Agile Product Manager and Product Owner Background
Over the past decade the trend of engineering teams using Agile development methodologies has continued to increase.
In our recent Challenges in Product Management Survey and report, 71.3% of companies are using either Agile or a combination of Agile and other methodologies to develop products.
Many teams use Scrum, Lean, XP or Kanban techniques in order to take advantage of the time-to-market and other benefits that they provide over traditional waterfall or phase-gate techniques, and you as a Product Manager must understand how your team has decided to work.
If you are in Product Management, particularly if you are working on software products, your effectiveness on the job and your career advancement will be highly-dependent on your ability to work effectively with a team using Agile development methods.
In the same Product Management survey we also found that of those companies doing Agile, 70% indicated that the Product Manager was also the Product Owner (check out our article comparing the Product Manager and Product Owner role).
What this means is that if you want to be a successful Product Manager in these environments you need to know Product Management really well AND you need to understand Agile and Product Ownership well. But the fact is that less than 2% of Product Managers have ever been trained in Product Management, and even fewer have also been trained in best practices around Agile, including the most popular form, which is Scrum.
Why the Certification?
To address this gap and help Product Managers succeed in an increasingly-ever-Agile world, the Association of International Product Management and Marketing, the world’s leading Product Management certification organization, has created the Agile Certified Product Manager and Product Owner Credential.
In conjunction with strategic partners, such as the 280 Group, the credential was developed to show that a Product Manager has a deep and full understanding of how to be a true Product Leader.
The certification covers strategic Product Management and leadership concepts and also includes all of the material that would typically be learned in a Product Owner certification.
The result is a certification credential that shows that you know how to be effective at your job and can help to open new doors when you look for your next promotion and career move.
Here’s a chart that shows a comparison between what’s covered in the certification compared to other “Product Owner” only certifications.
How to Earn the Certification
To earn the certification you can take our Agile Excellence for Product Managers and Product Owners two day course and then you have up to one year to study the materials and take the certification exam online. The course is also available to be delivered privately to entire Product Management teams.
NOTE: if you are a Product Manager who doesn’t also have Product Owner responsibilities there is also a self-study course that you can take to earn a similar credential, Agile Certified Product Manager.