakeholder’s requirements to deliver the best at regular intervals [known as Sprints or Iterations]. Now, the next step is to achieve the advanced level certification- Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner (A-CSPO℠) certification.Prerequisites to achieve Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner℠(A-CSPO℠) certification A candidate must hold an active CSPO certification to attend Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner® (A-CSPO®) course from Scrum Alliance and at least 1-year of work experience as a Scrum Product Owner.Steps to become Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner℠ (A-CSPO℠) certification If you have an active CSPO certification, attend an A-CSPO certification training to learn more techniques in managing the Stakeholders and Product BacklogComplete successfully all the educator-designed components of an approved institute.Scrum Alliance will ask you to accept the A-CSPO license agreement and complete your Scrum Alliance membership profile.You will get A-CSPO certification from Scrum Alliance. Maintain your certification by renewing your certification every two years.Target audience of the A-CSPO courseThis course is targeted towards practicing Product Owners who are looking to upgrade their career with the basic mechanics of the PO role and are CSPO certified.Career Path of the A-CSPO certified professionalsCertified Scrum Professional Product Owner® (CSP-PO®) certification is the next certification in the list after A-CSPO certification.Developer TrackToday, Scrum Developers have more demand in the market because of their specialized Agile and Scrum skills and proficiency in continuous improvement. Earning Certified Scrum Developer (CSD) certification is expanding the need of the Scrum Developers in Agile enterprises. Today, Scrum Developers are earning an average of $82k per year, playing the roles like .Net Developer, Software Engineer, IT Project Manager, and many more.e) Certified Scrum Developer® (CSD)Certified Scrum Developers® exhibit their knowledge through formal training and technical skills assessments. Being certified, they demonstrate their practical as well as theoretical understanding of Agile and Scrum principles along with Agile Engineering skills. Prerequisites to achieve Certified Scrum Developer (CSD) certificationAn individual with programming knowledge can attend CSD course. To earn this certification, an individual needs to undergo at least 5-days of formal CSD training course instructed by a Scrum Alliance Registered Education Provider (REP) and a Scrum Alliance Authorized Instructor. On the other hand, the certification offers the privilege to the candidates who are CSM certified. They can skip the first 2 days and directly join from the 3rd day of the technical training.Steps to earn CSD certificationThe following steps are followed to earn CSD certification:Enroll for 5 days of CSD course taught by the Scrum Alliance approved CSD instructor. It consists of two tracks to get CSD certification and the tracks are:Track 1-Attend CSM course (for 2 days)CSD technical course (for 3 days)Track 2- A basic introductory course (for 1 day)CSD technical course (for 3 days)CSD technical elective course (for 1 day)After successfully completing the course (following track 1/track 2), Scrum Alliance will send you a CSD license agreement.Congrats! You are now CSD certified. The certification will be added to your profile, which will be valid for another 2 years.Maintain your certification by earning Scrum Education Units® (SEUs) and by renewing your certification in every two years.Target audience of the CSD courseThe Certified Scrum Developer® certification is beneficial for the software developers (programmers) building software in the Scrum organizations. This course will benefit ArchitectsDBAsDesigners Developers, Development ManagersDirectors Product ManagersQA Engineers, Software EngineersTechnical Analysts, Technical LeadsTechnical Writers TestersAnyone who wants to be a good developer well aware of top Agile practices such as TDD, Extreme Programming etc.Career path of CSD certified professionalLevel-up your skills with Certified Scrum Professional® (CSP) certification, once you have mastered this course. f) Certified Scrum Professionals (CSP) certificationsCertified Scrum Professionals let their teams constantly improve the implementation of Agile and Scrum practices and principles applied to the Scrum project. This certification marks CSP’s experience, skills enhanced through training and a proven Scrum knowledge in development after being certified as CSD®. Prerequisites to achieve Certified Scrum Professional® (CSP) certificationsAn individual should hold an active Certified Scrum Developer (CSD) certification issued by the Scrum Alliance in order to achieve Certified Scrum Professional® certifications. In addition, an individual should:An individual should have at least 36 months of working experience as a Scrum Master/ Product Owner/ Developer/ Other in Agile or Scrum based project in the recent past 5 years.At least 70 SEUs [Scrum education units] in past 3 yearsSteps to earn Certified Scrum Professional® certificationsIf you have an active CSD certification, you are eligible to enroll your name for the Certified Scrum Professional® certification course as per the respective certifications Attend the CSP training to enhance your Agile facilitation and coaching skillsComplete all the educator-designed components. These components may incorporate pre- or post- course work as regraded essential by your Certified Scrum Trainer (CST) to finish the learning objectivesComplete your Scrum Alliance membership profile by agreeing to the CSP-SM/PO/D license agreement and fulfilling a minimum of 36 months of work experience as a Scrum Master/ Product Owner/ Developer respectivelyMaintain your CSP certification by renewing a certification every 2-years.Target audience of the Certified Scrum Professional® (CSP) courseThe course is designed for the Product Owners, Scrum Masters, and Developers with working knowledge ready to take the next step in their career learning. Agile leaders, including coaches, consultants, project managers, facilitators, and technical leaders, all can  be benefited from enhancing their skills with the CSP certification.Career Path of the Certified Scrum Professional® (CSP®) certified professionalsAn individual with CSP® certification is expected to demonstrate the practical as well as the theoretical knowledge and a body of knowledge of the Scrum roles, events, and artifacts of the complete Scrum framework. Certified Scrum Professional (CSP®) certification provides a gateway for those who are looking for their future as a Certified Scrum Trainer (CST), Team Coach, Agile Coach globally.2. Guide Level certificationsGuide level certifications are aimed at professionals who have advanced knowledge and well-qualified coaches, trainers, mentors, and thought leaders who spread their knowledge on Agile practices and Scrum framework among the professionals. Scrum Alliance provides one certification focused on trainers and two certifications in the coaching category. Individuals with Guide level certifications are considered as professional certifications holder from Scrum Alliance. Let’s see Guide or Elevated level certifications as follows:a) Certified Team CoachSM (CTC)The Certified Team Coach (CTC) usually works at the team level with the management, Scrum teams, and Stakeholders. Enterprise hires Certified Team Coaches to provide coaching, facilitation, training, mentoring, impediment removing, and leadership to encourage collaboration, continuous development, and value delivery across multiple teams and departments.  Prerequisites to become CTCAn active Certified Scrum Professional certification 1,000 hours of Agile coaching experience in the last 2 years without considering your role as Scrum MasterCoaching experience in at least 2 organizations Must be actively participated in at least 5 Agile eventsPractical experience of Scrum implementation and coaching experience in Agile and Scrum framework.Who can attend CTC training?The Certified Team Coach (CTC) is specifically targeted to the Scrum Evangelist interested in coaching at multiple levels. Also, Certified Scrum Professional (CSP-SM/PO) is the recommended certification that will make you eligible to gain CTC credential.  Steps to achieve CTC certificationTo earn Certified Team Coach (CTC) certification, an individual need to submit an application with the application feeScrum Alliance will cross-check the application to meet all the prerequisites required to earn this credentialOnce it is approved, individuals are required to pay an annual fee to maintain this certificationb) Certified Enterprise Coach (CEC)The Certified Enterprise Coach (CEC) by Scrum Alliance is skilled at Scrum (both in theoretical and practical knowledge). The Certified Enterprise Coaches (CECs) have years of experience in enterprise Scrum transformations and a detailed understanding of implementing Scrum practices and principles. The CECs guide organizations towards the challenges organizations are facing during Scrum adoption. Prerequisites to become Certified Enterprise Coach (CEC)A candidate aspiring Certified Enterprise Coach (CEC) credential must possess:Knowledge of Scrum practices, proven leadership, and coaching skills An active CSP-SM™ or CSP-PO™ or CSP® certification Working experience in Scrum team rolesCoaching experience in at least three organizations2,000 hours over the past 3 years of work experience as a Coach. Who can attend CEC training?This training is aimed at Agile professionals who are looking to guide the organizations in their Agile transformation. Steps to achieve CEC certificationSubmit an application form along with a feeScrum Alliance does a peer assessment, candidates are asked to pay the annual fee.c) Certified Scrum Trainer® (CST)The CST® certification is the most sought-after and only trainer-centric certification offered by Scrum Alliance. As a CST, you are the individuals who wishes to transform the way of working of the people and team they work with. Successful completion of the CST course will let you teach CSM or CSPO courses.   Prerequisites to become Certified Scrum Trainer® (CST)To become a CST, you should have:In-depth knowledge of the Scrum concepts, practices, and principlesAn active Certified Scrum Professional ScrumMaster™ (CSP-SM™) or Certified Scrum Professional Product Owner™ (CSP-PO™) or CSP® designation from Scrum AllianceHands-on experience in Scrum implementation as a ScrumMaster, Product Owner, or Development team memberTeaching experience in partnership with any Certified Scrum Trainer (CST) or independently-Taught to at least 100 candidatesHosted at least 10 or more days ScrumMaster training sessions Respective certifications in order to train on the courses (e.g. if want to train on CSPO, an individual should hold an active CSPO certification.  Target audience of Certified Scrum Trainer® (CST) courseThis certification is for the candidates who are well-versed in executing the Agile practices and desire to train other professionals.Steps to achieve Certified Scrum Trainer® (CST) courseIndividuals seeking CST certification need to submit an application with by paying an application feeTrainer Approval Community (TAC) will review this application Once approved by them, Interview and Certification panel will invite those individuals to attend an in-person interviewYour performance in the interview will decide your full CST status or denial of the CST certificationIf approved as a CST, you are requested to sign the CST agreement and pay the annual feeIf canceled, your interview TAC will reschedule the interview3. Agile Leadership certificationsAs the world of work is changing continuously and becomes complex, enterprises and leaders are asked to continuously deliver more innovative products and services, keeping the culture of an organization zestful and gratifying. Agile Leaders produces extraordinary teams, communicate with a clear purpose, and achieve extraordinary business outcomes to the customers and their organizations. There are two Agile Leadership credentials are available:Certified Agile Leader I (CAL I)Certified Agile Leader II (CAL II)These two CAL certifications (CAL I + CAL II) by Scrum Alliance represents unique two-part education and practice-based programs to build Agile leadership competencies. The CAL certifications provides a platform to enhance your leadership skills and will make you a better leader, irrespective of your current role in the organization. We will see them in detail later on.Whom Agile Leadership  training is for?The participants for this program varies according to their professional background and work experience. The key factor here is their wish to transform workplaces into better way by executing Agile values, practices, and metrics. The CAL certifications are designed for anyone participating and interested in leading an Agile transformation. Agile Leadership training are designed for:Coach/ConsultantManagers ExecutivesCrave to play a Leadership roleLet’s take a look at two kinds of CAL certifications:a) Certified Agile Leadership I certificationCertified Agile Leadership I (CAL I) is an introductory professional course that comprises of in-depth leadership development learning objectives across five categories.  Prerequisites to attend CAL I certificationThere are no eligibility criteria to attend CAL I training. This credential can be achieved after successfully completing the set of learning objectives. The certification has no expiry date. The digital badge earned after the certification remarks your start on your agile journey.Career Path after CAL I certificationAfter CAL I certification, you can take CAL II certification to complete your Certified Agile Leadership (CAL) certifications. Career Path after CAL II certificationWith CAL II certification, you will be able to guide leaders in applying, growing, and sharing your Agile leadership journey with the Scrum teams.Prerequisites to attend CAL II certificationTo earn this credential, individuals must have CAL I certification and successful accomplishment of:Advanced Education- additional education on a unique leadership development topic, customized according to your learning journey and taught by an approved CAL educatorValidated Practice- implementing the newly earned skills at work.Renewal Policy of Scrum Alliance certificationsScrum Alliance always aims to keep the certifications and training program updated. According to Scrum Alliance, certification holders need to maintain their certifications by renewing every two years. The fee to renew the level-based certifications are:Foundation level certifications are renewed by paying $100 renewal feeAdvanced level or Professional level certifications are renewed by earning 40 Scrum Education Units (SEUs) and paying $250 as a renewal feeCoach and Trainer based certifications must be renewed annually and are required to meet all the current requirements for each such renewal.Job roles available for Scrum Alliance certified professionalsSome of the common job roles played by the Scrum Alliance certified are transformational leads, transformation coaches, Scrum Masters, developers, managers, engineers, testers, technical writers and architects. Scrum Alliance also maintains its own job panel to assist community members in their job search. If you want to know more about the recent job postings, career news, blogs, and more, you can visit Agile careers section of the Scrum Alliance.    
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Guide to a Successful Career Path with the Scrum Alliance Certifications

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Guide to a Successful Career Path with the Scrum Alliance Certifications

Scrum Alliance, a non-profit membership organization, established in 2001, has historically focused on providing Agile and Scrum education and certifications. Further, Scrum Alliance always aims at encouraging the Scrum adoption worldwide by transforming the work culture through guiding and inspiring “individuals, leaders, and organizations with practices, principles, and values that create workplaces that are joyful, prosperous, and sustainable.” 

Keeping this aim alive, Scrum Alliance accomplishes its mission by meeting the following three key principles:

  • Inspire: Scrum Alliance inspires support leaders, organizations, and other people during their Agile transformation journey through sharing success stories, new methods, and leveraging training.
  • Enable: This organization lets you succeed by developing various learning and support systems such as webinars, communities and user groups, and events with the help of a global network of practitioners, coaches, and trainers.
  • Guide: That’s not it! Scrum Alliance offers guidance for the career needs of the Agile Practitioners by providing them with certifications at various levels. These certifications promote Agile values, principles, and practices, and support in switching to Agile.

Bragging over 750,000 certified practitioners widespread, Scrum Alliance, Inc. currently serves as the World’s largest Agile membership organization reporting considerable growth with 5,000 and above new entrants joining a troupe of certified Agile practitioners monthly.

Certifications offered by Scrum Alliance   

Scrum Alliance offers 8 Scrum team Role-based certifications which include Scrum Master, Product Owner, and Developer certifications track (including foundation and advanced level), 3 Guide level certifications and 2 Agile Leadership certifications. Let us look at the different certifications offered at each level by Scrum Alliance what job roles an individual can play and after which certification, and also will help you to let you know the sequence of the certifications: 

Scrum alliance career roles

Fig: Career paths based on roles 

Before discussing the certifications, let us look at the three categories in which Scrum Alliance certifications are divided: 

1. Roles-based certifications

2. Guide level certifications

3. Agile Leadership certifications

Now, let us discuss each of them in details: 

1. Roles-based certifications

There are 3 different roles-based certifications, focussing on the different roles present in an Agile organization. These certifications include:

  • Scrum Master track

Scrum Master, as most of the individuals know is a facilitator for the Agile development team. The Scrum Master ensures that the Scrum team follows an appropriate Scrum process during product development. The Scrum process includes the Choosing the right Scrum framework, implementing it in the project and making sure it is followed in principle and essence correctly by the team, Product Owner, and the Scrum team.

Salary of the Certified ScrumMaster® 

Based on the Ziprecruiter.com, a Certified Scrum Master® earns an average pay of $116,184 per annum. The salary range of the Scrum Master depends on the skills they have earned, work experience as a Scrum Master, etc. The advanced level Scrum Master certifications are also a major factor in deciding a salary of the Scrum Master.

a) Certified ScrumMaster® (CSM®)

A Scrum Master owns the Scrum project team and helps them to perform the best at the end of every Sprint. Being a Scrum Master, he/she protects the team from the distractions and aids them in executing the Scrum accurately. With this Certified ScrumMaster® certification (CSM®), you will get more career opportunities across all the industries and show your achievement on the basics of Scrum.

Prerequisites required for becoming Certified ScrumMaster®:

There is no predefined set of eligibility requirements to attend a Certified ScrumMaster® training as per ScrumAlliance Inc.. It can be taken by any interested professional in order to amplify their Scrum understanding. In order to gain certification, an individual must pass the CSM certification exam with 74% passing score.

Steps to achieve CSM certification:

Any interested individual can take the CSM course. To acquire this certification, you need to follow these steps:

  • An individual can undergo 16-hours of CSM training from KnowledgeHut, a Certified Scrum Trainer® (CST®) provider
  • Pass the CSM exam by answering 37 out of 50 questions correctly in 1-hour.
  • Accept the license agreement and finish your Scrum Alliance membership profile.

Target audience of the course

Since Scrum is not just applied to IT and software sector, it is implemented in other industries like government, education, manufacturing, banking, and finance. Therefore, this training can be taken up by the existing Scrum Masters, interested individuals to work in an Agile environment, and other individuals responsible for delivering the products. The target audience include- 

  • Software Engineer/Developer/Analyst
  • Product Manager
  • Project Manager
  • Team Leader/Module Leader
  • Business Analyst
  • Development team member
  • Testers
  • Quality Assurance Professionals
  • Architects
  • User Experience Professionals
  • Anyone wanting to improve Agile processes in their projects

Career path of a Certified ScrumMaster (CSM)

Once this course is done, you can level-up your skills by taking the advanced level certifications viz,  Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM®), and Certified Scrum Professional ScrumMaster® (CSP-SM®).

b) Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM®)

Being a Certified ScrumMaster® (CSM®), an individual is considered proficient in implementing the Scrum values, practices, and applications. Now, it's time to move ahead with your Agile journey by achieving Advanced Certified ScrumMaster (A-CSM®) certification. A-CSM® is the next level of your journey towards Scrum and Agile after completing your CSM®.

With A-CSM certification, you will be able to increase engagement by facilitating communication between the Scrum team members and the Stakeholders. You can further enhance your Scrum implementation skills and knowledge and will be able to show your advanced value as a highly skilled Agile professional to the potential employer.

Prerequisites to achieve A-CSM certification

You just need to hold an active CSM certification from Scrum Alliance and you have at least 12 months of experience working as a Scrum Master.

Steps to become Advanced Certified ScrumMaster (A-CSM®)

  • Attend Advanced Certified ScrumMaster (A-CSM®) training from any registered education provider of Scrum Alliance
  • Complete all the learning objectives by the approved educator
  • Accept the A-CSM License Agreement and complete your Scrum Alliance membership profile

Target audience of the course

The target audience of A-CSM course is the professionals who have work experience in Scrum, play the role of the Scrum Master in the Agile organizations and are CSM® certified.

Career path of Advanced Certified ScrumMaster (A-CSM)

Once you have upgraded your skills with the Advanced Certified Scrum Master (A-CSM) certification, you are ready to master in Certified Scrum Professional ScrumMaster® (CSP-SM®).

  • Product Owner track

Scrum Product Owner is the voice of the Stakeholders and the Customers. The Scrum Product Owner solely owns the product backlog and acts as the cornerstone of the Scrum project. A Product Owner is responsible for increasing the product value and delivers a valuable product at a high speed by strictly following the implementation process.

Salary of the CSPO certified professionals

As per the Payscale.com, the average salary of a CSPO certified professional is $101k per annum. The salary of a Product Owner keeps varying based on the skills an individual has, year/years of experience he/she has, and the most affecting factor is the advanced level certifications for the Product owner to enhance your probability of landing the best jobs in the market. 

c) Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO®)

A professional, very much interested in handling the business side of the project [such as Earned Value, Return On Investment, Velocity, Backlog calculations etc.], is probably the right person to attain a Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO®) certification. Being a CSPO, you are responsible for creating a product vision, prioritizing the product backlog, and giving the customers exactly what they are looking for [or intuitively want]

Prerequisites to achieve Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO®) certification

There is no prerequisite to attend CSPO training. However, in order to earn this certification, an individual need to attend 2-days of CSPO course taught by Certified Scrum Trainer (CST).

Steps to achieve Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO®) certification

The following steps need to be followed to earn a Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO®) certification:

  • Attend two days (16 hours) of CSPO course mentored by Certified Scrum Trainer (CST)
  • Scrum Alliance will release the certification designating you as a Certified Scrum Product Owner®
  • The certification will be valid for 2-years from the date of issuance

Target audience of the CSPO course

This 16 hours of CSPO course is curated for an individual who is responsible for directing a product and setting up finance during a Scrum project implementation. Scrum Masters can also take this training without thinking that the CSM course is a prerequisite to attend the CSPO course. The CSPO certification can be viewed as an alternative to the CSM course. The target audience for this course is:

  • Project Managers
  • Developers
  • Product Owners
  • Managers-Software development
  • Architects-Software development
  • Product Managers
  • Software developers
  • Software testers
  • Team leads/Team members interested in learning more about Scrum
  • Scrum Masters
  • Executives
  • Business Stakeholders

Career Path of the CSPO certified professionals

After mastering the CSPO course, you can level-up your knowledge with Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner (A-CSPOSM) and then Certified Scrum Professional®-Product Owner (CSP®-PO).

d) Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner (A-CSPO) 

If you are a Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO), you are responsible for maximising the product’s business value and understanding the Stakeholder’s requirements to deliver the best at regular intervals [known as Sprints or Iterations]. Now, the next step is to achieve the advanced level certification- Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner (A-CSPO℠) certification.

Prerequisites to achieve Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner(A-CSPO) certification 

A candidate must hold an active CSPO certification to attend Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner® (A-CSPO®) course from Scrum Alliance and at least 1-year of work experience as a Scrum Product Owner.

Steps to become Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner (A-CSPO) certification 

  • If you have an active CSPO certification, attend an A-CSPO certification training to learn more techniques in managing the Stakeholders and Product Backlog
  • Complete successfully all the educator-designed components of an approved institute.
  • Scrum Alliance will ask you to accept the A-CSPO license agreement and complete your Scrum Alliance membership profile.
  • You will get A-CSPO certification from Scrum Alliance. Maintain your certification by renewing your certification every two years.

Target audience of the A-CSPO course

This course is targeted towards practicing Product Owners who are looking to upgrade their career with the basic mechanics of the PO role and are CSPO certified.

Career Path of the A-CSPO certified professionals

Certified Scrum Professional Product Owner® (CSP-PO®) certification is the next certification in the list after A-CSPO certification.

  • Developer Track

Today, Scrum Developers have more demand in the market because of their specialized Agile and Scrum skills and proficiency in continuous improvement. Earning Certified Scrum Developer (CSD) certification is expanding the need of the Scrum Developers in Agile enterprises. Today, Scrum Developers are earning an average of $82k per year, playing the roles like .Net Developer, Software Engineer, IT Project Manager, and many more.

e) Certified Scrum Developer® (CSD)

Certified Scrum Developers® exhibit their knowledge through formal training and technical skills assessments. Being certified, they demonstrate their practical as well as theoretical understanding of Agile and Scrum principles along with Agile Engineering skills. 

Prerequisites to achieve Certified Scrum Developer (CSD) certification

An individual with programming knowledge can attend CSD course. To earn this certification, an individual needs to undergo at least 5-days of formal CSD training course instructed by a Scrum Alliance Registered Education Provider (REP) and a Scrum Alliance Authorized Instructor. 

On the other hand, the certification offers the privilege to the candidates who are CSM certified. They can skip the first 2 days and directly join from the 3rd day of the technical training.

Steps to earn CSD certification

Steps to earn CSD certification

The following steps are followed to earn CSD certification:

  • Enroll for 5 days of CSD course taught by the Scrum Alliance approved CSD instructor. It consists of two tracks to get CSD certification and the tracks are:
    • Track 1-
      • Attend CSM course (for 2 days)
      • CSD technical course (for 3 days)
    • Track 2- 
      • A basic introductory course (for 1 day)
      • CSD technical course (for 3 days)
      • CSD technical elective course (for 1 day)
  • After successfully completing the course (following track 1/track 2), Scrum Alliance will send you a CSD license agreement.
  • Congrats! You are now CSD certified. The certification will be added to your profile, which will be valid for another 2 years.
  • Maintain your certification by earning Scrum Education Units® (SEUs) and by renewing your certification in every two years.

Target audience of the CSD course

The Certified Scrum Developer® certification is beneficial for the software developers (programmers) building software in the Scrum organizations. This course will benefit 

  • Architects
  • DBAs
  • Designers 
  • Developers, Development Managers
  • Directors 
  • Product Managers
  • QA Engineers, Software Engineers
  • Technical Analysts, Technical Leads
  • Technical Writers 
  • Testers
  • Anyone who wants to be a good developer well aware of top Agile practices such as TDD, Extreme Programming etc.

Career path of CSD certified professional

Level-up your skills with Certified Scrum Professional® (CSP) certification, once you have mastered this course. 

f) Certified Scrum Professionals (CSP) certifications

Certified Scrum Professionals let their teams constantly improve the implementation of Agile and Scrum practices and principles applied to the Scrum project. This certification marks CSP’s experience, skills enhanced through training and a proven Scrum knowledge in development after being certified as CSD®.

 Prerequisites to achieve Certified Scrum Professional® (CSP) certifications

An individual should hold an active Certified Scrum Developer (CSD) certification issued by the Scrum Alliance in order to achieve Certified Scrum Professional® certifications. In addition, an individual should:

  • An individual should have at least 36 months of working experience as a Scrum Master/ Product Owner/ Developer/ Other in Agile or Scrum based project in the recent past 5 years.
  • At least 70 SEUs [Scrum education units] in past 3 years

Steps to earn Certified Scrum Professional® certifications

  • If you have an active CSD certification, you are eligible to enroll your name for the Certified Scrum Professional® certification course as per the respective certifications 
  • Attend the CSP training to enhance your Agile facilitation and coaching skills
  • Complete all the educator-designed components. These components may incorporate pre- or post- course work as regraded essential by your Certified Scrum Trainer (CST) to finish the learning objectives
  • Complete your Scrum Alliance membership profile by agreeing to the CSP-SM/PO/D license agreement and fulfilling a minimum of 36 months of work experience as a Scrum Master/ Product Owner/ Developer respectively
  • Maintain your CSP certification by renewing a certification every 2-years.

Target audience of the Certified Scrum Professional® (CSP) course

The course is designed for the Product Owners, Scrum Masters, and Developers with working knowledge ready to take the next step in their career learning. Agile leaders, including coaches, consultants, project managers, facilitators, and technical leaders, all can  be benefited from enhancing their skills with the CSP certification.

Career Path of the Certified Scrum Professional® (CSP®) certified professionals

An individual with CSP® certification is expected to demonstrate the practical as well as the theoretical knowledge and a body of knowledge of the Scrum roles, events, and artifacts of the complete Scrum framework. Certified Scrum Professional (CSP®) certification provides a gateway for those who are looking for their future as a Certified Scrum Trainer (CST), Team Coach, Agile Coach globally.

2. Guide Level certifications

Guide level certifications are aimed at professionals who have advanced knowledge and well-qualified coaches, trainers, mentors, and thought leaders who spread their knowledge on Agile practices and Scrum framework among the professionals. Scrum Alliance provides one certification focused on trainers and two certifications in the coaching category. Individuals with Guide level certifications are considered as professional certifications holder from Scrum Alliance. Let’s see Guide or Elevated level certifications as follows:

a) Certified Team CoachSM (CTC)

The Certified Team Coach (CTC) usually works at the team level with the management, Scrum teams, and Stakeholders. Enterprise hires Certified Team Coaches to provide coaching, facilitation, training, mentoring, impediment removing, and leadership to encourage collaboration, continuous development, and value delivery across multiple teams and departments.  

Prerequisites to become CTC

  • An active Certified Scrum Professional certification 
  • 1,000 hours of Agile coaching experience in the last 2 years without considering your role as Scrum Master
  • Coaching experience in at least 2 organizations 
  • Must be actively participated in at least 5 Agile events
  • Practical experience of Scrum implementation and coaching experience in Agile and Scrum framework.

Who can attend CTC training?

The Certified Team Coach (CTC) is specifically targeted to the Scrum Evangelist interested in coaching at multiple levels. Also, Certified Scrum Professional (CSP-SM/PO) is the recommended certification that will make you eligible to gain CTC credential.  

Steps to achieve CTC certification

  • To earn Certified Team Coach (CTC) certification, an individual need to submit an application with the application fee
  • Scrum Alliance will cross-check the application to meet all the prerequisites required to earn this credential
  • Once it is approved, individuals are required to pay an annual fee to maintain this certification



b) Certified Enterprise Coach (CEC)

The Certified Enterprise Coach (CEC) by Scrum Alliance is skilled at Scrum (both in theoretical and practical knowledge). The Certified Enterprise Coaches (CECs) have years of experience in enterprise Scrum transformations and a detailed understanding of implementing Scrum practices and principles. The CECs guide organizations towards the challenges organizations are facing during Scrum adoption. 

Prerequisites to become Certified Enterprise Coach (CEC)

A candidate aspiring Certified Enterprise Coach (CEC) credential must possess:

  • Knowledge of Scrum practices, proven leadership, and coaching skills 
  • An active CSP-SM™ or CSP-PO™ or CSP® certification 
  • Working experience in Scrum team roles
  • Coaching experience in at least three organizations
  • 2,000 hours over the past 3 years of work experience as a Coach. 

Who can attend CEC training?

This training is aimed at Agile professionals who are looking to guide the organizations in their Agile transformation. 

Steps to achieve CEC certification

  • Submit an application form along with a fee
  • Scrum Alliance does a peer assessment, candidates are asked to pay the annual fee.

c) Certified Scrum Trainer® (CST)

The CST® certification is the most sought-after and only trainer-centric certification offered by Scrum Alliance. As a CST, you are the individuals who wishes to transform the way of working of the people and team they work with. Successful completion of the CST course will let you teach CSM or CSPO courses.   

Prerequisites to become Certified Scrum Trainer® (CST)

To become a CST, you should have:

  • In-depth knowledge of the Scrum concepts, practices, and principles
  • An active Certified Scrum Professional ScrumMaster™ (CSP-SM™) or Certified Scrum Professional Product Owner™ (CSP-PO™) or CSP® designation from Scrum Alliance
  • Hands-on experience in Scrum implementation as a ScrumMaster, Product Owner, or Development team member
  • Teaching experience in partnership with any Certified Scrum Trainer (CST) or independently-
    • Taught to at least 100 candidates
    • Hosted at least 10 or more days ScrumMaster training sessions 
  • Respective certifications in order to train on the courses (e.g. if want to train on CSPO, an individual should hold an active CSPO certification.  

Target audience of Certified Scrum Trainer® (CST) course

This certification is for the candidates who are well-versed in executing the Agile practices and desire to train other professionals.

Steps to achieve Certified Scrum Trainer® (CST) course

  • Individuals seeking CST certification need to submit an application with by paying an application fee
  • Trainer Approval Community (TAC) will review this application 
  • Once approved by them, Interview and Certification panel will invite those individuals to attend an in-person interview
  • Your performance in the interview will decide your full CST status or denial of the CST certification
    • If approved as a CST, you are requested to sign the CST agreement and pay the annual fee
    • If canceled, your interview TAC will reschedule the interview

3. Agile Leadership certifications

As the world of work is changing continuously and becomes complex, enterprises and leaders are asked to continuously deliver more innovative products and services, keeping the culture of an organization zestful and gratifying. Agile Leaders produces extraordinary teams, communicate with a clear purpose, and achieve extraordinary business outcomes to the customers and their organizations. 

There are two Agile Leadership credentials are available:

  • Certified Agile Leader I (CAL I)
  • Certified Agile Leader II (CAL II)

These two CAL certifications (CAL I + CAL II) by Scrum Alliance represents unique two-part education and practice-based programs to build Agile leadership competencies. The CAL certifications provides a platform to enhance your leadership skills and will make you a better leader, irrespective of your current role in the organization. We will see them in detail later on.

Whom Agile Leadership  training is for?

The participants for this program varies according to their professional background and work experience. The key factor here is their wish to transform workplaces into better way by executing Agile values, practices, and metrics. The CAL certifications are designed for anyone participating and interested in leading an Agile transformation. Agile Leadership training are designed for:

  • Coach/Consultant
  • Managers 
  • Executives
  • Crave to play a Leadership role

Let’s take a look at two kinds of CAL certifications:

a) Certified Agile Leadership I certification

Certified Agile Leadership I (CAL I) is an introductory professional course that comprises of in-depth leadership development learning objectives across five categories.  

Prerequisites to attend CAL I certification

There are no eligibility criteria to attend CAL I training. This credential can be achieved after successfully completing the set of learning objectives. The certification has no expiry date. The digital badge earned after the certification remarks your start on your agile journey.

Career Path after CAL I certification

After CAL I certification, you can take CAL II certification to complete your Certified Agile Leadership (CAL) certifications. 

Career Path after CAL II certification

With CAL II certification, you will be able to guide leaders in applying, growing, and sharing your Agile leadership journey with the Scrum teams.

Prerequisites to attend CAL II certification

To earn this credential, individuals must have CAL I certification and successful accomplishment of:

  • Advanced Education- additional education on a unique leadership development topic, customized according to your learning journey and taught by an approved CAL educator
  • Validated Practice- implementing the newly earned skills at work.

Renewal Policy of Scrum Alliance certifications

Scrum Alliance always aims to keep the certifications and training program updated. According to Scrum Alliance, certification holders need to maintain their certifications by renewing every two years. The fee to renew the level-based certifications are:

  • Foundation level certifications are renewed by paying $100 renewal fee
  • Advanced level or Professional level certifications are renewed by earning 40 Scrum Education Units (SEUs) and paying $250 as a renewal fee
  • Coach and Trainer based certifications must be renewed annually and are required to meet all the current requirements for each such renewal.

Job roles available for Scrum Alliance certified professionals

Some of the common job roles played by the Scrum Alliance certified are transformational leads, transformation coaches, Scrum Masters, developers, managers, engineers, testers, technical writers and architects. 

Scrum Alliance also maintains its own job panel to assist community members in their job search. If you want to know more about the recent job postings, career news, blogs, and more, you can visit Agile careers section of the Scrum Alliance.    

KnowledgeHut

KnowledgeHut

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KnowledgeHut is an outcome-focused global ed-tech company. We help organizations and professionals unlock excellence through skills development. We offer training solutions under the people and process, data science, full-stack development, cybersecurity, future technologies and digital transformation verticals.
Website : https://www.knowledgehut.com

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2 comments

nandha gopal sharma 06 Aug 2019

I feel very grateful that I read this. The ways of explanation are fabulous. It is very helpful and very informative information about the scrum alliance career path. thanks for this valuable information!

Richard 14 Aug 2019

Good information to enhance the career

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Why Do We Use Fibonacci Series for Estimation

In this article, my focus is on sharing my experience as a Trainer/Mentor/Coach to Agile teams with respect to Agile estimations; and on using the Fibonacci sequence as scale to size the Story. What will you learn in this article? Agile practitioners mostly use Story points as a measure for estimation, typically using the Fibonacci scale. In this article we are going to understand the top reasons why we use the Fibonacci series for estimation, and how it works in practice. Before we get to the details, let us try to understand some of the fundamentals. Why do we need to estimate?Estimates help the project team to: Identify the time & effort required to arrive at the project schedule Identify the right number of people required to do the work Arrive at the budget by rolling up the cost of all activities required to complete the work; and Prioritize the work in conjunction with the value that will be delivered. Some software developers fear to provide effort estimates as they are accountable to complete their work within the time.  Hence, they take so much time to get into the details to make sure they have enough information to provide the estimates. This sometimes may not be possible during the beginning of the project as the team may not have enough information on hand to provide the effort estimates for all the tasks to be performed. Hence the order of magnitude (ROM, Budget or Definitive) will be applied at various stages during the project based on the available information to predict the effort needed to complete the activities. Agile Estimation  Typically, in traditional project management, effort estimations may or may not be agreed upon by the entire team. Estimates may either be given by the Project Manager/Tech Lead to the team or the developers/testers may estimate for the piece of work that they have been assigned. This way of estimating a project does not provide an opportunity for the team to collaborate. There may be a difference of opinion with the team members in the effort that need to be spent on an activity. The way the estimations are done within an Agile team is little different. It is just not about the measure used to estimate the effort (for example Story Points), but ensures that the team collaborate among themselves, thus providing an opportunity for knowledge sharing. This helps the accuracy of the estimates when compared to doing individual vs group estimates as the team members come from different backgrounds and roles (developers, testers, quality analysts, business analysts). An Agile team effort estimate focuses on relative sizing of user stories and does not focus on the duration; hence it is faster. The team learns to size the story relatively and accurately over a period of a few iterations (sprints), thus improving the predictability (arrived through establishing consistent velocity over a period of few iterations) as well.  Planning Poker is commonly used as the planning exercise for the team to collaborate and size the stories. Planning Poker uses Fibonacci sequence to assign a value to the epic/feature/story. What is Fibonacci Series?  According to Oxford dictionary, Fibonacci Series is : “ a series of numbers in which each number ( Fibonacci number ) is the sum of the two preceding numbers. The simplest is the series 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144 etc” The formula to arrive at a Fibonacci sequence is: Xn = Xn-1 + Xn-2 This sequence will be slightly modified when used in Agile estimations: typically, it will not have values beyond 100 and may have 0, ½, 1, 2, 3, 5,8, 13, 20, 40, 100. Some teams limit the highest value as 21 and use 0, 1/2, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21. Top 3 Reasons Why Using the Fibonacci Sequence Will Make You Better at Estimating Tasks  1. Weber–Fechner law: “The Weber–Fechner law refers to two related hypotheses in the field of psychophysics, known as Weber's law and Fechner's law. Both laws relate to human perception, more specifically the relation between the actual change in a physical stimulus and the perceived change. This includes stimuli to all senses: vision, hearing, taste, touch, and smell” Applying the law to Numerical Cognition,  “Psychological studies show that it becomes increasingly difficult to discriminate between two numbers as the difference between them decreases. This is called the distance effect. This is important in areas of magnitude estimation, such as dealing with large scales and estimating distances. It may also play a role in explaining why consumers neglect to shop around to save a small percentage on a large purchase, but will shop around to save a large percentage on a small purchase which represents a much smaller absolute dollar amount”  (source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Weber%E2%80%93Fechner_law) The Fibonacci sequence very well corresponds to Weber’s law. The values in the Fibonacci sequence are about 60% higher than the previous value, and hence applying relative sizing is much easier. It is very challenging to distinguish the size of two numbers which are adjacent to each other, by just looking at the objects. Let us take an example of a football and cricket ball. The approximate diameter of a cricket ball would be 2.8 to 2.86 inches whereas the diameter of a football would be 8.66 inches. It is easy to distinguish the relative size of these two (i.e., approximately the diameter of a football is 3 times that of a cricket ball). However, it is very challenging to distinguish between two cricket balls that vary 1 inch in diameter, unless you measure both. If you look at the Fibonacci sequence, the relative size between two adjacent numbers is more than 60% and this helps us to be able to size them accordingly.   2. Reflect Uncertainty The smaller value assigned from the Fibonacci sequence to a user story usually means that the story is well understood, and the user story follows INVEST (Independent, Negotiable, Valuable, Estimable, Small and Testable) guidelines. Whereas the largest value denotes the story is not well understood or it needs to be broken down further. Smaller stories can be confidently estimated by the team in detail. A general practice from matured Agile teams is that the Fibonacci sequence is restricted up to 21 (0,1,1,2,3,5,8,13,21) and any story which is of size beyond 21 will have to be broken down further. This ensures that the team is not giving any room for greater uncertainty and good practice for the team to write better stories under the INVEST guidelines. 3. Comparison Though it is not mandatory to use Fibonacci sequence for story point estimations, the sequence is easier to understand and adoptable by the team. Individuals are better at comparison than estimation.  The easy sequence and distinguishable values of Fibonacci sequence helps to estimate by not measuring the objects but by comparison. How Does Fibonacci Agile Estimation Work in Practice?  When do you think is the right time for the Agile team to estimate user stories that are prioritized by the Product Owner in the product backlog? In my experience, I would say that the estimates (story point sizing) should happen during the Iteration/Sprint backlog grooming sessions. This gives the team the time to go through the user stories in detail, collaborate and mutually agree using the Planning Poker exercise.  Then what do we do in Sprint Planning? – This ceremony should be used to pick the stories from the product backlog (fulfils Definition of Ready), that can be completed within the iteration/sprint and then breakdown the stories into tasks and do one more level of estimation which is effort estimation denoted in hours. Let us say a team is assigned a task to estimate a reporting module to be developed: The team would agree that it is a difficult task to provide an effort estimation and it would take a longer time to complete; but how long will it take? Using Simple, Medium and Complex categorization would simply mean that the estimate falls into the Complex category; but how complex is it? Breaking down the requirement into granularized tasks, getting to the minute details and then arriving at an effort estimation would be a complex process and time consuming as well. Can the team take linear sequence (1,2,4,8,10,12,14,16….) and size them for a high-level estimation? Is it possible to size between 50 and 52? What can be defined as the highest scale? Using Fibonacci series helps the team to size the stories which have a distinguishable value and as discussed earlier, matured Agile teams use modified Fibonacci series and have highest scale of 21 to size a story. As discussed above, the Fibonacci numbers are 60% above than the previous number, and that helps in relative sizing. Summary There are various methods to estimate user stories, like T-Shirt sizing, Dot voting, Affinity Mapping etc. Story points is the widely used measurement for sizing the user stories. Fibonacci series helps the team to compare between two stories; and its very nature of distinguishable values helps them to fit the story into the right size that reflects uncertainties, which further helps the team to refine the story to remove those uncertainties. Hope this article was useful to you.
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This also determines the overall quality of the finished product. Here are the top Agile methods involved in Scrum to allow the team to be more productive over time. 1. Eradicating obstaclesOne of the most important duties of a Scrum Master is to get rid of obstacles early and throughout the development process. This begins with asking appropriate questions while User Stories are being written. This gives developers space and time to do their work. While they are working, a Scrum Master also protects the development team from any disturbances from the stakeholders.In situations when the team does get interrupted, it is recommended for the team members to contact the Scrum Master to get their queries and issues resolved. Having a clear and focused mind is the key to operating at the highest level.The most obvious step is to avoid distractions as they are the primary reason for decreasing a team’s productivity. The team is unable to focus when they are asked to clarify why their productivity went down.2. Daily scrum meetings An efficient team always has a small group of professionals, the numbers can go to a maximum of 9. Anything more than that leads to communication issues and more consumption of time in meetings or huddles. A bigger team, in cases, can be split into two or more. A big team leads to more complications and misunderstandings and hence, is not a good idea. A larger team means more loss in information while exchanging thoughts and ideas and that will result in everybody in the team spending more time and effort to get any message or data across. 3. Team Capacity It is a known fact that all the team members must attend the daily scrum every day. The meeting can last for not more than 15 minutes every day to get an overview of the proceedings and the advancement of the undertaken work. All the concerns and ideas put across and need solutions during the meetings can be parked so that all of them can be addressed together. Any topic not related to the purpose of the meeting can be talked about at a fixed but separate time of the day.Furthermore, communicating with each other during the meeting will help in exchanging more information.4. Product backlog The backlog is the key to knowing where a product goes and what needs to be created on priority. So, everything in a project must be kept and properly maintained via a backlog. User Stories should have enough details and can be reordered in case of a change in priority. More accurate User Stories lead to less time consumption for the development team to understand them.An up to date and well-maintained backlog during an Agile project should have enough User Stories for at least one or two sprints.5. Constantly improving mindsetScrum is a continuous method that involves development because the whole method can be changed, not just the software. The point is to find something that requires alterations and to achieve it in the next sprint. This allows the team to tackle one issue at a time and move forward.Finding a clear move in the sprint retrospective to support the team is necessary. Someone must take ownership to act and make things work. This can be achieved by initiating small, easy actions that are less time-consuming first. During a sprint retrospective, it is recommended to take suggestions from each attendee and go for the most appropriate one. After that, a plan will be laid out to realize the chosen idea.6. Interruption bufferWhile running an application in production, it is necessary to keep maintaining and providing new features. However, there can be interruptions, like a bug that needs to be reported urgently or another team needing a developer for assistance. The point is, Sprints will be prone to interruptions, and provisions must be made to deal with these problems. A capable Scrum Master will log all these interruptions noting the number of interruptions, the time consumed in dealing with them and then add them to the next sprint.7. Have a vision of the task at handThe team works more efficiently in getting the deliverables when the Scrum Master already has laid out a blueprint to work on. This also includes having metrics and other relevant charts displayed, doing which will also let stakeholders and colleagues track the production rate.Refreshing the burndown chart daily and displaying the desired sprint result will reflect the customer or team satisfaction. Furthermore, a roadmap showing the working of the product will further enhance the vision of the team. There are multiple ways of sharing information to give everybody the idea of how things are going on while working on the product.To concludeWhen looking at the broader picture of the correct way to motivate a team to get the desired output, a successful team follows a very realistic and simple approach by using plain common sense that is instilled by the Scrum Master. Understanding how the team works and realizing the working style of each team member is one of the most important observations of an adept Scrum Master. It is a collaborative effort that cannot be done by one person but needs responsible efforts from every working member on the task. After all, it is not about ‘Me’ but ‘Us’ that helps in building a product successfully on time.
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How Does an Agile Mindset Pave the Way for Professional Success?

In the days before the advent of Agile, most large organizations were run with a bureaucratic mindset. Even as Agile has taken over the world of work today, a large number of professionals and organizations are yet to embrace the Agile mindset as they are stuck in the traditional paradigm.  Traditionally, the primary focus of managers in a top-down hierarchy has been on bringing in funds for the organization and its investors, even as they are sorting out work in line with the rules, jobs, and criteria that have been pre-determined. The existence of a bureaucratic mindset, therefore, promotes hierarchy over collaboration. When the workforce has a bureaucratic attitude, the productivity at an organizational level gets impeded. This is especially the case in situations that are subject to rapid changes concerning business needs,opportunities, or challenges.. What is an Agile mindset? An Agile mindset is a mentality of having a positive, feedback-based,and flexible perspective. This mindset places high regard on mutual respect, collaboration, improvement, iterative construction, and learning cycles. It takes pride in ownership, lays focus on delivering value, and has the inherent ability to adapt to change. An agile mindset is critical to cultivating high-performing teams, capable of delivering amazing value for their customers. The Characteristic Traits of An Agile Mindset An agile mindset can be identified by certain behavioral traits. These are applicable at the level of an individual, team, and enterprise at large.  High degree of collaborative efforts: Teamwork is crucial to foster an Agile mindset. Those who wish to cultivate this mindset should have a thorough understanding of objectives, deliverables, and ownership. Tolerance, mutual respect, and a team-player’s attitude are essential for effective collaboration. Self-motivated: A certain sense of motivation will be displayed by professionals having this mindset. They are often driven enough to execute tasks until completion and even develop better strategies to perform tasks. Self-motivated teams are empowered teams as they are capable of driving success with their efforts while taking responsibility for their actions at the same time. Customer-focused and outcome-driven: Delivering value to customers within the stipulated deadlines and budget is second nature to those with an Agile mindset. Customer’s needs are top priority and an outcome-based approach will be followed to meet them.Speed and Transparency: A quick turnaround time is a hallmark of Agile environments. Work is often done in small increments over time while the feedback loops are shortened to boost progress and reduce errors. Transparency is a trait that every member of the team should possess so that work can be entrusted to them without a second thought. Getting Ahead with An Agile Mindset  A significant aspect of having an Agile mindset is an individual’s willingness to remain unfazed in failure, yet open to learning and growing to prevent the same mistakes. As a professional in the dynamic digital age, one has no option but to embrace changes.  With new technologies, work processes and customer demands emerging daily, cultivating an Agile mindset has become imperative for professional growth. Farsighted organizations have already embarked on their Agile journeys, with 92% senior executives globally believing that organizational agility is critical to business success.  This calls for the need of an Agile workforce and translates into greater opportunities for skilled professionals with an Agile mindset. The true adoption of the Agile mindset cannot happen over-night, it takes a gradual shift in perspectives which will eventually guarantee lasting returns. Attending workshops led by Agile experts is a great way to get started with one’s journey towards developing an Agile mindset. Not only will it help shape one’s mindset but also open doors to exciting opportunities in Agile. 
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How Does an Agile Mindset Pave the Way for Profess...

In the days before the advent of Agile, most large... Read More