Certifications (both online and offline) are an excellent way for aspiring Scrum Masters and those already in the role to boost their career prospects.
Scrum Master trainings offer a whole host of benefits, including:
- Improving your knowledge of Scrum methodology
- Learning from experienced Scrum Masters
- Gaining an internationally-recognized qualification
- Boosting your employability prospects
- Enhancing your professional development prospects and more
Of course, it can be difficult to know where to start when it comes to choosing a Scrum Master training course or program.
That’s why, in this article, we’ll share with you our nine best Scrum Master certifications for 2022.
The Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) is a popular framework for scaling Agile across the enterprise. In fact, according to the State of Agile report from 2021, a staggering 37% of Agile organizations are using SAFe as their go-to scaling framework.
It is no surprise then that there is a whole host of SAFe trainings and certifications on offer for those wanting to upskill in this area.
If you’re looking for a SAFe training course to add to your certified Scrum Master resume, we recommend the following:
SAFe® Scrum Master (SSM)
Built for new or existing Scrum professionals, release train engineers, and project team leads, this certification will give you the knowledge and skills you need to lead a SAFe Agile transformation.
Things you’ll learn in the SAFe Scrum Master course include:
- How to apply Scrum in the context of SAFe
- The role of the Scrum Master in a SAFe enterprise
- How to facilitate Scrum events
- How to support relentless improvement and Program Iteration execution
- How to support DevOps implementation
- How to coach Agile teams for high performance
Before you attend this course, you will need to have some knowledge of Agile principles and concepts, as well as working knowledge of software (and hardware) development processes.
SAFe Advanced Scrum Master (SASM)
If you want to take your SAFe Scrum Master skills to the next level, then this is the course for you.
A follow-on from the basic SAFe Scrum Master certification, the Advanced SAFe Scrum Master course will give you an in-depth understanding of how to scale Agile practices across a large enterprise.
Topics covered include:
- Facilitation and coaching in a multi-team environment (in the context of SAFe)
- Addressing Agile and Scrum anti-patterns
- Building a high-performing Scrum team
- Enabling continuous flow with Kanban and Extreme Programming (XP)
- Supporting the implementation of DevOps, engineering practices, and Agile architecture
While you can attend this course if you have no prior experience with SAFe, it is recommended that you have at least completed the basic SAFe Scrum certification first.
SAFe Product Owner/Manager (POPM)
This course is great for those who are confident with their Scrum Master skills and want to learn more about becoming a certified Scrum product owner in a SAFe environment.
During the SAFe Product Owner/Product Manager course, you will cover topics such as:
- The role of the Scrum product owner and product manager in a SAFe enterprise
- Connecting the SAFe Agile principles to product management
- Managing development team backlogs
- Estimating and forecasting work together with Agile teams
- Delivering continuous value through program increments
- Breaking down Epics into Features and Features into Stories
Some experience with working in a SAFe environment is recommended but not essential for this certified Scrum Master training. By covering each learning objective of this course, you will become a professional Scrum product owner in no time.
ICAgile is short for ‘International Consortium for Agile’ and is a non-profit organization that designs and accredits Agile learning experiences.
ICAgile’s programs are suitable for those who want to learn more about Agile as a whole, rather than just one specific framework or approach – in other words, unlike SAFe, they are framework-neutral.
While ICAgile may not have Scrum Master-specific programs, they do have one entire learning track dedicated to becoming an Agile Coach. Agile coaching is the logical next step for Scrum Masters who want to progress in their career, and this track will give you all the skills and knowledge you need to make that transition.
Here are the three courses that make up the ICAgile Agile team Coaching track:
Agile fundamentals (ICP)
Agile fundamentals offer, as the course name suggests, a great introduction to the basics of Agile. You’ll come away from this course with a good understanding of what Agile is, its principles, and how it can be applied in various ways.
This Agile certification will give you a solid foundation to build on as you progress in your Agile coaching career.
Agile Team Facilitation (ICP-ATF)
Facilitation is one of the key skills of a Scrum Master and an Agile coach, and this course will give you plenty of opportunities to practice and hone your facilitation skills.
You’ll learn about adopting the facilitation mindset, how to assess your ability to serve the team, create a collaborative space, clarify team decision-making authority, and much more. Agile Team Facilitation is an excellent first step towards becoming an Agile coach.
Agile Coaching (ICP-ACC)
In order to expand on your facilitation skills and become a fully-fledged Agile coach, you need to take the ICAgile Agile Coaching course.
It will give you an in-depth understanding of emotional intelligence, being fully present as a coach, listening, asking powerful questions, identifying and exploring issues, the difference between coaching and mentoring, and so much more.
After you obtain your ICP-ACC certification, you’ll be well on your way to becoming an expert in Agile coaching.
Disciplined Agile Scrum Master (DASM)
The Project Management Institute is a non-profit membership organization for project management professionals. They offer a wide variety of courses and certifications, including the Disciplined Agile Scrum Master (DASM) certification.
The DASM certification is suitable for anyone who is new to Scrum. It will give you a comprehensive introduction to the Scrum methods and teach you how to apply them in your organization. Other Agile methods, such as Kanban and SAFe, are also covered in this course.
If you want to learn more about Scrum and how it can be used effectively in your organization, the Disciplined Agile Scrum Master certification is a great place to start. It emphasizes finding your way of working within Scrum rather than blindly following rules and guidelines.
Certified Scrum Master (CSM)
Certified ScrumMaster is a certification offered by the Scrum Alliance, one of the largest and most well-known community-driven organizations for Agile professionals.
The CSM certification is meant for Scrum Masters, project managers, software engineers, business analysts, and anyone else who is interested in learning more about Scrum. The certification focuses on the fundamental concepts and processes of Scrum, as well as the role of the Scrum Master.
It will provide you with hands-on skills that you can apply to your work immediately.
Professional Scrum Master (PSM)
The Professional Scrum Master certification is offered by Scrum.org, another well-known community for Agile professionals.
The PSM certification is organized into three levels according to the difficulty of the exam: PSM I, PSM II, and PSM III. The first level is suitable for anyone who is new to Scrum; the second level is for those who have more advanced knowledge of Scrum and some experience working with it, while the third level is meant for experienced Scrum Masters who want to deepen their knowledge.
The certification focuses on topics such as servant leadership, self-organization, continuous improvement, and the Scrum framework.
Which certification is right for you?
The programs we’ve listed above represent just a fraction of the Scrum Master training and courses available. In our opinion, these are the best, but ultimately the decision of which one to choose depends on your needs and goals.
If you’re new to Scrum and want to learn the basics, we recommend starting with the SAFe Scrum Master course. If you’re interested in becoming an Agile coach, the Agile Coaching track by ICAgile is a great choice. And if you want to deepen your knowledge of Scrum, the Professional Scrum Master (PSM) program is an excellent option.
Remember to do extensive research before enrolling in any course or certification program so that you can be sure it’s the right fit for you. Whichever Scrum Master training you choose, take advantage of all the resources and opportunities it offers so that you can get the most out of it.
The good news is that in this increasingly Agile world, there are many options for Scrum Master training and courses for a variety of Scrum roles. The bad news is that with so many choices, it can be difficult to decide which one is right for you.
In this article, we’ve listed the top 9 Scrum Master trainings and courses for 2022, based on our research and experience. We hope this overview will help you narrow down your choices and find the perfect program.
Before you commit to any Scrum course, make sure to do your research and choose a program that will fit your needs and goals. Don’t forget to take into account the different requirements in terms of experience so that you can make the most of your learning.
Finally, if you’d like to learn more about becoming a certified Scrum professional, don’t hesitate to contact us. We would love to help you on your journey to becoming a top-notch Scrum Master.