Lawrence asked 5 years ago

Which is the best Agile Certification: PMI-ACP or Scrum Master?

Thanks Edward, I read your articles and go for PM PrepCast™ Exam Simulator which help me pass my PMP® today!

Now I’m thinking about taking Agile type exam, however, I don’t have Agile experience (I mean I don’t follow Agile methodology but I think the nature of my projects more or less similar to Agile ones, however, I’m not quite sure), I am not sure if Agile cert is useful for me, so for this situational case, would I need to go for PMI-ACP® or I just better simply go getting a SCRUM master cert? I have no knowledge of Agile area so its questionable if PMI-ACP® will be difficult for me, It seems SCRUM cert is easy to get..

Please give me some suggestion and nice to talk to you.

1 Answers
Best Answer
Edward Chung Staff answered 5 years ago

Hi Lawrence,
You are wondering whether Agile Certification would be useful for you and which Certification (PMI-ACP® or Scrum Master) to go for, right?
Agile is frequently used in software / IT development projects. Though many do not follow the methodology strictly, Agile is practised to a certain extent. Knowledge of Agile Methodologies would be very useful in this sense.
However, if your company or organization does not require you to have Agile Certification, Certification would do not much good for you (unless you would like to search for another job or have an edge for promotion). You can actually read the Agile Manifesto and several related books to understand what Agile is. What I find useful to obtain Agile Certification is the urgency it imposed on your learning (otherwise I would be easily distracted with other urgent matters). In this sense, I do encourage you to pursue Agile Certification indeed.
As for the question of which Agile Certification to go for, I do agree with you that as PMI-ACP® would require applicants to have substantiate experience in Agile project experience (not necessary management experience), you have to understand Agile methodologies a bit in order to determine whether your working experience are eligible. I mean PMI does not require the applicants to follow a certain Agile methodology in the strict sense as most Agile in practice are heavily tailored. You have to make sure your projects are carried out with the essence of Agile (short development cycle, fast and frequent delivery, responding to changes, etc.). If that’s you, you will then be qualified for the PMI-ACP® Certification.
PMI-ACP® Certification includes knowledge of Agile in a much broader sense than Scrum though Scrum Master Certification is more popular up-to-date. Aspirants would need to learn Scrum, Kanban, FDD, XD, etc. and tailoring of the methodologies are highly encouraged (maybe just like what you are currently practising at work). However, Scrum is a rather rigid methodology in which many of the practices are required to be followed. The PMI-ACP® Certification is a more prestige certification to achieve as both Agile knowledge and experience are required and aspirants need to pass the rather difficult exam (think the PMP® Exam). But for Scrum Master, you just have to attend a series of courses and complete the rather easy final exam to get certified (almost every student would get certified at the end of the course). That’s why I chose PMI-ACP® Certification over Scrum Master.
But again, it all depends on your career path. Some jobs would require the applicants to be Scrum Masters.
Wish you Agile Certification success!