For a couple of years now, the list of the most sought-after professions in software development and IT in general has included the Scrum Master.
Regardless of whether you have already made a splash as a Scrum Master or if you are just entering the game, having a thought-out resume is an absolute must. It’s your best shot at landing more interviews and job opportunities. It demonstrates you are capable of getting the job done.
In this article, we will give you some tips on what a good Scrum Master resume should include and we even provide a few Scrum Master resume samples you can use as a starting point.
Covering the Basics
A resume tells your professional story and helps you earn trust. It sets you apart from a legion of other Scrum Masters out there.
It goes without saying you need to showcase your main skills, experience, and achievements. What is more, they should be aligned with the requirements listed in the job ad and the expectations of a recruiter.
Speaking of which, please remember that most resumes get a few seconds of attention, especially when we are talking about large organizations and professional recruiters.
In other words, there’s not much room for error.
But, others have been in the same position you are. There is a way to do it right and fit basically everything on one page.
First off, to get noticed in a sea of other resumes, make sure yours is picture-perfect. The layout should be simple and not too flashy. You can emulate the clean aesthetics of a burn-down chart— it’s rather easy on the eyes.
Have just enough whitespace, keep the headings attention-arresting, and fonts professional-looking.
Furthermore, establish what sections are to be included. Here, Scrum Master resumes differ from what most people are used to. For instance, since there’s no bachelor’s degree in Scrum, the education segment is not that important. Unless you had academic Agile or Scrum involvement, be very brief.
There are some other areas to prioritize. These are: work history, skills, and experience. So, let’s dive in further.
The Meat of the Resume
As for work history, things are rather straightforward.
Most people use a reverse-chronological format. This is because it shows your latest and hopefully most relevant accomplishments. Therefore, list several bullet points that describe your most recent positions.
Avoid being too vague and general. Details are what really sell your resume. Ideally, you‘ve led cross-functional teams and brought tangible benefits. These can relate to revenue boost, money savings, shorter time to market, improved team velocity, etc. Focus on facts and figures and eliminate any fluff. What employers want to see are measurable, impact-oriented proofs of your competence. Big and empty words tend to fall on deaf ears.
Moving on, skills are certainly the real meat of your resume. The list of must-haves is long and encompasses things like automation, project management, potentially Kanban and its melding with Scrum, forecasting, Agile coaching, conflict resolution, software knowledge, and Idea Systems.
It’s a good idea to cover soft and hard skills. Scrum Masters swim well in interpersonal waters but also know how to employ cutting-edge tools. See to it that your resume indicates both of these things.
Furthermore, consider adding a resume summary with a pair of key skills to spark interest right away. You can also underline your passion in a resume objective to make up for the lack of hands-on experience.
Some other sections to ponder are conferences, publications, and additional activities that pertain to the role of Scrum Master.
Of course, if you have had experience with traditional project management, you should still include this. This can make a difference if you are applying with companies that are attempting to move from traditional project management into Agile. Someone who understands what they are dealing with will have an upper hand over someone who understands only agile.
The crown jewels of your career are professional certification and Scrum Master Training programs. These witness to a certain level of competence and they have become all but required for Scrum Master positions, unless you are applying with some young, smaller companies.
Putting the Best Face Forward
Those who lack any credentials of that sort shouldn’t despair.
You’re fine as long as you’re applying for entry-level Scrum Master jobs. It also helps a great deal if you have the experience, which easily trumps certification. For example, you can point out to general industry experience and list project you took part in.
Mention skills you displayed while working in Agile environments and self-organizing teams. Affirm your passion to grow together with Agile teams and companies. Just steer away from statements like “I’m new to Scrum, but eager to learn”. They usually do more harm than good. The same goes for overused buzzwords.
Instead, explain what makes you unique and the right fit for the job. Tell what you are proudest of and back it up with concrete numbers. Give recruiters a glimpse of your personality as well.
We know this may all seem like a lot to take in at once, but don’t fret.
Finally, bear in mind that you usually need to send the resume along with a cover letter. Apply the same rules we described above to writing it. Again, concrete and quantifiable information is your best ally. One difference would be the fact that letters are a bit bulkier, which is to say you can go more in-depth.
Oh, and remember to save and send the resume in PDF. It’s preferable to Word format, which can get “lost in translation”.
Scrum Master Resume Samples
We have created a few Scrum Master resume examples that you can use as inspiration for yours. Make sure to click for larger versions that you can also download if you wish.