Considering Agile Certification
Choosing an Agile certification presents a number of complications, including the fact that there are different approaches and frameworks to consider and the fact that most are still evolving and changing. To help get your search started, here is an Excel-based roundup of Agile certifications.
Over the past few years, Agile has been gaining significant ground. Many organizations that looked the other way, waiting for it to pass, have come to realize that ignoring Agile is no longer an option. Before diving in, however, they want to validate that their project teams, contractors or potential hires are educated in how to practice a specific Agile methodology, and that often means they want them certified.
With Agile, certification brings a number of complications, starting with the fact that it is still evolving and changing as a standard. While training is available for all of the certifications included here, in some cases it isn't required. Another complication is that there are a number of approaches/frameworks in the mix. Knowing which one to adopt can be daunting even for the highly experienced.
Exams are a heavily debated topic in Agile certification. You will see that some certifications require that the individual pass an exam; others do not. Typically, the argument against exams is that they don't provide an accurate measure of expertise and can have a negative effect in that people study just to pass the test, not to absorb the principles. Likewise, some programs require re-certification every few years. This typically comes with a requirement for ongoing training from time to time. Other programs take the view that if your university does not require you to revalidate your degree every few years, why should a certification program.
Lastly, when considering the options below, it is important to understand why you (or your group) are pursuing the certification. In some cases, simply having the certification may be the end goal, especially if it is required for a contract. In other cases, you may be pursuing certification because you truly believe that it will transform the staff and how they approach their lives and their work. If the later option is what motivates your team, you may want to explore which of these programs posts a list of specific objectives and topics for the courses they offer.
Regardless of your motivations, it makes sense to do your research before you go down the certificationpath. Hyperlinks are provided for each of the options listed below. Take the time to learn more about them before making a final decision, as most of these certifications will have a definite impact on the career paths of the folks who pursue certification.