19 Agile certifications you can earn to grow your career

Updated 31 May 2023

Agile project management helps managers visualise and divide a project into different parts or sprints to increase efficiency and avoid or mitigate errors early. It's a flexible approach that applies to multiple industries, such as software development, which increases its demand. Learning about certifications in Agile management can help you identify programmes to help develop your skills and get a new job to grow your career. In this article, we provide a list of 19 Agile certifications to help advance your project management skills and career.

19 Agile certifications to help develop your career

Below is a list of Agile certifications to help determine what they offer and identify which ones to pursue.

Please note that none of the companies, institutions or organisations mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.

1. Certified Agile Leadership (CAL)

The CAL programme from the Scrum Alliance offers two certifications, including CAL and CAL II. CAL training programmes teach students the principles and how to apply and integrate team and leadership agility. It features three foundation courses, including CAL for Teams (CAL-T), CAL Essentials (CAL-E) and CAL for Organisations (CAL-O). To pursue the CAL II certification, students require at least two foundational certifications in CAL. The CAL II programme has three categories, including Agile Organisation, Agile Approaches and Leadership in an Agile Context.

Related: A guide to improving leadership skills (With examples)

2. Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO)

Product owners, project managers or product managers determine the products the team creates and aligns the projects to ensure regular delivery of high-value products. The CSPO programme covers the principles of Scrum and how to deploy it efficiently and increase career opportunities in different industries. It also features the skills and tools a product owner may use when implementing Agile management.

Related: 5 valuable Scrum master certifications (With relevant jobs)

3. SAFe Product Owner/Product Manager (SAFe POPM)

The SAFe POPM programme teaches product owners or product manager candidates how to plan and execute project initiatives and integrate lean Agile principles into their values as product owners or product managers. It also covers how to maintain customer focus and how to convert ideas into features and features into product stories. In the certification exam, candidates answer 45 questions within a 90-minute session and can retake the tests after at least 30 days.

4. Professional Scrum Master (PSM)

PSM certification includes the Scrum framework and how to apply it. There are three levels of PSM certifications, including PSM I, PSM II and PSM III. Candidates can get a PSM I certification without doing the course work if they have substantial knowledge of Scrum principles and understand their application.

Related: What is a Scrum Master? (With duties and responsibilities)

5. International Consortium for Agile (ICAgile)-Agile Certified Coach (ICP-ACC)

ICP-ACC certification has three levels, including Professional, Expert and Master Coach. It prepares candidates for careers as iteration managers, Agile coaches and Scrum masters. The training programme's goals include helping candidates conduct coaching conversations, providing mentoring skills and teaching leadership engagement. To get the certifications, students complete 16 hours of training over three days without examination.

6. ICAgile-Agile Team Facilitation (ICP-ATF)

ICP-ATF certification shows that candidates can coach and facilitate Agile management in a team environment. It makes candidates eligible for roles like Agile product managers, product owners, Scrum masters, Agile coaches and business analysts. Member organisations of ICAgile determine how to assess trainees before giving them the certification. They may use exams, group exercises and in-class activities to evaluate the students.

Related: Professional qualifications: definition, benefits, examples

7. Agile Project Management (AgilePM)

AgilePM certification from APMG International shows a candidate understands various Agile practices, knows support and facilitation mechanisms in Agile projects and uses the Agile approach when prioritising project requirements. Candidates require the AgilePM Foundation Certificate to pursue this certification. The certification exam features four questions with 20 points each. Candidates require at least 50% to pass and have two and a half hours to complete it. It's an open-book examination, so you can use the official AgilePM manual.

8. ICAgile Certified Professional (ICP)

ICP certification from ICAgile suits individuals who are new to Agile concepts. Its training programme provides knowledge in various Agile frameworks, such as Scrum, Kanban and XP. This Agile certification also acts as a foundational certification for other ICAgile courses. Candidates can begin the certification programme without experience, which takes at least 14 hours to complete.

Related: 5 project charts for project management and their uses

9. Certified ScrumMaster (CSM)

The CSM course helps students understand the team environment, including events, accountabilities and artefacts and shows them how to lead their team in applying Scrum principles. People in different industries can pursue the course, including Scrum masters, business analysts, project managers, software engineers, human resources representatives, data scientists, marketers and new Scrum team members. The course features at least 14 hours of study and includes a 60-minute examination with a pass mark of 37 out of 50 questions.

Related: Business organisational structures and how they help you

10. Advanced Certified ScrumMaster (A-CSM)

A-CSM certification is available to people who complete the CSM course and gain at least one year of experience as a Scrum master in the last five years. Candidates gain more insight into Scrum's practical use and learn how to coach Scrum team numbers or product owners. Other skills and knowledge they develop in the programme include facilitation, team dynamics and interaction.

11. SAFe Agilist

The SAFe Agilist course teaches the foundations of SAFe, covers its principles and outlines practices and tools to lead and transform Agile teams. Candidates also learn how to improve product quality, boost productivity, decrease time to market, increase employee engagement and maintain a customer-centric mindset. The course includes a one-year membership in the safe community, provides training materials and features a SAFe Agilist certification exam.

12. Agile Programme Management (AgilePgM)

AgilePgM is a foundation certification for risk managers, programme managers, procurement professionals, project managers, project management office managers and senior business people in leading various programmes. It teaches them how to structure, plan, manage, control and communicate in an Agile programme. To get this Agile certification, students complete a 40-minute exam with 50 questions and a 50% pass mark.

Related: What does a project manager do? (With key skills for role)

13. Certified Scrum Professional (CSP)

CSP certification is from Scrum Alliance, which provides multiple other certifications. Candidates require at least 24 months of experience as a Scrum master in the last five years and an active A-CSM certification. It's appropriate for Scrum team managers, team members and people transitioning to Scrum.

14. ICAgile-Agile Project and Delivery Management (ICP-APM)

ICP-APM certification helps delivery managers, project managers and product managers validate their Agile and lean product delivery skills. The course also helps them create incremental value delivery, facilitate rapid learning and feedback and identify and manage project blockers and dependencies. Trainees may also require foundational knowledge of Agile values and principles and project management experience to complete the course successfully.

15. Professional Scrum Product Owner (PSPO)

PSPO certification shows that product owners understand the value drivers for products and know how to use Agile and Scrum practices to maximise the value. It also teaches them to develop self-managing teams and create business strategies for the products. The certification exam features a 60 minutes time limit, includes 80 questions and requires candidates to score at least 85%.

16. ICAgile-Agile Product Ownership (ICP-APO)

ICP-APO certification validates a product owner's knowledge and skills to deliver services, products and software using Agile practices. For example, they learn adaptive planning and prioritisation, cover how to assess value and understand how to balance the needs of business customers and teams. Product owners, business analysts and product managers get the agile certification after taking the class and completing a post-class survey.

17. Certified Scrum Developer (CSD)

CSD certification shows your skills and knowledge in Agile software development. It exposes trainees to tools and techniques for building software iteratively and incrementally. Trainees take at least five days to complete the CSD training, but they can take at least three days if they're a CSM or a Scrum Alliance member.

18. ICAgile Certified Professional in Business Agility Foundations (ICP-BAF)

ICP-BAF certification demonstrates a candidate's understanding of business agility dimension values and principles. Its training programme helps them develop a growth mindset, formulate plans for applying agility and use various tools and techniques to increase business agility. It's similar to ICP certification, and those who are ICP certified may benefit from ICP-BAF certification.

19. Project Management Institute (PMI)-Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP)

PMI-ACP certification features a versatile programme that teaches trainees multiple Agile approaches such as Lean, Kanban, Scrum and extreme programming. Trainees complete 120 questions in the exam and get a three-hour time limit. To get the certification, trainees require eight months of Agile project experience, 12 months of general project experience, 21 hours of Agile training and a secondary degree.

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