Which Scrum certification providers have we tested?
There are several companies that issue Scrum certifications. No one can ignore the two best-known ones: scrum.org and Scrum Alliance. Both have been involved in the certification of Scrum Masters and Product Owners for many years and are thus considered established.
In addition, we compared PeopleCert as the third major testing organization. The international company not only successfully offers Scrum exams, but is also the rights holder for numerous best practice products used worldwide, including ITIL® and PRINCE2®. With over 5.5 million certificates issued worldwide, it boasts the greatest wealth of experience in the field of testing.
The basis of our comparison of Scrum certifications are the basic certifications Scrum Master I and Product Owner I.
- Certified numerous professional skills in areas such as IT, leadership and management since 2000.
- Offers exams in more than 200 countries and in 25 languages.
- The portfolio currently includes more than 700 exams.
- PeopleCert works with over 2,000 world-class training organizations around the world.
- The certification is valid for life.
- Interested parties have the choice of either self-learning Scrum or taking a training course.
- The exam is available in German.
- The examination is supervised, which is why the final certificate is particularly trustworthy.
- Reduced costs.
- Does not offer courses itself, but cooperates with training providers.
- All online exams at PeopleCert are supervised. This means: You will be accompanied by the exam supervisor via webcam and loudspeaker. So there is always someone there if you need help.
- Launched by Scrum co-founder Ken Schwaber. The co-founder of the Scrum Alliance left the organization in 2007 and founded his own private company, scrum.org, in 2009.
- Thus, the Professional Scrum Master (PSM) and Professional Product Owner (PSPO) emerged as competing certifications.
- Philosophy: Scrum.org stays close to the origins of Scrum and thus positions itself in software development.
- The certification is valid for life.
- Those interested do not need to have attended Scrum training prior to certification; passing the exam is enough.
- Reduced costs.
- Demanding exam: Here, participants have to answer the most questions – twice as many as with PeopleCert, for example.
- Exam only in English (or in other languages via Google translator).
- Scrum.org, the course materials are centrally defined. All trainers are required to teach certain key elements in their workshops. This ensures consistently high quality – no matter where in the world and by which trainer the course is conducted.
- Founded in 2001 as the first provider with Scrum certification program.
- Charitable non-profit organization: revenue from certifications is used to promote education, research and community.
- Philosophy: The Scrum Alliance considers Scrum not only in IT, but also as a cross-industry framework.
- Longest experience.
- Personal support through training or coaching.
- Possibility of exchange with the Scrum community.
- The certification exam is comparatively easy.
- Most expensive provider in comparison.
- The certification is only valid for two years.
- Financial and time expenditure for re-certification.
- The Certified Scrum Master (CSM) is indeed one of the best-known qualifications. However, Product Owners currently do not take any exam at all, which means that at least this certification loses its significance.
- The Scrum Alliance believes that agility must be experienced from interaction. Therefore, active participation in a training course or accompaniment by an accredited coach is always required for Scrum certification.
Scrum Master: Certifications in comparison
Product Owner: Certifications in comparison
Conclusion: PeopleCert is our favorite
All three organizations are trustworthy and offer globally recognized Scrum certifications.
If you want to learn the basics of Scrum on your own, you can take the exam at PeopleCert or scrum.org – no prior training is necessary. Nevertheless, such training is recommended, especially since the time required is manageable at two to three days.
Price-conscious people are also in good hands with PeopleCert and scrum.org: With both providers, the examination costs are comparatively low, and there are no further fees (for recertification, for example).
PeopleCert scores particularly well on the issue of credibility: While all three companies are established, only the audit at this largest provider is supervised. So if you want to enhance your resume with a Scrum Master certification, you will get the decisive added value as a certificate which you can prove that you have earned yourself. This will also make your qualification rock solid in the eyes of potential employers.
If, on the other hand, you place more value on a large community, interaction and exchange, then the Scrum Alliance is the right place for you. Their seminars may only be held by Certified Scrum Trainers who, among other things, must demonstrate several years of practical experience. However, you will pay a little more for it. In addition, the Certified Scrum Master certification is only valid for two years, after which it must be renewed. This is associated with additional costs and a greater time commitment, because the Scrum Education Points do not accumulate by themselves.
In the end, you have to decide for yourself which certification is the right one – depending on what is important to you. For us, for example, the close relationship to the community that the Scrum Alliance offers was not decisive. Instead, we were personally convinced by PeopleCert as an exam provider. As a result, our team members can now shine with Scrum certificates from Europe that are valid for life. In addition, PeopleCert’s certifications, with supervised and thus tamper-proof exams, meet all the expectations we have for a professional qualification.
For the best possible content preparation, we have also decided to attend a training course. If you would like to learn more, please contact us.