Agile frameworks have been around for some time but only relatively recently have industry leaders began backing instructor-led agile training certificates as a means of improving organizations’ overall environment. Many see that curriculums such as Scaled Agile help ignite the collaborative mindset surrounding agile methods.
These types of courses can instill a collaborative approach among development teams that have a certification as their end goal. In these situations, employees are also more interested in training. On an individual level, however, a SAFe certification can boost an employee’s career, and help them master the intricacies of a Lean-Agile transformation on an enterprise level.
By using SAFe, a Lean-Agile enterprise will be able to use the Agile methodology and implement it into their existing projects. It will also allow large teams to work more effectively. SAFe is one of the few frameworks that combines lean and system thinking with Agile development practices. That said, scaling agile practices to an enterprise-level will require a certain degree of skill, knowledge, and experience in SAFe.
Why is SAFe Important for Organizations?
The Scaled Agile Framework is a complete methodology for large-scale Agile teams to seamlessly and effectively carry out an Agile transformation. After a successful implementation, businesses can experience benefits such as:
- 10 – 50% better employee engagement
- 25 – 75% increased productivity
- 20 – 50% improvements in quality
- 30 – 75% faster time to market
Many are under the impression that SAFe is similar to Scrum in that both aim to scale Agile. However, Scrum is used for a Lean-Agile transformation in a small organization, on small teams, and small projects. SAFe, on the other hand, is a way of scaling Agile structures like Scrum or Kanban that work in larger organizations. Because of its supporting structures, SAFe provides the necessary connecting pathways for a successful Agile transformation on a larger scale.
How Does a Scaled Agile Framework Certification Help?
Corporations of all sizes can benefit from certified Scaled Agile experts as a way of increasing ROI. Below are some of the main reasons why companies should consider getting a SAFe certification.
Handling Agile Adoption Challenges
Some of the most significant issues in adopting Agile occur when there are multiple teams of varying disciples. Agile practices used on teams with interdependencies do not scale well when adopted across the enterprise level. The skills earned with SAFe training and subsequent certification will help align multiple teams achieve collaboration between departments, improve product development flow, and deliver customer value while still being in line with its business goals and overarching vision and strategy.
Fewer Problems During the SAFe Implementation
A lot of larger organizations are already using Agile within teams and business departments. Yet, when these teams and departments are brought together, various issues and obstacles start to arise. These issues will get out of hand If they are not handled early on and teams will fall into anti-patterns. With proper SAFe training and certification, your teams will be aligned on a common approach to Agile practices.
Teams will be able to adopt a consistent approach that will enhance product quality, architecture, and engineering practices. Specific certifications such as Leading SAFe, for example, will allow the entire company to use the Agile Release Train (ART) to plan, execute, and deliver value that brings every Agile team together.
Understanding the New Roles and Responsibilities
Roles and responsibilities will need to be created or changed when scaling agile at the enterprise level. To avoid any issues or challenges across the organization, the SAFe courses will provide the knowledge and management skills to help team members adopt the new Lean-Agile mindset and best practices. Managers, executives, and product owners will be better positioned to understand the new changes and roles by training and becoming SAFe certified.
Maintaining consistency across different departments can become difficult without the proper training. SAFe certification is about learning the skills to establish and maintain a consistent strategy across the entire organization. SAFe training equips people with the skills to communicate the company strategy at both the program and portfolio levels. They will also have the know-how to strategically align multiple departments.
Below are the different SAFe certification options that can benefit your organization
SAFe Certification Options
Certified SAFe professionals are globally recognized for their ability to guide a Lean-Agile transformation for a business. The Scaled Agile Professional Certification Program provides specialists with reliable certifications based on exam development practices and data-driven methodologies. It also offers an excellent certification program and supports the SAFe learning journey through globally consistent role-based training and ongoing support.
Certified SAFe Agile Product Manager
A certified SAFe Agile Product Manager combines the Lean-Agile Principles, Values, and Design Thinking to create highly desirable, viable, and sustainable products and solutions. Agile Product Managers are fully aware of how continuous exploration fuels innovations and helps define the vision, strategy, and roadmap to access new markets. They also know how to accelerate the product life cycle. Before taking this certification exam, you will also need to take the Agile Product Management course.
Certified SAFe Lean Portfolio Manager
The Certified Lean Portfolio Manager (LPM) understands how strategy and investment funding is established, and how to apply Lean governance and Agile portfolio operations. Lean portfolio managers also know how to design a Lean Portfolio Management function implementation plan. Those looking to become LPM certified will need to take the Lean Portfolio Management course.
Certified SAFe Architect
To become a Certified SAFe Architect, applicants should take the SAFe for Architects course. After the necessary training and certification exam, SAFe Architects become effective leaders in charge of delivering an Agile Architecture that enables the creation of business value. The core competencies of a SAFe Architect include leading and supporting multiple Agile Release Trains, extending the principles that drive continuous flow to large systems-to-systems. They also help enable the flow of value, as well as develop and maintain the Agile Architecture.
Certified SAFe Agile Software Engineer
The SAFe certified Agile Software Engineer (ASE) applies Test-First principles to create better alignment between tests and requirements. The ASE also creates a shared understanding with BDD, applies Lean-Agile principles to optimize value flow, and communicates with Agile modeling. A certified ASE will need the Agile Software Engineering SAFe course.
Certified SAFe Government Practitioner
A Certified Government Practitioner (SGP) is a change agent. SGPs use SAFe practices and principles to release value through multiple Agile Release Trains. They lead the Lean-Agile transformation of a program within a governmental agency. Course required: SAFe for Government
Certified SAFe DevOps Practitioner
To become a certified SAFe DevOps Practitioner (SDP), applicants must take the SAFe DevOps course. After their training and certification exam, the SDP is in charge of providing a complete flow of value through a Continuous Delivery Pipeline. This pipeline begins at the idea stage and extends all the way to the operational solution. Their main areas of responsibility include Continuous Exploration, Integration, Deployment, Testing, Security, and building a culture that is based on shared responsibility.
Certified SAFe Program Consultant
The SAFe Program Consultant (SPC) is a Scaled Agile Framework change specialist who leads all levels of the company through its Lean-Agile transformation. The SPC does this through training, coaching, facilitating, and monitoring. Required course: Implementing SAFe
Certified SAFe Release Train Engineer
The Release Train Engineer (RTE) is a SAFe program servant leader and coaching professional responsible for driving end-to-end delivery of value in the Lean-Agile enterprise. Required course to become RTE certified: SAFe Release Train Engineer
Certified SAFe Product Owner / Product Manager
A certified SAFe Product Owner/Product Manager works with development organizations and customers to prioritize requirements. They apply the Lean-Agile Mindset, as well as SAFe principles and practices to identify customer needs and prioritize work that delivers value to the enterprise. They also write Epics, Features, Stories, and Capabilities. Required course: SAFe Product Owner / Product Manager
Certified SAFe Scrum Master
A Certified SAFe Scrum Master (SSM) is responsible for integrating Scrum practices into the organization. They use Scrum and Kanban to facilitate team events, coach Agile teams, and support program execution. Professionals will require a SAFe Scrum Master course.
Certified SAFe Advanced Scrum Master
The Certified Advanced Scrum Master (SASM) is a professional responsible for improving team effectiveness by facilitating and streamlining cross-team communications, interactions, and improvement. They identify and solve team anti-patterns, improve value flow through Kanban and engineering practices, and support Program-level execution. They also use problem-solving and advanced coaching techniques to drive relentless improvement. Required course: SAFe Advanced Scrum Master
Certified SAFe Practitioner
By taking part in the SAFe for Teams training course, the SAFe Practitioner (SP) is a team member responsible for using Extreme Programming (XP), Scrum, and Kanban in a SAFe environment. The key areas of responsibility include:
- Planning Program Increments (PI) and Iterations.
- Developing incrementally with built-in quality.
- Breaking requirements into stories.
- Producing value at a team and program level.
Certified SAFe Agilist
A certified SAFe Agilist (SA) is an enterprise-level leadership professional. They are in charge of applying SAFe to scale Lean-Agile development and Lean-Agile mindset and principles. The Agilist also plans and executes PIs, releases value through multiple Agile Release Trains, and builds an Agile portfolio with Lean-Agile budgeting. Required course to become a certified SAFe Agilist: Leading SAFe
To fully understand scrum methodologies and Agile approaches so you can start practicing Agile the right way, your team needs to go through SAFe training. Reach out to the i4 Group and explore our Agile training services to find out more about Agile certifications. We are a transformation consulting and corporate training firm with decades of experience in Agile practice. We can seamlessly guide your staff through Agile education and corporate training.