Agile Project Management Certification

Agile and Software Development Specialist & Expert Certifications from Learning Tree

Certified Specialist in Agile Project Management

As a Certified Specialist in Agile Project Management, you have the knowledge and skills to drive progress by delivering projects in less time, with less risk and more business value. You apply Agile principles and the Scrum framework to plan, manage and execute Agile software development projects.

Specialist Certification – Two Courses Plus Passing Associated Exams:

1. Agile Project Management with Scrum (Course 918 – 3 Days)

About This Course: In this course, you learn how to apply Agile project management principles and the Scrum framework to create software-intensive products. Through immersive workshop activities you acquire the practical knowledge and skills to plan, manage and execute Agile software development projects.

You Will Learn How To:

  • Deliver business-valued software to your customer in less time
  • Develop higher-quality software products at lower cost
  • Mitigate uncertainty and risk by applying Agile values and principles
  • Apply the Scrum framework to meet business needs
  • Focus on continuous process improvement through embedded learning in the workplace

Active Learning Workshop:

  • Identifying candidates for the Product Owner role
  • Envisioning a product
  • Estimating feature size using Planning Poker
  • Simulating a six-Sprint project from start to finish
  • Interpreting quantitative data to accurately track progress
  • Dealing with geographically distributed development

2. Accelerating Agile Development for Scrum Teams (Course 1812 – 3 Days)

About This Course: Scrum and Agile software development is often embraced by organizations not fully adapted for it. In this Scrum-focused Agile training course, you learn how to use Scrum and apply Agile development methodology to drive progress by resolving impediments and creating high-performing, self-managed teams.

You Will Learn How To:

  • Resolve organizational issues that impede your Agile teams’ development
  • Build high-performing teams for more valuable software delivery
  • Avoid “story card hell” through effective backlog management
  • Minimize waste using Lean principles
  • Apply Scrum to portfolio management and multiple team projects

Active Learning Workshop:

  • Identifying bad “smells” to better focus a Scrum Master’s Team improvement initiatives
  • Simulating a requirements workshop for ATDD
  • Prioritizing the resolution of impediments
  • Mapping external dependencies to facilitate self-managing Teams
  • Forming assessments of your organization’s agility


Scrum and Agile software development is often embraced by organizations not fully adapted for it. In this Scrum-focused Agile training course, you learn how to use Scrum and apply Agile development methodology to drive progress by resolving impediments and creating high-performing, self-managed teams.


Agile Project Management Software

Top Agile Project Management Software

With Agile on the rise, Agile project management software has become more competitive than ever. The best software addresses three pain points common for Agile teams:

  • Agile reporting and metrics: Time tracking and projection, easy-to-understand progress reports for stakeholders, quality assurance, and percentage complete
  • Communication: Communicate updates with local and distributed teams, and share task lists, feedback, and assignments
  • Project assessment: Identify and remedy project obstacles, evaluate performance, and appraise financials

With these needed features in mind, I dove into the world of some of the top Agile project management software and narrowed down the list to these seven great options. They are listed below alphabetically.


ActiveCollab is a great, affordable solution for small businesses. Because it’s so easy to use, project managers don’t need to stress about teaching their team how to use this celebrated software. Its powerful document management, email-based communication features, priority and task control, and budgeting features have made it particularly attractive for project managers trying to manage multiple projects.

Pros: Intuitive, outstanding support, iOS apps, can bill the client straight through the app, and the ability to limit which user sees what.

Cons: Timeline and column views for tasks instead of Gantt or Kanban boards.

Cost: Self-hosted at $499; $49/month for up to 15 team members.

Agile Bench

Heralded as “the easiest way to manage Agile projects,” Agile Bench is both simple enough for users to pick up and use, but also flexible enough to be customized for each team’s integration needs with their open API. Agile Bench offers powerful reporting tools that can pinpoint systemic problems across multiple projects. Additionally, Agile Bench has a host of third-party integrations, including GitHub, BitBucket, Pivotal Tracker, and spreadsheet importing and exporting.

Pros: Excellent recorded instant messaging system, fully-fleshed out task management system, and a gorgeous and in-depth reporting interface.

Cons: A little pricey, no mobile app, no backlog, and no way to set user permissions.

Price: Scales up from $50 a month for eight team members, three projects, and 10GB of file storage.

Agilo for Scrum

If you have a project that needs a powerful communication tool, Agilo for Scrum is one of your better bets. Agilo for Scrum automatically updates stakeholders on the project’s progress. It also offers tools to make sure that all team members are aware of the latest updates; every change made by a user is automatically shown to their teammates by the “Incoming Activity” panel. Additionally, Agilo offers a “Sprint Report” and burn down charts for project managers looking to data mine their progress.

Pros: A great communication system, responsive support team (24-hour response time), and well-priced.

Cons: No ability to host more than one project, no mobile app, and some have noted that the system is difficult to learn.

Cost: €10 month for unlimited users, one team, one project, or €20 for unlimited users, unlimited teams, and 1 project.

Atlassian Jira + Agile

As one of the trusted brands in Agile software, Atlassian Jira + Agile is quick to deliver a powerful project management tool that can fit most offices. Teams can use this product as either a self-hosted or cloud-based solution. Atlassian Jira + Agile offers Scrum, Kanban, and integrates with JIRA, Confluence, and other Atlassian products. Project managers can make customized workflows, visualize QA issues, and keep in constant communication with “HipChat,” and the software offers a system called “Release Hub” that makes sure your product is really “complete” when it’s sent out to the final customer.

Pros: Mobile app, strong backlog management, and lots of add-ons so project managers can customize the software to their team’s needs.

Cons: There are so many features that Atlassian Jira + Agile has a strong learning curve for new users, and switching between apps can be a pain.

Cost: Starts at $20/mo for 10 users, scales up based on users.

Pivotal Tracker

Pivotal Labs, a consultancy on software development, created Pivotal Tracker to specifically assist web and mobile developers. Pivotal Tracker supports multiple projects, burn down charts, messaging between users, project-based tasks, and user stories. Pivotal Tracker is relatively easy to use (after you get beyond theprogram’s jargon), has a fantastic iOS app, and offers a nice set of feedback tools, so QA is always at the forefront of the project.

Pros: Great specifically for Agile software development, lots of integrations (including Jira, Zendesk, and Bugzilla), supports cross-functional teams, and free for individuals and public projects.

Cons: Support can be slow for non-paying users and the system is difficult to customize.

Cost: Free for three users, 2GB of storage, and two private projects; also free for public projects, non-profits, and academic institutions. Starts at $15/month for five collaborators and goes up to $300/month for 50 collaborators.

Telerik TeamPulse

Telerik TeamPulse is an enterprise-level Agile software that’s so packed with features that it can offer the customization and tools for even the most complicated projects. Sure, TeamPulse offers Scrum, Kanban, unique user stories, and a backlog that can look at multiple projects—all important features for an Agile system—but where TeamPulse really distinguishes itself is in its communication with stakeholders. Clients have their own portal where they can sign in and give feedback, then vote on which feedback is most important. Project managers can then take that feedback and quickly turn them into tasks for new iterations. Packed with powerful reporting features and analytic tools to help PMs make the best decision for their software team, TeamPulse is by far one of the most impressive Agile tools out there.

Pros: Great for collaboration with stakeholders, lots of Agile tools, and a great feedback system between end-user and Telerik.

Cons: Pricey, difficult to learn, no mobile app, and specific to software developers.

Cost: $1,499 for five users—$249 per additional user.


VersionOne is the eighth most popular project management software in the world—and it’s well deserved, considering its intuitive user interface, ability to customize for any style of Agile your team uses (DSDM? Scrum? XP? You name it), and visual, easy-to-understand reporting features. Users can pick up VersionOne and quickly learn how to drag-and-drop on the Kanban boards, place comments, and keep up with their teammates’ and personal tasks right from the dashboard. VersionOne also syncs with a host of ALM development tools, including Jira, GIT, HP Quality Center, and Microsoft Visual Studio, so you won’t have to leave your current workspaces behind.

Pros: Easy to use, great integration systems, and good for remote teams.

Cons: Overwhelming number of features and the free version is very limited.

Cost: Free for one project and one team; scales up to $175 a month and beyond based on users and features.

What is Agile Project Management

Agile Project Management focuses on continuous improvement, scope flexibility, team input, and delivering essential quality products. Agile project management methodologies include scrum, extreme programming (XP), and lean, among others. These methodologies all adhere to the Agile Manifesto and the 12 Agile Principles, which focus on people, communications, the product, and flexibility.

Agile project management is a value-driven approach that allows Project Managers to deliver high-priority, high-quality work–and look like rock stars to their stakeholders. It’s nothing like the plodding, costly and error-prone approach to project management, which has delivered inconsistent results for years.
Software projects change constantly. When customers are expected to finalize requirements before they can test-drive the prototypes, overhead and long delays often cripple the project. Agile Project Management is about embracing change, even late in the development stage. It’s about delivering the features with the greatest business value first, and having the real-time information to tightly manage cost, time and scope.

Agile Project Management reduces complexity by breaking down the many months long cycle of building requirements for the whole project, building the entire product and then testing to find hundreds of product flaws. Instead, small usable segments of the software product are specified, developed and tested in manageable, two to four week cycles.


Manifesto for Agile Software Developers

The Agile Software Development Manifesto© is an intentionally streamlined expression of the core values of agile project management. Use this manifesto as a guide to implement agile methodologies in your projects.

“We are uncovering better ways of developing software by doing it and helping others do it. Through this work, we have come to value:

  • Individuals and interactions over processes and tools
  • Working software over comprehensive documentation
  • Customer collaboration over contract negotiation
  • Responding to change over following a plan

That is, while there is value in the items on the right, we value the items on the left more.”

©Agile Manifesto Copyright 2001: Kent Beck, Mike Beedle, Arie van Bennekum, Alistair Cockburn, Ward Cunningham, Martin Fowler, James Grenning, Jim Highsmith, Andrew Hunt, Ron Jeffries, Jon Kern, Brian Marick, Robert C. Martin, Steve Mellor, Ken Schwaber, Jeff Sutherland, Dave Thomas.

This declaration may be freely copied in any form, but only in its entirety through this notice.


The 12 Agile Principles

The 12 Agile Principles are a set of guiding concepts that support project teams in implementing agile projects. Use these concepts to implement agile methodologies in your projects.

  1. Our highest priority is to satisfy the customer through early and continuous delivery of valuable software.
  2. Welcome changing requirements, even late in development. Agile processes harness change for the customer’s competitive advantage.
  3. Deliver working software frequently, from a couple of weeks to a couple of months, with a preference to the shorter timescale.
  4. Business people and developers must work together daily throughout the project.
  5. Build projects around motivated individuals. Give them the environment and support they need, and trust them to get the job done.
  6. The most efficient and effective method of conveying information to and within a development team is face-to-face conversation.
  7. Working software is the primary measure of progress.
  8. Agile processes promote sustainable development. The sponsors, developers, and users should be able to maintain a constant pace indefinitely.
  9. Continuous attention to technical excellence and good design enhances agility.
  10. Simplicity — the art of maximizing the amount of work not done — is essential.
  11. The best architectures, requirements, and designs emerge from self-organizing teams.
  12. At regular intervals, the team reflects on how to become more effective, then tunes and adjusts its behavior accordingly.


Agile Project Management Roles

It takes a cooperative team of employees to complete a project. Agile project teams are made up of many people and include the following five roles:

  • Development team: The group of people who do the work of creating a product. Programmers, testers, designers, writers, and anyone else who has a hands-on role in product development is a member of the development team.
  • Product owner: The person responsible for bridging the gap between the customer, business stakeholders, and the development team. The product owner is an expert on the product and the customer’s needs and priorities. The product owner works with the development team daily to help clarify requirements. The product owner is sometimes called a customer representative.
  • Scrum master: The person responsible for supporting the development team, clearing organizational roadblocks, and keeping the agile process consistent. A scrum master is sometimes called a project facilitator.
  • Stakeholders: Anyone with an interest in the project. Stakeholders are not ultimately responsible for the product, but they provide input and are affected by the project’s outcome. The group of stakeholders is diverse and can include people from different departments, or even different companies.
  • Agile mentor: Someone who has experience implementing agile projects and can share that experience with a project team. The agile mentor can provide valuable feedback and advice to new project teams and to project teams that want to perform at a higher level.


Agile Project Management Artifacts

Project progress needs to be measurable. Agile project teams often use six main artifacts, or deliverables, to develop products and track progress, as listed here:

  • Product vision statement: An elevator pitch, or a quick summary, to communicate how your product supports the company’s or organization’s strategies. The vision statement must articulate the goals for the product.
  • Product backlog: The full list of what is in the scope for your project, ordered by priority. Once you have your first requirement, you have a product backlog.
  • Product roadmap: The product roadmap is a high-level view of the product requirements, with a loose time frame for when you will develop those requirements.
  • Release plan: A high-level timetable for the release of working software.
  • Sprint backlog: The goal, user stories, and tasks associated with the current sprint.
  • Increment: The working product functionality at the end of each sprint.


Agile Project Management Events

Most projects have stages. Agile projects include seven events for product development. These events are meetings and stages and are described in the following list:

  • Project planning: The initial planning for your project. Project planning includes creating a product vision statement and a product roadmap, and can take place in as little time as one day.
  • Release planning: Planning the next set of product features to release and identifying an imminent product launch date around which the team can mobilize. On agile projects, you plan one release at a time.
  • Sprint: A short cycle of development, in which the team creates potentially shippable product functionality. Sprints, sometimes called iterations, typically last between one and four weeks. Sprints can last as little as one day, but should not be longer than four weeks. Sprints should remain the same length throughout the entire projects.
  • Sprint planning: A meeting at the beginning of each sprint where the scrum team commits to a sprint goal. They also identify the requirements that support this goal and will be part of the sprint, and the individual tasks it will take to complete each requirement.
  • Daily scrum: A 15-minute meeting held each day in a sprint, where development team members state what they completed the day before, what they will complete on the current day, and whether they have any roadblocks.
  • Sprint review: A meeting at the end of each sprint, introduced by the product owner, where the development team demonstrates the working product functionality it completed during the sprint.
  • Sprint retrospective: A meeting at the end of each sprint where the scrum team discusses what went well, what could change, and how to make any changes.


Agile Project Management Organizations, Certifications, and Resources

There is a big agile project management world out there. Here are a few of the useful links to members of the agile practitioner community:

  • Agile Alliance: The Agile Alliance is the original global agile community, with a mission to help advance agile principles and practices, regardless of methodology.
  • Scrum Alliance: The Scrum Alliance is a nonprofit professional membership organization that promotes understanding and usage of scrum. The Scrum Alliance offers a number of professional certifications:
    • Certified Scrum Master (CSM)
    • Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO)
    • Certified Scrum Developer (CSD)
    • Certified Scrum Professional (CSP)
    • Certified Scrum Coach (CSC)
    • Certified Scrum Trainer (CST)
  • Ron Jeffries, one of the originators of the extreme programming (XP) development approach, provides resources and services in support of XP’s advancement on the site.
  • Lean Essays: Lean Essays is a blog from Mary and Tom Poppendieck, thought leaders in the use of lean concepts within the software development space.
  • PMI Agile Community: The Project Management Institute (PMI) is the largest nonprofit project management membership association in the world. The agile section of PMI’s website provides access to papers, books, and seminars about agile project management. PMI supports an agile community of practice and a certification, the PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP).
  • Platinum Edge: Since 2001, my team at Platinum Edge has been helping companies successfully take their project management practices to a higher level. We provide training classes worldwide and also develop transition strategies and coaching for organizations moving to agile project management. Visit the training section of our site to find an upcoming Certified Scrum Master, Certified Scrum Product Owner, PMI-ACP preparation, or agile overview class near you.


Learn more about the following:

What is Agile Methodology?
Agile Software Development
Agile Software Development With Scrum
Agile Testing Methodology