Top 10 Agile Certifications for 2021 - Invensis Learning

The pandemic has forced many companies to adopt new technologies, manage change, and make decisions more quickly than ever before. To survive in this volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous world, leading companies are embracing agile in a significant way. They are prioritizing to invest in professionals who possess the knowledge needed to spearhead the Agile approach head-on. Upskilling has always been important, but the economic and job uncertainty of 2020 has further hammered that point home. Obtaining a relevant Agile certification is a great way to start or accelerate your career in 2021.

But, how do you know which Agile certifications are the most desirable – and therefore likely to command higher earning potential and marketability? Here are the top 10 Agile certifications that you should look out for in 2021. This list is subjective to change. If you think we have missed any certification, please do let us know in the comment section.

PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP) from PMI

To begin my list, I choose PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP) from the Project Management Institute, because it is one of the fastest-growing and the most pursued Agile certifications. In fact, it has become a golden standard for agile competency, as seen by the different organizations. There are multiple reasons why people aim to be recognized as PMI-ACP certified professionals. Prominent ones being high demand, professional growth, marketability, and a broader array of agile competencies. And, of course, hefty paychecks.

Average Base Salary

According to Payscale, a PMI-ACP certified professional’s average salary ranges from $62,200 – $162,000.

Who can take up this certification?

The PMI-ACP certification is ideal for professionals who want to validate their conceptual and practical understanding of Agile principles and techniques. Project & Program Managers, Project Team Members, Agile Coaches, and others with extensive experience in multiple Agile methodologies are the prime candidates.

PMI-ACP Certification - Invensis Learning

Agile Project Management (AgilePM) from APMG

With approximately 95 percent of the organizations practicing agile in 2020, Agile has become the industry standard for project management. AgilePM certification accredited by APMG is one of the most sought-after and the world’s leading agile certification for Agile Project Management. It is a globally recognized certification that validates an employee’s ability to understand and embody Agile principles in project management. According to APMG, since its commencement in 2010, around 150,000 individuals have attempted the AgilePM certification exam worldwide.

Average Base Salary

According to PayScale, a Certified Agile Project Manager’s average salary in the United States is 100,000 US Dollars. 

Who can take up this certification?

The credential is aimed at professionals such as, Project Managers, Agile team members who wish to become Agile Project managers. Including AgilePM certification in your CV will add a sought-after qualification to your profile that could help increase your earning potential. 

AgilePM Foundation Certification Training - Invensis Learning

Certified Scrum Master (CSM) from Scrum Alliance

Next up on the top 10 Agile certifications list, we have Certified Scrum Master (CSM) certification from Scrum Alliance.

As you guys might already know, Scrum is an increasingly popular Agile framework. CSM certification validates your ability to learn to think in terms of Scrum values and help your Scrum team perform at the optimum level. Currently, the Scrum Alliance has more than 1 million certifications issued, which attests to the popularity of CSM Certification globally. In addition to a strong understanding of Scrum Framework’s fundamentals, holding a globally-recognized Scrum Master certification such as CSM will impress your employers.

Average Base Salary

Highly skilled Scrum Masters are in huge demand across the world. In fact, Glassdoor continues to include Scrum Master in their list of best jobs in the United States 2020, – ranking at Number 29 with a median salary of USD 100,000. 

Who can take up this certification?

This certification is designed to prepare you to become a Scrum Master. It is suitable for professionals in roles such as Product Owner, Iteration Manager, Program Managers, and other managerial positions. 

Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO) from Scrum Alliance

The second most-pursued Scrum certification of 2021 from Scrum Alliance is Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO). It is a widely recognized certification program in the field of program management and product ownership domain. The Product Owner role is a new concept for most organizations, yet the demand for a Product Owner continues to grow daily. According to the report created by the World Economic Forum, the product owner is one of the most emerging jobs in the product development domain.

Average Base Salary

The market for Product Owners is quite competitive in terms of salary as well. Actually, the demand is higher than the availability of qualified professionals. According to PayScale, in the United States, a Certified Scrum Product Owner’s average salary is around $105,122. 

Who can take up this certification?

This certification is designed for Project Team Members, Project Managers, Business Analysts, and others, who wish to deliver a high-quality product, lead Scrum groups, effectively coordinate with stakeholders, and maximize the ROI. Certified Scrum Product Owner - Invensis Learning

Professional Scrum Master – I (PSM I) from Scrum.org

Scrum.org is also another very well-known and respected organization among industry professionals. PSM I is a popular Agile Project Management certification in the market from Scrum.org. Achieving this certification validates an individual’s in-depth knowledge of the Scrum framework and its application in a day-to-day work environment. According to Scrum.org, as of December 1, 2020, there are 478,000 PSM certified professionals. PSM assessments from Scurm.org help you advance from a novice to an experienced user during a certain number of years.

Average Base Salary

According to the 2019 Scrum Master Trends Report by Scrum.org, 44% of participants with PSM certification earn more than 100,000 US dollars. Only 18% of non-certified counterparts were in this bracket.

Who can take up this certification?

Generally, project managers, IT Managers, QA team, Testing Professionals will want to take this certification exam to demonstrate their expertise. However, that’s not to say you have to be in that role. 

Professional Scrum Product Owner (PSPO) from Scrum.org

Professional Scrum Product Owner certification offered by Scrum.org is another most significant and widely recognized Scrum certifications globally. Driven by changes in how software is developed, the growing importance of data, and the evolution of product development practices, product owners’ scope is expanding. Therefore, getting a relevant certification will help you stay ahead of others in this competitive race, in this case, a Professional Scrum Product Owner Certification (PSPO). Post this certification, you will become a global Scrum professional with increased opportunities across different industry sectors, especially product management. 

Average Base Salary

According to Glassdoor, the average salary for a Scrum Product Owner is 115,355 US dollars, which eclipses almost every other product owner credential.

Who can take up this certification?

Ideal candidates for this certification exam include those responsible for applying Scrum frameworks to solve complex problems regarding product ownership and deliver valuable products. 

Professional Scrum Product Owner - Invensis Learning
 

SAFe Agile Certification from Scaled Agile 

Scaled Agile Framework, or SAFe, has become a framework of choice for enterprises that wish to thrive in the digital age with business agility. Scaled Agile, Inc. is the certifying body of the Scaled Agile Framework and leading provider of SAFe courses. It provides a variety of role-based courses and certifications that can uplift your career to the next level. One of the most popular ones being SAFe Agilist Certification. It will prepare you for the role of Certified SAFe Agilist (SA), a SAFe enterprise leadership professional who is part of a Lean-Agile transformation. 

Why should you consider getting a SAFe certification?

There are multiple reasons why SAFe certifications are worth your time and money.

  • Certified SAFe professionals are globally recognized
  • With 70 percent of US Fortune 100 companies implementing SAFe, demand for SAFe certified professionals is growing at an exponential rate
  • SAFe certifications open up a new door of opportunities for career development and growth
  • Also, if you have the right skill-set, the organizations are willing to pay generously. According to PayScale, the average salary of a Scaled Agile Certified SAFe Agilist is 104,523 US Dollars

Who can take up this certification?

Professionals who wish to be a part of a Lean-Agile transformation should opt for Leading SAFe. This includes Program or Project Manager, Scrum Master, Team Leads, Agile Coach, Portfolio manager, and many others.

SAFe Scrum Master Certification Training - Invensis Learning

Agile Scrum Foundation from EXIN

Agile Scrum Foundation is one of the globally recognized Agile & Scrum credentials. It is accredited, managed, and administered by EXIN, which has certified millions of professionals in the digital domain. It validates the knowledge of Agile principles and Scrum practices at the foundational level – everything a novice agile practitioner needs to be a part of cross-functional teams to produce efficient deliverables at every iteration.

Average Base Salary

The market for Agile Practitioners is quite competitive in terms of salary. For example, according to PayScale, the average salary of an Agile Coach in the United States is 120,000 US dollars. EXIN also offers advanced Scrum role-based certifications such as Agile Scrum Master and Agile Scrum Product Owner, which are the next two certifications in our top 10 agile certifications list. 

Who can take up this certification?

Unlike other courses that focus on either Agile principles or Scrum framework, Agile Scrum Foundation certification focuses on both of them combined. Professionals working in domains such as project management, software development, IT service management, and business management should go for the Agile Scrum Foundation exam.

Agile Scrum Foundation Certification - Invensis Learning

Agile Scrum Master from EXIN

The Agile Scrum Master certification by EXIN is one of the highly recommended advanced level Scrum role-based certification. It focuses on adopting Agile or Scrum in the workplace and taking on a Scrum Master’s role. With a lot of professionals applying for Scrum Master roles, the competition has become fierce. Pursuing Agile Scrum Master certification is an ideal way to move forward in the digital age, as it helps professionals develop an Agile mindset and a scrum skill set.

Average Base Salary

Scrum Masters are in huge demand all over the world. According to Glassdoor, the average salary for a Scrum Master is 115,000 US dollars, which eclipses almost every other scrum master credential.

Who can take up this certification?

Ideal candidates for this certification are professionals who work in domains such as project management, software development, IT service management, and business management. Scrum is quickly becoming a framework of choice for companies and organizations interested in achieving Agile transformation. 

 
Agile Scrum Master Certification - Invensis Learning

Agile Scrum Product Owner from EXIN

One of the highly recommended advanced level Scrum role-based certifications by EXIN is Agile Scrum Product Owner certification. It focuses on leading Agile Scrum projects and maximizing the value of the product created by the development team. It tests candidates’ skills to lead Agile teams and increase the value of the product. 

Like I keep mentioning, Agile adoption has become mainstream. To work in this complex world, organizations require great teams directed by an inspirational product owner with a clear vision. Agile Scrum Product Owner demonstrates your core knowledge in the domain and willingness to learn and invest in yourself. You will increase your credibility by acquiring ASPO certification from EXIN. 

Average Base Salary

Agile Product Owners are quite competitive in terms of salary as well. According to Glassdoor, the average salary for a Scrum Product Owner is 115,355 US dollars in New York City. 

Who can take up this certification?

ASPO is ideal for individuals for Project Team Members, Project Managers, Product Owners, Business Analysts, and others who work in domains such as project management, software development, IT service management, and business management. 

So, that brings us to the end of the top 10 agile certifications list. Apart from these, there are also other Agile certifications that you can consider opting for based on your interest. Let’s quickly take a look at them.

Other Agile Certifications

We already talked about SAFe Agilist certification earlier. Scaled Agile, Inc. is the certifying body of the Scaled Agile Framework and leading provider of SAFe courses. It provides a variety of role-based courses and certifications that can uplift your career to the next level. A few of them are:

Successful agile transformations need transformational leaders with a knack for addressing complex problems. This drives the need for Agile leadership certifications. 

  • The PAL Certification from Scrum.org will act as a significant differentiator for enterprises looking to drive Agile transformation
  • The Certified Agile Leadership (CAL) by Scrum Alliance is a unique two-part education and practice-based program to develop agile leadership competence and maturity. Scrum Alliance offers three foundation CAL certification courses: CAL Essentials (CAL-E), CAL for Teams (CAL-T), and CAL for Organizations (CAL-O).
  • You need to take two or more prerequisite foundational courses to progress to the next level: CAL II.

Conclusion

With this, we have reached the end of the ‘Top 10 Agile Certification for 2021’ blog. And I hope you found an agile certification that interests you on this top 10 agile certification list. If not, please do let us know in the comment section below. We are looking forward to your recommendations. Enroll now and take the next step in your pursuit to master Agile.

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