The world of Agile continues to move on at pace, so it’s time for our latest review of the current job trends in the Agile market. Here are 5 things that we are seeing that could affect how you think about getting a job over the next 6 to 12 months.
- More Women, Greater Diversity
The Agile Alliance’s Women in Agile initiative and others like it are driving up the number of women working in Agile environments. Initiatives like these are helping women stay in their roles longer, manage the transition back to work following maternity leave and they also support women in mentoring the next generation of female Agile leaders.
It’s well documented that diverse teams encourage knowledge and idea sharing, driving success across projects. The trend towards supporting women’s careers is a positive for everyone in the workplace.
- The Rise of Certification
There’s a lot of choices out there for an Agile practitioner who wants to get a certification. Scrum Master credentials (or nothing at all) used to be the popular choices but today employers recognize a range of certifications. And they value them. There is far greater awareness now about what the certifications are testing and what that means for the hiring organization.
Certifications like PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP)® are aimed at project managers working in Agile environments. PMI-ACP is PMI’s fastest growing certification. Programs like this are becoming more popular and – if we dare use the term – more mainstream. That’s evidenced by the latest PMI guidance that was released recently: A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK Guide)® – Version 6 includes more about Agile project management than ever before.
If you don’t yet have a certification, think about getting one to showcase your experience and to demonstrate your skills to employers.
- Blending and Tailoring for the Perfect Fit
Employers today are looking for people who demonstrate the ability to flex their tools and approaches to fit the project.
Candidates who can show that they can work within an agile context and that they understand the challenges of a traditional project environment are in demand. With more and more projects being run in an environment where the project management approach is pick-and-mix (in a good way!) people who can be flexible will have the edge.
A further trend we’re seeing is the move towards scaling Agile for complex projects and enterprise-wide initiatives. Frameworks like Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) and Scrum of Scrums are gaining ground. If you have experience in scaling Agile across a business then that’s definitely something to highlight on your resume.
- Software Tools are Changing
There are lots of software tools aimed at making the lives of Agile team members easier. From online Kanban boards to trackers and burndown charts, everything is moving online.
That’s no bad thing – and not totally relevant to candidates, you might think. However, it’s worth calling out on your resume that you have worked with Agile software tools. If it’s Atlassian or VersionOne then it’s probably worth name dropping. The software market is so fast moving that if you’ve used other tools there is little value in mentioning them by name on your resume unless you know that’s going to be relevant to the company you are applying to. Otherwise, simply highlight that you’ve used online Agile team tools and are confident with this style of working.
- Agile in the Gig Economy
Can you work in the gig economy as an Agile professional? We think you can. Intuit identified 5 different groups of workers operating in what they call the ‘on-demand’ economy.
- The Business Builders – This group are leaving corporate worlds to run their own businesses hiring others. Many Agile small business consultancies could fit into this group. You could go to work for a small company and get involved in all areas of the business as a critical team member.
- The Career Freelancers – These people are taking contract positions. They aren’t building a business that will hire others, but they are happy with job flexibility. Project work lends itself to contract roles well and offers a lot of choice for Agile practitioners looking to work flexibly in the contract market.
- The Side Giggers – This group work in corporate jobs and do extra work on the side. For example, Agile professionals who teach or who use vacation days from their main job to use their expertise to run workshops. You won’t necessarily find these positions advertised, but if you have deep subject matter expertise in a particular area you could find your skills in demand.
- The Passionistas – Agilists who fall into this group would be those looking for work they love with a degree of flexibility. Again, project work has high flexibility (in the right company) so it’s perfect for people who are looking to pick and choose contracts that appeal to them.
- The Substituters – Finally, this group is working in the gig economy on a temporary basis, picking up short-term contracts and freelance work while looking to get back into full-time employment. If you are looking for a contract position to fill the gap while also considering move back into full-time work, you’d fit into this group.
Flexible working, contracts and short-term assignments: these are all possible in Agile roles, and are all on the rise.
These are some of the trends we are seeing in the Agile marketplace today. It’s a growing area, and there is much demand for skilled and entry-level positions. Whether you’re looking to shift out of waterfall-style project management into your first Agile role, or looking for a senior Agile practitioner role that adequately reflects your experience and skills, there are options out there for you.
We’d go as far as saying that there has never been a better time to invest in Agile as a career choice!
Ready to get that new job? Triumph Strategic Consulting can be your recruitment partner to make sure your next move is into a job that feels like a perfect fit. Give us a call today!