Scrum luminaries freely grant the necessity for good developer practices, and the Scrum Alliance is thinking about developer certification. Some important people in the community are involved, and so am I. Read on ...

Schedule changed, see new post.

Ken Schwaber, co-creator of Scrum, says publicly that perhaps only 25% of Scrum teams get the full benefit of Scrum. Jeff Sutherland, the other co-creator, says publicly that all the high-performance Scrum teams he has seen used XP-style practices.

In those two sentences, we see a problem, and part of a solution. Ken Schwaber has the Scrum Alliance working on a possible “Certified Scrum Developer” program. One thread of work on that involves Chet Hendrickson, Brian Marick, Bob Martin, and Jim Shore. I’m in there as well. Recently Elisabeth Hendrickson has been helping also.

You might be thinking that certification is evil and/or stupid, and therefore why are these people involved in such an evil and stupid thing. For me, my thought is that if certification is to happen, I’d like to try to guide it to be as good and as smart as possible.

The people listed above have corresponded and there was a meeting in Chicago, where we listed seven areas where a development team member needs high skills in order for a team to really rock. We put all that information on a Google group, Agile Developer Skills.

We’re inviting you to join that group. New members will be able to read and post to the general list, and if you want to create and edit documents you’ll need to be approved for that. If you want to contribute–not quite the same as rant–please sign up and help us.

In addition, Chet and I are planning a small no-cost workshop in Ann Arbor, October 12-15, at the Ann Arbor Courtyard by Marriott at 3205 Boardwalk. We’ll be test-flying our presentation and material on the subject, and we expect lots of discussion with attendees on the whole subject of whether and how to certify members of the development team.

We can accommodate around 12 people, so if you would like to attend, and can make a firm commitment, please write an email to Chet’s training address,  We’ll have light continental breakfast and snacks, we’ll be on our own for lunch, and travel and accommodations are up to you. We have arranged for discounted rooms: we’ll let you know when you sign up, and here are the links. (Please don’t sign up for a room until you know whether we are able to accomodate you in the sessions. King Room.  Double Room.)

We’d like to get people who are passionate about excellence, and interested in what, if anything, should be done about certification.

Comments welcome.