Here’s an infographic that shows the agile certification landscape as it stands today (August, 2014). There are three key observations emerge from the data:
An Agile Practitioner’s First Certification Will Be From the Scrum Alliance
Within the field of entry-level programs, it’s no surprise that the Certified ScrumMaster program from the Scrum Alliance is the most popular. However, what is surprising is that the Scrum Alliance’s Product Owner program clocks in at #2.
PMI Attracts the Most Practitioners
Although the Scrum Alliance has attracted the most agile beginners, the PMI-ACP is the most popular next step for practitioners. To some degree, that makes sense. The Scrum Alliance is focused on promoting one agile technique: Scrum, but the PMI-ACP formally promotes over 100 agile techniques, including Scrum. The Scaled Agile Academy certifications promote a set of agile techniques that sit on top of Scrum, and therefore has grown to be very popular over the last 2 years. Exact numbers are not available on their website, but so far Scaled Agile Academy seems to be little threat to PMI, who themselves plan to have their 6,000th PMI-ACP this month.
Scrum.org is the Fastest Growing Expert Community
In the span of 4 years, Scrum.org has ammassed 123 trainers, whereas the Scrum Alliance has had a full 10 years to acquire their 200+ experts. The Scrum Alliance is aware of its need to attract more experts, and has recently revised its expert certification programs to fix what was a restrictively difficult application process. Meanwhile, newcomers ICAgile and Scaled Agile Academy are formalizing their expert programs, and will merit more attention in the coming year.