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CSM® vs CSPO® – What’s the difference and which one’s right for you? 

In Education
April 22, 2021
CSM® vs CSPO® - What's the difference and which one's right for you? 

Scrum is one of the most powerful and popular frameworks used to implement agile processes in iterative projects such as software development. If your organization has just started transitioning to Scrum, you will be dealing with many new concepts and roles that can be confusing. Two such roles are – Product Owner and Scrum Master. 

In this article, we will be discussing the differences between two of the most popular scrum certifications. 


CSPO® or the Certified Scrum Product Owner is the certification for individuals interested in the business aspects of a project. As a Product Owner, you will be responsible for handling the ‘behind-the-scenes’ of the product development. Offered by the Scrum Alliance for the Scrum Product Owner role, it is a great way for you to exercise your leadership skills. The Product Owner is the one who is responsible for the work the Scrum team is responsible for completing. It is their job to motivate the team so that they can achieve the vision of the project and achieve their goal. 

Product Owner is one of the most important roles in a Scrum team from a business point of view. It is a challenging role that involves making crucial business decisions regarding the products. According to payscale, the average annual salary of a Scrum Master in the US is $105,399. In India, the national average annual salary of a Scrum Master is ₹14,23,458. 


CSM® or the Certified Scrum Master is a certification covering all the fundamental aspects of the framework. Offered by Scrum Alliance for the role of a Scrum Master, it has been designed to provide you with a strong base in Scrum. The job of a Scrum Master is to ensure that all the team members are following the theories, practices, and rules of Scrum. It is their responsibility to make sure that the team has everything it needs for completing its work. This includes organizing meetings, removing roadblocks, etc.  

Scrum Master is among the most highly sought-after roles in the market today. The impact of the principles of Agile is so high that companies have been hiring Scrum specialists left and right, and CSM® is the most important one of them. In fact, it is among the highest-paying jobs in America. According to payscale, the average annual salary of a Scrum Master in the US is $92,298. In India, the national average annual salary of a Scrum Master is ₹13,70,589. 

CSM® vs CSPO® 

Now that agile has become the standard practice in many organizations, and Scrum has been the most widely followed and popular Agile methodology globally, the demand for product owners and scrum masters has skyrocketed. Both CSPO® and CSM® certifications have their advantages and merits based on the role and responsibilities. The decision regarding which one is the best for you depends on your interests. It will be best for you to earn the certification relevant to your current working role or are interested in pursuing it. The certified Scrum master course is a stepping stone for someone who wants to make a career as an Agile practitioner. It is best suited for scrum masters, testers, developers, and business analysts. The product owner course online is particularly useful for product owners, higher management, product managers, business analysts, and anyone interested in the project’s business aspects.