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Why Do Scrum Masters Get Paid so Much?

Is Scrum Master the best paying job? Do Scrum Masters are highly paid individuals? Though these two questions look very simple in asking but are very difficult in answering. Let’s dig in and find out the salary range that Scrum Masters are earning.  The survey conducted by ‘Age of Product’ (Stephen Wolpers and Sumit Mehta) in 2017, included Scrum Masters from 13 countries around the world. The salary of a Certified Scrum Master varies from country to country. Collated below are the salary ranges in USD for three important countries:US: 100,001 – 125,000UK: 60,001 - 70,000India: 20,001 – 30,000The monthly income of a Certified Scrum Master can be listed as follows-US: 8333 – 10416UK: 5000 – 5833India: 1667 - 2500The weekly income of a Certified Scrum Master, assuming 52 weeks for a year, the certified scrum master makes the following salary (in USD):US: 1923 – 2403UK: 1154 – 1346India: 384 - 577The hourly salary of Certified Scrum Master (CSM) makes the following(in USD):US: 48 – 60UK: 29 – 34India: 9.6 – 14Note: The figures mentioned here are in USD. Additional compensations for this job The certified scrum master can get additional compensations if he/she can take up a training for the community or get further certified in the line of his/her career. Salaries by company Here are some of the average salaries paid by the top companies to the certified Scrum Masters:TCS: 11,11,500/yearIBM: 16,07,000/yearAmdocs: 14,00,000/yearJP Morgan: 16,52,000/yearPhilips: 19,96,000/yearWhy do scrum masters get paid so much?According to Glassdoor, it is one of the 25 highest paying jobs in America.In an era in which software is constantly being updated and flying out the door, the ability to keep everyone connected and communicating, face to face if possible, is critical. A breakdown in communications leads to a breakdown in software. And a breakdown in software leads to a breakdown of the business.As companies are moving more to Agile, they have realized that scrum master is the core and important role in making the team productive, self -organized and follow the practices of Agile diligently.Job Description for certified scrum masterBelow are the on-job responsibilities of the Certified Scrum Master (CSM):Essential Duties:Guiding the team and organization on how to use Agile/Scrum practices and values to delight customers.Guiding the team on how to get the most of out of self-organization.Guiding the team on self-organizing to fill in the intentional gaps left in the Agile/Scrum frameworks.Assessing the Scrum Maturity of the team and organization and coaching the team to higher levels of maturity, at a pace that is sustainable and comfortable for the team and organization.Removing impediments or guiding the team to remove impediments by finding the right personnel to remove the impediment.Building a trusting and safe environment where problems can be raised without fear of blame, retribution, or being judged, with an emphasis on healing and problem-solving.Facilitating getting the work done without coercion, assigning, or dictating the work.Facilitating discussion, decision making, and conflict resolution.Assisting with internal and external communication, improving transparency, and radiating information.Supporting and educating the Product Owner, especially on grooming and maintaining the product backlog.Providing all support to the team using a servant leadership style whenever possible, and leading by example.Required Skills/Experience:Experience in playing the Scrum Master role for at least one year for a software development team that was diligently applying Scrum principles, practices, and theory.  (Adjust based on your necessity)Good skills and knowledge of servant leadership, facilitation, situational awareness, conflict resolution, continual improvement, empowerment, and increasing transparency.Knowledge of various well-documented patterns and techniques for filling in the intentional gaps left in the Scrum approach(example: numerous Burndown technologies, various Retrospective formats, handling bugs, etc.).Preferred Skills/Experience (Any of these is a plus):Experience is playing the Scrum Master role for at least two years for a software development team that was diligently applying Scrum principles, practices, and theory. (Adjust based on your necessity)Knowledge of other Agile approaches: XP, Kanban, Crystal, FDD, etc.Awareness and experience with widely successful Agile techniques: User Stories, ATDD, TDD, Continuous Integration, Continuous Testing, Pairing, Automated Testing, Agile Games.Applicable knowledge of the technologies used by the team.The experience in applying a wide variety of well-documented patterns and techniques for filling in the intentional gaps left in the Scrum approach (example: various Burndown technologies, many Retrospective formats, handling bugs, etc.).Excellent communication and mentoring skills.Tasks of the Certified Scrum MasterHelping the Development Team to create high-value productsCoaching the Development Team in self-organization and cross-functionalityRemoving impediments to the Development Team’s progressFacilitating Scrum events as requested or neededCoaching the Development Team in organizational environments in which Scrum is not yet fully adopted and understoodEnsuring that goals, scope, and product domain are understood by everyone on the Scrum Team as well as possibleFinding techniques for effective Product Backlog managementHelping the Scrum Team understand the need for clear and concise Product Backlog itemsUnderstanding product planning in an empirical environmentEnsuring the Product Owner knows how to arrange the Product Backlog to maximize the valueFacilitating Scrum events as requested or neededCompanies that prefer Certified Scrum MasterAccording to the Scrum Guides, “Scrum has been adopted by a vast amount of software development companies around the world.” Scrum has been used in education, manufacturing, marketing, operations, and other fields. If you have the skills in dealing with conflicts and you are an experienced facilitator, then following are the top companies in the world that hire the skilled Scrum Masters like you. According to the latest data on Glassdoor, the top companies preferring Scrum Master are:Answer Financial Inc. – Encino, CAPegasystems – Cambridge, MADonnelley Financial Solutions – Glen Mills, PAIntraEdge – Phoenix, AZWipro Limited, BengaluruZensar Technologies Limited, HyderabadJP Morgan Chase, HyderabadBarclays – PuneOrange, MumbaiFiserv – Pune, and many moreIt is more surprising that the Scrum Master salaries have increased in such a short span of time. Moreover, being a Scrum Master is not an easy role as it requires more of a servant leadership skills. So, the aim of the Scrum Master is always to finish-up the project in time without compromising the quality. Climb-up the ladder of Scrum with Scrum interview questions and answers! Find here.
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Why Do Scrum Masters Get Paid so Much?

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Why Do Scrum Masters Get Paid so Much?

Is Scrum Master the best paying job? Do Scrum Masters are highly paid individuals? Though these two questions look very simple in asking but are very difficult in answering. Let’s dig in and find out the salary range that Scrum Masters are earning.  

The survey conducted by ‘Age of Product’ (Stephen Wolpers and Sumit Mehta) in 2017, included Scrum Masters from 13 countries around the world. The salary of a Certified Scrum Master varies from country to country. 

Collated below are the salary ranges in USD for three important countries:

US: 100,001 – 125,000
UK: 60,001 - 70,000
India: 20,001 – 30,000

The monthly income of a Certified Scrum Master can be listed as follows-

US: 8333 – 10416
UK: 5000 – 5833
India: 1667 - 2500

The weekly income of a Certified Scrum Master, assuming 52 weeks for a year, the certified scrum master makes the following salary (in USD):

US: 1923 – 2403
UK: 1154 – 1346
India: 384 - 577

The hourly salary of Certified Scrum Master (CSM) makes the following(in USD):

US: 48 – 60
UK: 29 – 34
India: 9.6 – 14
Salary range of CSM
Note: The figures mentioned here are in USD.

 Additional compensations for this job

 The certified scrum master can get additional compensations if he/she can take up a training for the community or get further certified in the line of his/her career.

 Salaries by company

 Here are some of the average salaries paid by the top companies to the certified Scrum Masters:

  • TCS: 11,11,500/year
  • IBM: 16,07,000/year
  • Amdocs: 14,00,000/year
  • JP Morgan: 16,52,000/year
  • Philips: 19,96,000/year

CSM salaries by top companies
Why do scrum masters get paid so much?

According to Glassdoor, it is one of the 25 highest paying jobs in America.

In an era in which software is constantly being updated and flying out the door, the ability to keep everyone connected and communicating, face to face if possible, is critical. A breakdown in communications leads to a breakdown in software. And a breakdown in software leads to a breakdown of the business.

As companies are moving more to Agile, they have realized that scrum master is the core and important role in making the team productive, self -organized and follow the practices of Agile diligently.


Job Description for certified scrum master

Below are the on-job responsibilities of the Certified Scrum Master (CSM):

Essential Duties:

  • Guiding the team and organization on how to use Agile/Scrum practices and values to delight customers.

  • Guiding the team on how to get the most of out of self-organization.

  • Guiding the team on self-organizing to fill in the intentional gaps left in the Agile/Scrum frameworks.

  • Assessing the Scrum Maturity of the team and organization and coaching the team to higher levels of maturity, at a pace that is sustainable and comfortable for the team and organization.

  • Removing impediments or guiding the team to remove impediments by finding the right personnel to remove the impediment.

  • Building a trusting and safe environment where problems can be raised without fear of blame, retribution, or being judged, with an emphasis on healing and problem-solving.

  • Facilitating getting the work done without coercion, assigning, or dictating the work.

  • Facilitating discussion, decision making, and conflict resolution.

  • Assisting with internal and external communication, improving transparency, and radiating information.

  • Supporting and educating the Product Owner, especially on grooming and maintaining the product backlog.

  • Providing all support to the team using a servant leadership style whenever possible, and leading by example.

  • Required Skills/Experience:

  • Experience in playing the Scrum Master role for at least one year for a software development team that was diligently applying Scrum principles, practices, and theory.  (Adjust based on your necessity)

  • Good skills and knowledge of servant leadership, facilitation, situational awareness, conflict resolution, continual improvement, empowerment, and increasing transparency.

  • Knowledge of various well-documented patterns and techniques for filling in the intentional gaps left in the Scrum approach(example: numerous Burndown technologies, various Retrospective formats, handling bugs, etc.).

  • Preferred Skills/Experience (Any of these is a plus):

  • Experience is playing the Scrum Master role for at least two years for a software development team that was diligently applying Scrum principles, practices, and theory. (Adjust based on your necessity)

  • Knowledge of other Agile approaches: XP, Kanban, Crystal, FDD, etc.

  • Awareness and experience with widely successful Agile techniques: User Stories, ATDD, TDD, Continuous Integration, Continuous Testing, Pairing, Automated Testing, Agile Games.

  • Applicable knowledge of the technologies used by the team.

  • The experience in applying a wide variety of well-documented patterns and techniques for filling in the intentional gaps left in the Scrum approach (example: various Burndown technologies, many Retrospective formats, handling bugs, etc.).

  • Excellent communication and mentoring skills.

Tasks of the Certified Scrum Master

  • Helping the Development Team to create high-value products

  • Coaching the Development Team in self-organization and cross-functionality

  • Removing impediments to the Development Team’s progress

  • Facilitating Scrum events as requested or needed

  • Coaching the Development Team in organizational environments in which Scrum is not yet fully adopted and understood

  • Ensuring that goals, scope, and product domain are understood by everyone on the Scrum Team as well as possible

  • Finding techniques for effective Product Backlog management

  • Helping the Scrum Team understand the need for clear and concise Product Backlog items

  • Understanding product planning in an empirical environment

  • Ensuring the Product Owner knows how to arrange the Product Backlog to maximize the value

  • Facilitating Scrum events as requested or needed


Companies that prefer Certified Scrum Master

According to the Scrum Guides, “Scrum has been adopted by a vast amount of software development companies around the world.” 

Scrum has been used in education, manufacturing, marketing, operations, and other fields. If you have the skills in dealing with conflicts and you are an experienced facilitator, then following are the top companies in the world that hire the skilled Scrum Masters like you. According to the latest data on Glassdoor, the top companies preferring Scrum Master are:

  • Answer Financial Inc. – Encino, CA

  • Pegasystems – Cambridge, MA

  • Donnelley Financial Solutions – Glen Mills, PA

  • IntraEdge – Phoenix, AZ

  • Wipro Limited, Bengaluru

  • Zensar Technologies Limited, Hyderabad

  • JP Morgan Chase, Hyderabad

  • Barclays – Pune

  • Orange, Mumbai

  • Fiserv – Pune, and many more

It is more surprising that the Scrum Master salaries have increased in such a short span of time. Moreover, being a Scrum Master is not an easy role as it requires more of a servant leadership skills. So, the aim of the Scrum Master is always to finish-up the project in time without compromising the quality. 

Climb-up the ladder of Scrum with Scrum interview questions and answers! Find here.

Mukundan

Mukundan Bashyam

Program/Project Manager

Mukundan Bashyam has more than 15 years of IT experience working in different roles such as Agile Coach, Scrum Master, and Product Owner. He is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP), Certified Scrum Master(CSM) and Certified Agile Coach from ICAgile. He is an accomplished Agile trainer for many organizations and a contributing author for KnowledgeHut. Mukundan has a Bachelor’s degree from Indian Institute of Technology (BHU)-Varanasi and a Master’s degree in Industrial Management from National Institute of Industrial Engineering (NITIE), Mumbai. He has worked with startups and large companies like Hewlett Packard(HP), Target Corporation India, Diageo, and Robert Bosch.  

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1 comments

Venu Madhav 21 May 2019

One of my friend has shared me this article, I loved this article and the website thanks for providing such kind of use full to the people. Great information on the salaries of scrum master Now I am planning to take CSM certification will someone help me with this.

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But, following prerequisites are needed to attend the SAFe® Practitioner (SP) exam-Familiar with Agile principlesAware of Scrum, Kanban, and XPExperience in software and hardware development processesExam Details:Time-span: Candidates have 90 minutes (1.5 hours), once the exam has commencedNumber of Questions: 45Passing Score: 35 out of 45 (78% passing score)Certification:On clearing the certification exam, the candidates will receive-SAFe® 4.5 Practitioner (SP) certificate3. SAFe 4.5 Product Owner/Product Manager (POPM)The SAFe® 4.5 POPM certification is intended to make Product Owners/Product Managers aware of the SAFe® principles, Lean-Agile tools, Agile development practices and SAFe® framework. Learning Objectives:As a SAFe® 4.5 (POPM), you should be able to-Implement SAFe® practices in the Lean enterpriseAttach SAFe® Lean-Agile principles and values to the PO/PM rolesCombine with Lean Portfolio ManagementImplement the Program Increment and deliver continuous valueCreate a PM/PM’s role action planWhat will attendees get? Training from a certified industry expertDownloadable courseware16 PDUs from PMI ® (PMI-ACP® / PMP® recertification)15 SEUs for CSPAttendee workbookMake you ready to attend the SAFe® 4 Product Owner/Product Manager (POPM) examOne-year membership to the SAFe® Community PlatformCourse completion certificateThe course is for:Product Managers, Product Line Managers, Product Owners, Business Owners, and Business AnalystsSolution Managers, Portfolio Managers, Program Managers, PMO personnel, and Process LeadsEnterprise, Solution, and System ArchitectsPrerequisites:The course is free to the desired attendees. But, following prerequisites are needed to attend the SAFe® 4.5 POPM exam.Leading SAFe® course attendeesWorking experience in the SAFe® environmentExperience with Lean, Agile, or other relevant methodsExam Details:Time-span: Candidates have 90 minutes (1.5 hours), once the exam has commencedNumber of Questions: 45Passing Score: 35 out of 45 (78% passing score)Certification:On clearing the certification exam, the candidates will receive-SAFe® 4.5 Product Owner/Product Manager (POPM) certificate4. SAFe® 4.5 Advanced Scrum Master (SASM) courseThe SAFe® 4.5 Advanced Scrum Master (SASM) certification equips the candidates with the skills that can be applied to lead high-performance Agile teams. Also, candidates will learn to apply DevOps practices and Kanban techniques and managing the interactions between the teams, stakeholders, and the Product Managers.Learning Objectives: As an SASM certified professional, you should be able to-Apply SAFe® principles in a multi-team environmentBuild a high-performing team and enable continuous improvementUnderstand Agile and Scrum anti-patternsFacilitate program planning, implementation, and value deliverySupport learning through participation in Communities of Practice and innovation cyclesWhat will attendees get? 16 PDUs and 16 SEUsFreely downloadable e-bookCourse completion certificateAttendee workbookOne-year membership to the SAFe® Community PlatformThe course is for:Existing Scrum MastersTeam leaders, project managers, and an Agile Team facilitator in a SAFe®Agile coachesEngineering and development managers executing AgileAgile Program ManagersProspective SAFe® Release Train EngineersPrerequisites:The course is free for the attendees. But, having at least one or more of the following certifications is recommended to attend the SAFe® 4.5 ASM exam-SAFe® 4 Scrum Master (SSM) certificationCertified Scrum Master (CSM) certificationProfessional Scrum Master (PSM) certificationExam Details:Time-span: Candidates have 120 minutes, once the exam has commencedNumber of Questions: 60Passing Score: 42 out of 60 (70% passing score)Certification:On clearing the certification exam, the candidates will receive-SAFe® 4.5 Advanced Scrum Master (SASM) certificate5. SAFe® 4.5 Scrum Master with SSM certification trainingSAFe® 4.5 Scrum Master(SSM) certification will make you well-versed with the main components of the Scaled Agile Framework and allow you to lead high-performing Agile teams. This course will help you to improve quality of the products reducing time-to-market.Learning Objectives:As a SAFe® 4.5 Scrum Master with SSM certification training, you should be able to-Discuss Scrum practices in a SAFe® implementing enterpriseFacilitate Scrum eventsFacilitate effective Iteration executionAssist DevOps implementationSupport effective Program Increment executionSupport continuous improvementTrain Agile teams to maximize business resultsAssist DevOps implementationWhat will attendees get?Prepare and support to clear the exam16 PDUs and 16 SEUs (under the category C)Course completion certificateThe course is for:New Scrum MastersPresent Scrum Masters, who wish to assume new roles in the SAFe® enterpriseTeam Leads who want to understand the Scrum Master roleSAFe® Release Train Engineers (RTEs) who want to coach for the role of the Scrum MastersPrerequisites:The course is free for the attendees. But, following prerequisites are a must to take the SAFe® 4.5 SSM exam-Familiarity with Agile principlesShould be aware of Scrum, Kanban, and eXtreme Programming (XP)Work experience in software and hardware development processesExam Details:Time-span: Candidates have 90 minutes (1.5 hours), once the exam has commencedNumber of Questions: 45Passing Score: 33 out of 45 (73% passing score)Certification:On clearing the certification exam, the candidates will receive-SAFe® 4.5 Scrum Master (SSM) certificate6. SAFe® 4.5 Release Train Engineer (RTE) certification courseSAFe® 4.5 RTE course will educate you on building the high-performing ART and understanding the role of  the RTE in a Lean-Agile transformation. Also, the attendees will learn to mentor the Agile leaders, teams and the Scrum Masters and how to prepare, plan and execute a Program Increment (PI).Learning Objectives: As a SAFe® 4.5 Scrum Master with SSM certification training, you should be able to-Apply Lean-Agile principles and tools to execute and deliver valueFostering continuous improvementConstruct a high-performing ART as a servant leader and coachPreparing an action plan to continue the learning journeyWhat will attendees get? Preparation and support for the SAFe® 4.5 Release Train Engineer (RTE) examCourse completion certificateOne-year membership to the SAFe® Community PlatformThe course is for:RTEs and Solution Train Engineers (STEs)Program and project managersScrum MastersLeaders and managersAgile coachesSAFe® Program Consultants (SPCs)Prerequisites:Following are the prerequisites required to attend the exam-Should have at least one current SAFe® certificationHave launched or participated in at least one ART and one PIExam Details:Time-span: Candidates have 120 minutes to complete the examNumber of Questions: 60Passing Score: 40 out of 45 (67% passing score)Each retake attempt costs $250Certification:On clearing the certification exam, the candidates will receive-SAFe® 4.5 RTE certificateNote:For all the courses, the registration fee includes the first exam attempt if the exam is taken within 30 days of course completion. Each retake attempt costs $50.After any of these SAFe® 4.5 certifications, you will get a Digital badge to promote your accomplishment online.Summing It UpToday, the SAFe® 4.5 certification is considered as a standard for Lean-Agile endeavours. Over 70% of the US Fortune 100 companies are utilising SAFe and the call for the SAFe® certified experts is rising at an exponential rate. The competitors that are searching for the more prominent vocation ahead, can go for the Leading SAFe® 4.5 certifications, as many employers seek candidates with credentials that convey their capability to work inside a SAFe® environment (verified through a SAFe® certification).
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