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Five Essential Factors for Agile Transformations in Enterprises

IntroductionFor enterprises working on projects following the rigid Waterfall methodology for a long time, switching to the Agile methodology can be challenging. They would need to come up with ways to make the transformation from Waterfall to Agile smooth and simple.In this blog, we discuss five essential success factors to the transition from Waterfall to Agile methodology. These factors will help any organisation adopt Agile and enhance organizational growth.The Five FactorsTechnologyThis refers to any process, tool or material that acts as a problem-solver and is the first aspect that companies rely on. However, most of the times, technology is the only aspect organisations focus on. Some notable examples are software tools like Mingle, Jira, ScrumWorks, or Greenhopper, and frameworks like Scrum and XP. These help teams in solving issues of their working pipeline and creating successful projects. However, the efforts of making a transition get hindered due to the absence of other factors.Organisational DesignThis aspect focuses on both the organisational and physical structure of a company. An organisation having multiple layers of decision-makers might result in interventions that will greatly slow down the transition efforts within an organisation.Coming to the physical structure of an organisation, it is difficult for teams to collaborate in organisations where the resources are in remote locations or are preferred to be kept only at specific locations. This will affect a team’s chemistry and result in a ‘Hard Sell’. Having a strong organisational design will improve the chances of an organisation being better in what they do.LeadershipAny company needs to hire managers who lead by example. This is because leadership improves the company's prospect and enables the manager to assign money, time, or people to the organisation, resulting in adopting Agile easily. When Agile is being adopted properly, the Agile methodology grows and thrives in the organisation and the company moves progressively in all its departments. If there are a lack of mentors to guide a manager in leading his or her team, then the company may have to look up to leaders at other levels.Proper transition efforts need proper leadership.PeopleAny organisation is built by employees and the type of progress the organisation makes depends solely on them. For employees to work together as a team with new ideas and efforts, they need to be physically on the same floor. Individual employees will react differently to the proposed changes and may lead to uncomfortable situations or challenges. For this, the organisation will need some energetic and motivated professionals to make the Agile transition. That will be people with energy and enthusiasm but with low egos.That's the key to making a successful transition happen.CultureThis is the most influential success factor. Typically, culture is also the most difficult one to change because any organisation takes years to develop one. A professional can solve this problem by first analysing what the challenges are and then design an appropriate response to the situation. Agile works appropriately with a collaborative and team-based culture where the people are clear in sharing thoughts and ideas and not afraid to make mistakes.The way forwardAn Agile transition should be smooth and productive for which any organisation needs to pay attention to these top 5 factors. Companies need to properly understand and plan to make an Agile change in the way they work, accommodate their resources and employees, maintain their infrastructure, avoid micromanagement, and let people interact with each other. Once these are taken care of, the rest will fall into place, leading to a successful Agile transformation.
Five Essential Factors for Agile Transformations in Enterprises
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Five Essential Factors for Agile Transformations in Enterprises

IntroductionFor enterprises working on projects following the rigid Waterfall methodology for a long time, switching to the Agile methodology can be challenging. They would need to come up with ways to make the transformation from Waterfall to Agile smooth and simple.In this blog, we discuss five essential success factors to the transition from Waterfall to Agile methodology. These factors will help any organisation adopt Agile and enhance organizational growth.The Five FactorsTechnologyThis refers to any process, tool or material that acts as a problem-solver and is the first aspect that companies rely on. However, most of the times, technology is the only aspect organisations focus on. Some notable examples are software tools like Mingle, Jira, ScrumWorks, or Greenhopper, and frameworks like Scrum and XP. These help teams in solving issues of their working pipeline and creating successful projects. However, the efforts of making a transition get hindered due to the absence of other factors.Organisational DesignThis aspect focuses on both the organisational and physical structure of a company. An organisation having multiple layers of decision-makers might result in interventions that will greatly slow down the transition efforts within an organisation.Coming to the physical structure of an organisation, it is difficult for teams to collaborate in organisations where the resources are in remote locations or are preferred to be kept only at specific locations. This will affect a team’s chemistry and result in a ‘Hard Sell’. Having a strong organisational design will improve the chances of an organisation being better in what they do.LeadershipAny company needs to hire managers who lead by example. This is because leadership improves the company's prospect and enables the manager to assign money, time, or people to the organisation, resulting in adopting Agile easily. When Agile is being adopted properly, the Agile methodology grows and thrives in the organisation and the company moves progressively in all its departments. If there are a lack of mentors to guide a manager in leading his or her team, then the company may have to look up to leaders at other levels.Proper transition efforts need proper leadership.PeopleAny organisation is built by employees and the type of progress the organisation makes depends solely on them. For employees to work together as a team with new ideas and efforts, they need to be physically on the same floor. Individual employees will react differently to the proposed changes and may lead to uncomfortable situations or challenges. For this, the organisation will need some energetic and motivated professionals to make the Agile transition. That will be people with energy and enthusiasm but with low egos.That's the key to making a successful transition happen.CultureThis is the most influential success factor. Typically, culture is also the most difficult one to change because any organisation takes years to develop one. A professional can solve this problem by first analysing what the challenges are and then design an appropriate response to the situation. Agile works appropriately with a collaborative and team-based culture where the people are clear in sharing thoughts and ideas and not afraid to make mistakes.The way forwardAn Agile transition should be smooth and productive for which any organisation needs to pay attention to these top 5 factors. Companies need to properly understand and plan to make an Agile change in the way they work, accommodate their resources and employees, maintain their infrastructure, avoid micromanagement, and let people interact with each other. Once these are taken care of, the rest will fall into place, leading to a successful Agile transformation.
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Five Essential Factors for Agile Transformations i...

IntroductionFor enterprises working on projects fo... Read More

Top Trends in Agile You Can’t Miss in 2020

Technology is evolving at breakneck speed and the information we consume every day continues to grow exponentially with every passing day. Analysing this complex mountain of data to make the right decisions informed by this data has become ever more challenging.Traditional models of project management like the waterfall method and hierarchical team structures are too rigid to respond to the fast-paced change organizations are facing today. The old ways of a rigidly structured workforce and work rules are not sustainable anymore.In such a rapidly evolving context, Agile is making the headlines everywhere. Companies of all sizes, including the likes of Amazon and Google are embracing the much talked about project management methodology.While Agile is commonly known for management of software projects, its usage has spread to all types of projects and there is a lot of buzz around how organizations, as a whole, should become Agile.Agile is said to be the new way businesses are building their competitive advantage.Top 3 Trends in AgileReduced project costs have always been a primary driver for Agile adoption. According to the 13th Annual State of Agile Report, reduced project costs continue to be the primary reason for Agile adoption.1. DevOps is a higher organizational priority in 2020According to recent research from the DevOps Institute, over 50% of organizations surveyed preferred to hire their DevOps teams from within the firm. Companies who wish to stay ahead of the curve must make drastic improvements in training and improving skills essential to DevOps. We can expect to see an aggressive pursuit of this in 2020.2. Upskilling and cross-skilling will be on the riseThe strained talent market has led to organizations and individuals investing heavily in upskilling and cross-skilling to meet the fast-growing demands for new skills. While IT professionals would need to become more competent across domains, developers would need to add new breadth to their portfolio of skills.3. Value Stream Management has come to the foreValue Stream Mapping helps change the way teams think about the Definition of Done (DoD) from an ‘I-did-my-job' to ‘the-value-is-realized' result. This is an effective way of changing behaviours and getting teams to think about the end-to-end lifecycle of what they’re working on. Teams who adopt Value Stream Management in 2020 will be able to base their next improvement experiments on data-driven decisions and prioritizations.
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Top Trends in Agile You Can’t Miss in 2020

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Failures in Agile Transformation

With the increase in Agile adoption across the organization, the stories are piling up too. Now the question is, are these success stories or the failure stances. Usually, in the conferences or meetups, you get to meet people from various establishments, this is just another way of getting to hear what worked or what not. Even in your own organization, you can feel the pulse of the transformation. There are many reasons why we end up with messy transformation, I have tried elaborating few in the discussion today but there’s more to it. As you read, you might connect with some of the points, let’s start the digging:1. AIMING ON PROCESSES AND NOT PEOPLEThe inclination of Agile is more towards people or individuals, we talk about empowering team, making them self-organized. We even talk about creating high performing teams which can deliver maximum value by the end of every increment. With the adoption of Scrum, where the core values involve Focus, Openness, Respect, Commitment and Courage at the root level, the ‘people’ factor becomes important. Ultimately, it the ‘people’ who work at the ground level for client satisfaction, to achieve this, they adopt processes for smoother workflow. That’s it! Organizations, during their transformation, tend to overlook this critical piece. Their approach becomes more inclined towards processes and they start considering Agile as a process but in fact, Agile is more of a mindset change. Process starts getting priority over people or individuals, always remember, process is just for supporting or helping the individuals with their work. People are not for the processes, even one of the four principles in the agile manifesto says: “Individuals and Interactions over Processes and tools”. I was surprised to hear in one of the trainings’ that people in the same team are using mail to communicate around the stories/deliverables. Can we not give preference to face to face interactions?2. MICROMANAGING THROUGH CEREMONIESSelf-organization is one of entities in Agile, the core says, trust your teams. Micromanagement not only hinders creativity, but it also impacts the morale of agile teams. Management or the scrum master should refrain from getting into the minute details during the scrum ceremonies. Most of the times, it is observed that the daily scrum gets converted into a status meeting either for the scrum master or for the technical lead. As a Scrum Master, you should help the team getting self-organized rather than being directive. One of the principles from Agile talks about giving the space and trust: “The best architectures, requirements, and designs emerge from self-organizing teams.” This enables the team to find their own solutions, helps them with innovation and most of all, teaches them the value of being a team. Every ceremony has its own schema and none of the ceremony is to track individual chores. You must trust your teams, remember, trust can do wonders, believe me, if you trust your people, they will never let you down. Here comes another principles’ focusing on the same. “Build projects around motivated individuals. Give them the environment and support they need and trust them to get the job done.”3. Hastening the TransformationAny change, whether it is for the system or for an individual, takes time. When was the last time you promised yourself to change one of your habits, was that easy? Almost every individual at the start of the year takes so many resolutions, how many do you think gets accomplished! Same goes with the transformation, it takes time and you will have to give because it is not just about the individual, it is about the organization. When the transformation journey starts, the delivery teams take the maximum heat. They are the ones who are expected to be Agile BUT the management usually lags, they are still in need of mindset to support the change. Just by doing the agile ceremonies is not being Agile, it comes with a wide variety of shift, be it - culture, technical, management or team. You have to accept that it is going to be a challenging journey which will have its own milestones and you cannot skip those. Also, it is long journey with hiccups, be ready to accept the challenges, learn from the mistakes and come up with the action items to improve.4. Scrum Roles Getting a Back SeatWhen teams in agile are formed, some of the roles are asked to play dual. In such scenarios, scrum master roles can be played either by the team lead or by someone who is ready for that extra piece. Though the role gets played, but the essence of this position goes for a toss. The focus just stays on delivery without instilling the purpose.  The organisation needs to acknowledge that scrum master'sis a fulltime job that helps teams in staying on track, motivated and helps them see their own progress through information radiators. Anyone else playing a dual role might not do justice and end up walking on two different tracks - not able to reach the goal in both the positions. The team needs someone who can teach, mentor, train and be with them. Just forming the team is not enough if the organization doesn't follow the best practices, such cases tend to get trapped.5. Lack of support from Middle managementIn my past experiences with the organizations in transformation mode, usually the middle layer is where the problem brews. Transformations get a go ahead from the top layer, but it gets difficult for the middle management to adopt. It is important to ensure alignment among the leaders of the organization on the aspiration and value of the transformation is done before moving ahead with the approach. In another example we can see a project manager being insecure as most of the juggling is being handled by the scrum master. In such cases, to prove their existence, the middle layer starts getting into the little details, this impacts the team as half the time they are functioning as per the project manager. Due to this, we hear a lot about the role of scrum master being questioned on their responsibilities. They are assumed to be just sitting and watching, in other words, doing nothing! According to the research led by AgileTurkey.org in Turkey in 2018, the two major hindrances to agile transformation were found out to be the resistance to transformation and culture transformation. Existing managers have a lot to do in order to manage with these two major challenges, they should be part of the transformation beginning from themselves, their day-to-day actions, and should guide the whole company by being supportive of the process.6. Tools over mindsetWith the transformation comes the need to use fancy tools and abide by ‘laws of the tools. Some feel proud in using the costliest tool, some make it a point to introduce the tool being used by the competitor. But is it worth it? Transformation can be done using ‘MS Excel’, there is no set protocol for focusing on the tool. Though the tools play an important part, but teams should focus on Agility and Scrum framework first and then on tools. You certainly need to track metrics like velocity, burn-down, estimates. But with the right mindset, the goal can be achieved with no trouble. This doesn't mean tools are bad, but it means mindset should be given priority over the extensive use of tools.7. Transformation as a Destination (Thinking Your Transformation Is Done)Many a time, we hear ‘We are now agile, we transformed in so and so year’ and what not. But is agile a destination, NO, it a journey, a never-ending journey. Some teams think just by implementing a bunch of backlogs, doing the ceremonies and tracking metrics, they are Agile. No, they are not!Whatever way out we have today are based on our experience, knowledge and the situation we are in. If any of the factors change, our solutioning will be different. Both the values and principles of the Agile Manifesto point to the continuity of the process. Responding to change over following a plan relates appropriately as much to the processes as to our sprint outputs. We have to understand that process is never whole. You just have to continue reflecting what worked and how to fine tune the process whenever required.8. Misunderstood cross-functional teamEvery time I speak about the delivery teams, at least one of the participants from the audience ask this question “We say it's a cross functional team, but my tester is not ready to code!” Have we understood it correct? None of the processes are bad, it is about how we adopt them that makes a difference. “Cross Functional Doesn’t Mean Everyone Can Do Everything, a cross-functional team has members with a variety of skills, but that does not mean each member has all of the skills.”  – Mike Cohn. This interpretation of cross-functional imposes a pressure on the delivery team which breaks the team apart and is sometimes the cause of conflicts among the members. As per scrum guide – “Cross functional teams are groups consisting of people from different functional areas of the company. – it should be formed not only with technical specialists (Back-end, Front-end developers, QA engineers, etc.), but also consists of member like Business Analysts, Marketing and UX specialists or anyone else taking an active part in the project.”9. Scrum for AllJust because everyone is going that way doesn’t mean that way is for you too! It is necessary to understand the current and what exactly you want it to be once the journey starts.  Scrum is one of the frameworks to help with complex adaptive projects, but it is not for all the products or projects. If you are transforming your IT helpdesk department, scrum might come out as a failure, the support team cannot say that they will be delivering 10 high priority tickets after the end of sprint, where sprint duration ranges from two week to a month. Second scenario can be the team handling production defects. But this does not mean that Scrum is bad, no it is not. It is just that these scenarios are not meant for Scrum.Every story is different and so are the reasons, as said earlier as well, this is not just a complete list, there can numerous other details depending on the situation. I will be happy to hear your viewpoints on the misalignment and disorientation. Lastly, it is significant to focus more on the people, the mindset and the collaboration to get better results.
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Failures in Agile Transformation

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The Career Path of a Certified Scrum Master: Foundational & Advanced Certifications

“When business goals are constantly varying, stepping on the right career path can be a tricky and on-going target.”So, you completed your 2-days of CSM certification training and serving as a Scrum Master in the organization! What is your next career move then? Is your part done once you receive CSM certification? Or you will think about adding more boosters to level-up your Scrum career? Go through this article to know more about numerous career options available for you today! Being a Scrum Master, you need to strengthen your Scrum knowledge on a regular basis. Typically, the very first move in the career of the Scrum Master includes serving one team, so that all the issues are faced by the team members can be resolved to deliver the end result very quickly.    A great Scrum Master always look for additional challenging roles. Often, the next logical step of the Scrum Masters is to work with multiple teams and at the scaled level concurrently. A Scrum Master, who manages to work under complex conditions can make an easy transition from good to great and this gives rise to the reality that- Success is often rewarded on accepting more challenges.  Level-up your Scrum Master skills to play various challenging roles in the organizations implementing a Scrum framework. Let’s take a look at the various certifications and requirements needed to earn those certifications after CSM certification. Given below is the list of various Scrum certifications that Certified ScrumMaster can take to upskill his/her career.Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM®)Certified Scrum Professional®-ScrumMaster (CSP-SM)Certified Team CoachSM (CTC)Certified Scrum Trainer® (CST)Certified Enterprise Coach℠ (CEC)Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO®)Certified Scrum Developer® (CSD®)ICP-ACC CertificationFoundational LevelPrerequisiteNext Career MoveCSPONoneA-CSPOCSDNoneCSPAdvanced LevelPrerequisiteNext Career MoveA-CSMActive CSMCSP-SMElevatedPrerequisiteNext Career MoveCSP-SMActive A-CSMCTC, CEC, CSTExpert/ProfessionalPrerequisiteNext Career MoveCTCActive CSP-SM, CSP-PO, or CSPCoaches the team members on ScrumCECActive CSP-SM, CSP-PO, or CSPHelp organizations to become an Agile organizationCSTActive CSP-SM, CSP-PO, or CSPTrains individuals on ScrumICP-ACCActive CSMMentors the team in Agile adoption1. Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM®)A-CSM certification is an immediate Scrum Master certification that can be earned just after the CSM certification. This certification will help an individual to facilitate smooth communication between the customers and the Stakeholders increasing engagement. Further, as an A-CSM certified individual, you can not only increase your Scrum implementation skills but showcase your value as a highly-skilled Agile professional to the potential employer.  Prerequisites to grab 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.What next after Advanced Certified ScrumMaster (A-CSM) certification?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®).  2. Certified Scrum Professional®-ScrumMaster (CSP-SM):Certified Scrum Professionals always aims to improve the ways of applying Agile and Scrum principles. They exhibit their experience, knowledge earned during the Scrum training. If you are looking to elevate your Scrum career to the next level, get ready to earn Certified Scrum Professional®-ScrumMaster (CSP®-SM) certification. After attaining  CSP certification, an individual will get the following benefits:A candidate will be able to attend CSP events with other leadersAn individual will get chances to earn more and recruited by the top-giant companiesPrerequisites to grab CSP-SM certificationAn individual should hold an active Advanced Certified ScrumMasterSM (A-CSMSM ) certification from any of the Scrum Alliance approved training center. Also, he/she should have at least 24 months of work experience as a Scrum Master. What next after CSP-SM certification?CSP-SM certification is a gateway towards achieving the Certified Scrum Trainer® (CST®), Certified Enterprise Coach℠ (CEC), or Certified Team Coach℠ (CTC) certifications.3. Certified Team CoachSM (CTC):The Certified Team Coach (CTC) is a guide level certification, usually works with the management, Scrum teams, and Stakeholders. As the name says, the CTC works at the team level. Organizations hire Certified Team Coach (CTC) to train, coach, mentor, remove obstacles, and lead the team to leverage value delivery, team collaboration, and continuous development across multiple teams. Prerequisites to grab CTC certificationAn 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 a minimum of 5 Agile eventsPractical experience of Scrum implementation and coaching experience in Agile and Scrum framework.What next after CTC certification?Certified Team Coaches (CTCs) can initiate coaching, mentoring, and training the professionals on Agile and Scrum processes once they earn CTC certification. Also, they can recommend up to 50 individuals yearly for whom they have given 25-hours of in-person training or small group training to achieve Certified ScrumMaster® and Certified Scrum Product Owner® certifications. In this way, a CTC certified can contribute to creating a healthy environment of the organizations by coaching the team members on Scrum.      4. Certified Scrum Trainer® (CST)Scrum Alliance offer only one trainer-centric certification in the form of Certified Scrum Trainer®  (CST) certification. This is the most sought-after certification and those who wish to transform the working way of the teams can be a part of this training. Prerequisites to grab CST certificationTo become a Certified Scrum Trainer (CST), you need to have:Detailed knowledge of the Scrum concepts, practices, and principlesAn active Certified Scrum Professional ScrumMaster™ (CSP-SM™) certification from Scrum AllianceHands-on experience in implementing the Scrum framework 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 professionals on the courses (e.g. if want to train on CSPO, an individual should hold an active CSPO certification.  What next after CST certification?As a CST, you can teach Scrum to the students who want to work in a Scrum environment. Scrum Alliance considers CST as an active member in the Scrum community who actively takes part in the events and user groups, blogging, and in online discussions.    5. Certified Enterprise Coach℠ (CEC):The Certified Enterprise Coach (CEC) exhibits their years of experience in Scrum transformations at an enterprise level. They also show their in-depth understanding of implementing Scrum practices and principles. The CECs are skilled at Scrum (both theoretically and practically) and guide organizations during their Agile transformation journey.Prerequisites to grab CEC certificationThe individuals 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.What next after CEC certification?Being a CEC certified, an individual can help organizations to become an Agile organization using the Scrum framework to transform the world of work. Also, they can recommend up to 50 individuals yearly for whom they have given 25-hours of in-person training or small group training to achieve Certified ScrumMaster® and Certified Scrum Product Owner® certifications. In this way, a CTC certified can contribute to creating a healthy environment of the organizations by coaching the team members on Scrum.   6. Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO®)The Product Owner (PO) creates the product vision, prioritize the product backlog, and help the team in delivering what customers intuitively looking for. The CSPO®  is the certification for the Product Owners that will help an individual in handling the business side of the project. Prerequisites to grab 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). What next after CSPO® certification?After taking CSPO certification, you can go for advanced-level certification of CSPO which is an Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner® (A-CSPO®) course from Scrum Alliance. 7. Certified Scrum Developer® (CSD®)The  CSD® certification proves that an individual has skills of building the software using Scrum as a part of the Scrum team. With CSD® , you can strengthen your technical skills in Agile software development. Prerequisites to grab CSD® certificationAny programmer (having coding knowledge) can attend CSD® course. To achieve this, an individual needs to undergo at least 5-days of the formal CSD training course by a Scrum Alliance Registered Education Provider (REP) and a Scrum Alliance Authorized Instructor. In addition to this, the CSD® certification offers the privilege to the CSM certified candidates. They can skip the first 2 days and directly join from the 3rd day of the technical training.What next after CSD® certification?After CSD® certification, an individual can level-up his/her skills with Certified Scrum Professional® for Developers (CSP- D) certification. The CSP certification help teams to constantly improve the ways of implementing Agile and Scrum practices and principles.   8. ICAgile Certified Professional in Agile Coaching (ICP-ACC) CertificationICP-ACC certification in Agile Coaching certification aims to achieve an Agile mindset. After this certification, an individual can easily be able to differentiate between the facilitation, mentoring, professional coaching and teaching and will get to learn the skills like team collaboration and conflict resolution to form a healthy organizational environment.Prerequisites to grab ICP-ACC certificationAn individual with CSM certification and 2-3 years of working experience as a Scrum Master, is eligible to achieve ICP-ACC certification training. What next after ICP ACC certification?Being a certified Agile Coach, you can play the role of the mentor to the Agile team by facilitating Agile practices and empowering teams to reach their goals. More specifically, an Agile Coach can is a guide to the team members who help the team in Agile adoption. Career Roles of a Scrum MasterThe Scrum Master is the heart of the Scrum process who plays a diverse set of roles in the team. Let's have a glimpse of the various roles that Scrum Master can play after the CSM certification:Agile CoachProduct OwnerManager SAFe Scrum MasterConcluding ThoughtsThe Scrum Master role should not be an end itself. There is always a scope of consistent improvement. So, for all the Scrum Masters, ‘What’s your next career path?’ Being a Scrum Master, try not to keep yourself restricted to limited skills. Try to advance your Scrum skills always by taking more advanced Scrum certifications.    So, are you ready to take the plunge with other advanced Scrum certifications after earning CSM certification?  
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The Career Path of a Certified Scrum Master: Found...

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Scrum Master Salary

How much does a Scrum Master earn? How prolific being a Scrum Master is? These are quite relatively simple and common questions but answering them is not that simple. Scrum Master was created around 1992 by Jeff Sutherland and his teams and is quite a new term. Nevertheless, it has not taken long to establish its importance to companies across the world. Scrum Master is currently one of the most promising jobs in the world.In this article, we will cover various aspects of a Scrum Master salary, such as how much a Scrum Master earns, what affects it and how, what the future prospects of a Scrum Master are in terms of salary structure and growth, and why Scrum Masters earn so much.How much does a Scrum Master Earn?According to Payscale, on an entry-level, Scrum Masters in India earn an average of Rs 723,565 per year, going up as high as Rs 1,486,991. In the USA, the average entry-level scrum master salary is $79,309 per year, the highest reaching a six-figure mark of $107,957. However, with more experience, the figures become interestingly better and here is how. Once again, Payscale search results indicate that an experienced Scrum Master in India earns an average of Rs 1,441,276 per annum with the maximum earnings going as high as Rs 2,078,905. Similar reports show that an experienced Scrum Master in the USA earns $103,566 per year on an average, earning as high as $134,203.Below mentioned are statistics from Payscale:Scrum Master Experience/CountryIndiaUSAEntry-Level Scrum MasterRs 723,565 p.a.(Rs 1,486,991 highest)$79,309 p.a.($107,957 highest)Experienced Scrum MasterRs 1,441,276 p.a.(Rs 2,078,905 highest)$103,566 p.a.($134,203 highest)The 2018 research by Glassdoor state that the Scrum Masters are one of the highest paid professionals in the USA, with the average salary being $98,239 and vacancies as high as 1,876. Cities such as New York, Atlanta, Charlotte, Columbus, and Richmond are considered to be the best and most prolific places for the Scrum Masters to work in.Evidently, the figures above are quite staggering and impressive, showing us how fruitful and career aspiring being a Scrum Master is.Here is a table of content for Average Scrum Master salary based on regions:Scrum Master Salary/RegionUSAINDIACANADAGBRAUSTRALIAAverage Scrum Master Salary/yearUS$93,2851,411,000CA$87,000£51,124A$110,000And here is the average salary based on various Scrum certifications:Scrum Master CertificationsSalary in US$/YearCertified Scrum Master (CSM)89,150Professional Scrum Master (PSM )91,000Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP)108,000Agile Scrum Master (ASM)115,000Scrum Master Certified (SMC)115,000SAFe Scrum Master114,546Salaries that Top Companies pay the Scrum MastersScrum has become so popular down the years that an incredible number of the major software companies adopt its methodology and ways of solving issues.According to the Scrum Guide, Scrum has been adopted by a vast number of software development companies around the world.Apart from being religiously used in manufacturing, operations, education, marketing and other fields, Scrum has been an important problem-solving tool for all the major software companies.Provided that you have the skills to deal with conflicts and are a proven facilitator, you have a great chance to join any of the top companies who are hiring skilled Scrum Masters like you.Glassdoor job search results in India reveal that the major companies hiring Scrum Masters are:Companies Hiring Scrum MastersAverage Salary in INR/yearCisco Systems2,200,000Capgemini1,487,461Amdocs1,279,001Tata Consultancy Services1,243,340Cognizant Technology Solutions1,242,530Wipro1,019,654Accenture1,000,975And in the USA, Scrum Masters are highly sought after by these major brands:Companies Hiring Scrum MastersAverage Salary in US$/yearTransUnion104,728Thomson Reuters104,130UnitedHealth Group97,904Ciber97,156IBM93,403J.P. Morgan91,786Capital One87,732AT&T85,977In the past few years, the pay structure for Scrum Masters has increased at a relatively quick pace. Although Scrum’s popularity status continues to get better, being a Scrum Master is undoubtedly a tough task because what a Scrum Master needs is more like servant leadership skills, and that is the primary asset a Scrum Master needs to possess. After all, it is all about following the Agile-Scrum tactics to finish projects on time along with keeping the quality of the end product intact.Factors affecting a Scrum Master’s salaryThere are many factors that determine how much a Scrum Master earns. Some of the key ones are:1. ExperienceThis is one of the most important criteria, if not the most important one. Like discussed in the previous section of this article, not only the salary of a Scrum Master increases with experience, the job role and position in an organisation gets better as well. Here are a few of the required skills/experience:In terms of landing a better Scrum master job with high pay package, it is recommended for a professional to have worked as a Scrum Master for a minimum of one year with a software development team, one that was diligently applying Scrum principles, practices, and theoryAdequate skills in and understanding of servant leadership, facilitation, situational awareness, conflict resolution, continual improvement, empowerment, and increasing transparency.2. The skills required by the job roleAnother important one. A Scrum Master’s role is not restricted to particular job designation. The more you know about the other Agile approaches in problem-solving, the better your job role and salary will be. By Agile approaches, we are talking about XP, Kanban, Crystal, FDD, etc3. Awareness of multiple Agile techniquesTo get better job opportunities, it is preferred to have knowledge of widely successful Agile techniques such as:User StoriesATDDTDDContinuous IntegrationContinuous testingPairingAutomated TestingAgile Games4. Applicable knowledge of the technologiesA particular organisation will pay you a better package for a Scrum Master if you have a sound grip over the type of technology they use to run their business. Why? It is simple. If you are aware of the system they work in, then they do not have to work on much in getting you in sync with the way they work in their organisation5. Knowledge of appropriate patterns and techniquesA progressive Scrum Master always thinks of using a variety of relevant well-documented patterns and techniques for filling in the intentional gaps left in the Scrum approach, such as Burndown technologies, various Retrospective formats, handling bugs and many more6. Location of the jobThe salary of a Scrum Master depends massively on where the job posting is. If the living standard of a particular city is high, so are the chances of getting a higher pay package. On the other hand, a city having a comparatively lower standard of living renders the Scrum Masters with a lesser salary range.Reason for Scrum Masters being so valuedWhy are the Scrum Masters paid so much? What do the Scrum Masters have to offer that makes them so vital to organisations? After all, in the past few years, Scrum methods have swiftly brought in a revolutionary change in project handling and problem-solving matters.We are living in times when software needs to be delivered on time after much feedback, changes, supervision. Collaboration with frequent updates and patches. To meet the delivery deadline, it is essential to keep the team members connected and in sync, preferably face-to-face. This is critical as the team working on the project should be well informed, collaborated and kept up to date throughout the project. Failure to execute any one of these steps would lead to a breakdown in software, the end result being loss of business, not to forget the reputation of the relevant organisation being tarnished.Nowadays, companies prefer the Agile workflow and are aware of the importance of a Scrum Master in an organisation. Converting a team into a productive one and self-organised by following the Agile practices without any fail, that’s what Scrum Masters do and that is what makes them special.
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Scrum Master Salary

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Difference between Scrum and SAFe®️

Scrum and Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe®️), both function under the Agile values and principles. Though there are very small differences between Scrum and SAFe®, it is very important to have a clear understanding of the same. Scrum is a framework which is based on the values and principles of Agile, whereas SAFe® is a framework which implements Scrum at an enterprise level. Let us have a look at the differences between Scrum and SAFe®. Quick Differences between Scrum and SAFe® :Sr. No.ScrumSAFe®️1.Deals will small, collocated, cross-functional teams.Deals with big, multi-geography teams.2.Scrum is adopted by the Agile Teams.Adopted by enterprises as a whole, not just a team. (extension of Scrum)3.The middle management plays no role.Program and Portfolio management are two important tiers of SAFe®️.4.Basic construct is the Scrum Team.Basic construct is the Agile Release Train. (ART)5.Scrum misses out various essential aspects.With SAFe®️, all possible features and aspects of an organisation can be managed.While Scrum is an Agile way to manage software development, SAFe®️ is an enterprise-level establishment method.The major difference between the two depends on the way they choose to handle their work. In simple words, Scrum is basically used to organise small teams, while SAFe®️ is used to organise the whole organization. Moreover, Scrum tends to miss many important aspects that SAFe®️ manages to contain.Scrum sounds simple in concepts but is hard to execute from the core.Scrum:Scrum is an iterative method of product development that breaks down a project into small segments, which are then completed by small cross-functional teams within a defined period of time.  It focuses on a regular rhythm of delivery and relies on cross-functional teams, some specific supporting roles and a set of ceremonies to complete the delivery of the project.To plan, organize, administer, and optimize a process, Scrum heavily depends on three roles:Product Owner: He is responsible to plan, organize, and make communication with the company.Scrum Master: It is the responsibility of a Scrum Master to look after the job during the sprints.Scrum Team: The main objective of the Scrum Team is the execution of the prescribed job for each sprint.SAFe®️:It stands for ‘Scalable Agile Framework’. It is an approach which consumes the whole enterprise and not just a team. SAFe®️ scales Scrum to make it work for bigger enterprises and has bigger teams working on the same product than what Scrum recommends. SAFe®️ has described three levels in an organisation, viz Portfolio, Program, and Team. This structure is widely accepted in large organizations as it has a tiered approach for delivery of its work. Unlike Scrum, it focuses on retrospect and releases planning as well, so that improvements can be made. The three important parts of SAFe® are:Lean Product Development Agile Software Development System ThinkingTo summarize, Agile is a mindset, a way of working; Scrum is a framework based on Agile values and principles, while SAFe®️ is a scaling framework that implements Scrum at an enterprise level. To Conclude:The major difference between Scrum and SAFe®️ agile methods lie in the way they take into practice. SAFe®️ has been developed in such a manner that it fills the gap that Scrum had left behind. SAFe®️ focuses on release planning and retrospect for improvement, which Scrum lacks.
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Difference between Scrum and SAFe®️

Scrum and Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe®️), both... Read More