Scrum is (by far) the most popular way of Agile working, used by approximately 56% of companies for software development Sprints.
This number is likely on the rise, meaning one main thing: Scrum Masters are fast becoming in high demand.
Remote Working = Increased Need for Scrum Masters
Scrum Masters had their work cut out for them even before the pandemic, but once the majority of work turned remote, their challenges doubled practically overnight.
As the team’s facilitator and process watchdog, a Scrum Master needs to ensure that everyone is on the same page, working in tandem and on track.
But when a team is suddenly remotely scattered (likely with outside influences drawing away their focus during work hours), these responsibilities become a lot trickier to stand by.
A development team is only as strong as their Scrum Master. And that Scrum Master has to ensure that their team is organized, communicative and collaborative – and even more so when their team isn't located in one place.
Taking all of this into account, it becomes a lot clearer why demand for Scrum Masters has grown more than ever during the pandemic, and will continue well after: where chaos could reign and demand is increased, a Scrum Master can see through it, organize it, and make it work.
Average Scrum Master Salaries
While not everyone is cut out for the life of a Scrum Master, those who do venture into the field will be rewarded nicely for their efforts. According to salary comparison site Glassdoor, Scrum Masters are one of the top 25 paid jobs in the US.
The Scrum Master Salary Report 2023 of 1,143 Scrum Masters found that the average Scrum Master salary is $80,995. This is down from last year's average salary of $83,687. However, the five-year trend of Scrum Master salaries is still high, and increasing.
The study also identified the top ten earners in the dataset. Their annual income was evenly distributed between $250,000 and $500,000.
Why Has The Scrum Master’s Average Salary Decreased From Last Year?
The answer is the macro economic environment. The world is facing high inflation, which is driving high costs. This has put a massive pressure on companies to downsize, or terminate employees in attempts to decrease their cost-base. Technology companies have been disproportionately affected by these job-cuts, and given that the majority of Scrum Masters work in tech, these cuts are responsible for lower Scrum Master salaries.
How Does A Scrum Masters Certifications Affect Salary?
The survey found that salary increases are directly correlated with the quantity and quality of obtained certifications. The median difference between having no certification and having an advanced-level certification, like the PSM II, is as much as $5,000 annually. Additional qualifications, such as SCM, ICP-ACC, and PMI-ACP that fit your organization’s needs add up to another $26,000 annually to your paycheck.
Have a look at the average annual salaries of Scrum Masters with different certifications:
Certified Scrum Master (CSM): $89,150
Professional Scrum Master (PSM): $91,000
Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP): $108,000
Agile Scrum Master (ASM): $115,000
Scrum Master Certified (SMC): $115,000
SAFe Scrum Master: $114,546
The conclusion here is simple, as a Scrum Masters salary was seen to increase as they gained experience and progressed to middle and senior levels.
Interestingly, the median difference between junior-level income and senior-level income was roughly $30,000. Such a significant increase reinforces the principle that experienced Scrum Masters can warrant a higher salary.
Scrum Master Salaries for U.S. States & Cities
Scrum Masters are highly sought after because of the skills they possess and the challenges they are able to resolve. While this is not a job for the faint of heart, if you are passionate about managing teams, resolving conflict, and becoming a team player, then this might be the right position for you.
Here is what a Scrum Master can expect to earn in major cities across the U.S:
Scrum Master Salary in Dallas
A Scrum Master in Dallas earns an average salary of $123,231. A city with strong economic growth, Dallas is a thriving center for many large businesses. Over 65,000 businesses call Dallas home, and you can expect many of them to adopt Scrum.
Scrum Master Salary in Atlanta
Scrum Masters in Atlanta typically make $121,566 per year. Thirty-one companies with headquarters in metro Atlanta are listed on the 2022 Fortune 1000, making this a desirable city to work in for many.
Scrum Master Salary in Houston
On average, a Scrum Master earns $118,843 per year in Houston. Being the largest city in Texas and the fourth largest in the United States, Houston is widely considered to be a major corporate center.
Scrum Master Salary in Chicago
The average Scrum Master salary in Chicago is $125,405. With a diverse mix of more than 540,000 businesses, you can rest assured that there will be a wide range of job opportunities available for a Scrum Master there.
Scrum Master Salary in Maryland
The average salary for Scrum Masters in Maryland is $108,776. It is likely that you will find Scrum Master employment opportunities in many business sectors in Maryland, including construction, cyber, manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, and data analytics.
Scrum Master Salary in New York City
A Scrum Master in New York City earns an average salary of $115,942. On the basis of economic output, the Big Apple is ranked as the most powerful global city in the U.S. Over 451,000 small businesses also play a key role in the New York State economy.
Scrum Master Salary in Charlotte, NC
The average Scrum Master salary in Charlotte, North Carolina, is $121,359. In the second quarter of 2022, Charlotte gained 12,000 new jobs, making this thriving city the 8th fastest-growing in the country.
Scrum Master Salary in Los Angeles
For Scrum Masters in Los Angeles, the average salary is $134,159. As one of the most thriving cities worldwide, Los Angeles is home to hundreds of thousands of employees working in the world's leading high-tech and manufacturing industries.
Scrum Master Salary in New Jersey
The average salary for a Scrum Master in New Jersey is $117,961. The economy of New Jersey is diverse, including major pharmaceutical, life science, financial, and advanced manufacturing companies.
Scrum Master Salary in Austin
Austin's average Scrum Master salary is just over $121,000. Austin's industrial market alone comprises approximately 57 million square feet, making it an ideal location to conduct Scrum-based projects such as advanced manufacturing and data management.
Scrum Master Salary in Massachusetts
For Scrum Masters in Massachusetts, the average salary is $116,500. The Bay State is the most populous of all six states in the New England region of the United States, with a per capita income that ranks third in the nation, making it a highly desirable state to live and work in.
Scrum Master Salary in Minneapolis
A safe Scrum Master salary estimate in Minneapolis is $124,582. Minneapolis has the highest number of Fortune 500 companies per capita in the world. The Twin Cities are, in fact, home to sixteen Fortune 500 companies, as well as thirty Fortune 100 companies.
Scrum Master Salary in Texas
In Texas, the average salary for a Scrum Master is $117,379 per year. Texas has the second largest economy in the United States, with a GDP of $2 trillion, just after California. Owing to this, there is certain to be an abundance of job opportunities for Scrum Masters.
Scrum Master Salary in Ohio
The average Scrum Master salary in Ohio is $111,883. The largest employment sector in Ohio is trade, transportation, and utilities, followed by health care and education, government, and manufacturing.
Scrum Master Salary in Seattle
The average Scrum Masters in Seattle makes $137,127. This city is the third-richest major U.S. city by household income. This results in high-quality and sustainable employment opportunities in the city.
Scrum Master Salary in Boston
In Boston, Scrum Masters make $121,610 a year. There was positive job growth across most industries in Boston, particularly in health care and social assistance, education, and professional and technical services.
Scrum Master Salary in Denver
A safe Scrum Master salary estimate in Denver, Colorado, is a little over $118,000. One of the fastest-growing big cities in the U.S., Denver boasts a variety of industries, including aerospace, broadcast and telecommunications, healthcare, wellness, financial services, bioscience, energy, and IT.
Scrum Master Salary in Philadelphia
A Scrum Master in Philadelphia earns an average salary of $128,164. In 2025, Philadelphia is expected to generate 774,900 jobs, approximately 5% higher than the 738,800 before the epidemic.
Scrum Master Salary in Phoenix
Scrum Masters in Phoenix, Arizona earn an average salary of $119,481. Phoenix is primarily a healthcare, government, and transportation hub. Many rural areas in Arizona still rely heavily on agriculture and mining, the state's original export industries.
Scrum Master Salary in San Francisco
A Scrum Master in San Francisco earns an average salary of $134,464. You can earn up to $170,000 in the financial services & online banking sector. The Bay Area is also home to a variety of industries, including agriculture, manufacturing, film production, construction, and technology.
Scrum Master Salary in California
On average, a Scrum Master earns $123,361 per year in the Golden State. As the world's largest subnational economy, California would rank fifth in the world if it were its own country, just after Japan and Germany.
Scrum Master Salary in Connecticut
Scrum Masters in Connecticut earn an average salary of $117,630.. Although Connecticut is mainly a middle-class state, it is recognized as a global leader in investment and asset management and is home to North America's largest fuel cell power plant.
Scrum Master Salary in Miami
In Miami, the average Scrum Master salary is $120,253. The city of Miami has one of the most robust economies in the country, with an unemployment rate of just 2.3%. Its biggest industries are tourism, finance, and telecommunications.
Scrum Master Salary in Orlando
Scrum Masters in Orlando, Florida earn an average salary of $114,533. With its parks and many attractions, Orlando is one of the best-known cities in the state and has a strategic location in the middle of the state. The support entrepreneurs receive here is one of many reasons why it’s a great place to start a business.
Scrum Master Salary in San Diego
A Scrum Master in San Diego, California, earns an average salary of $114,986. Manufacturing clusters in San Diego span a wide range of industries, from defense and aerospace to shipbuilding and repair, to medical devices and craft brewing, to sports and lifestyle.
Scrum Master Salary in Georgia
The average salary for a Scrum Master in the state of Georgia is $113,334. Real estate, information, and manufacturing accounted for the majority of employment in 2022, while unemployment rates averaged at 3.1%.
Scrum Master Salaries in Companies
Scrum Masters working in different industries, and at different companies can also affect their salaries.
See here the annual salaries of Scrum masters working across a range of industries and companies:
Thomson Reuters: $104,130
UnitedHealth Group: $97,904
J.P. Morgan: $91,786
Capital One: $87,732
Goldman Sachs: $102,979
Scrum Master Predictions for 2023 and Beyond
Moving forward, Scrum Masters are going to become an even hotter commodity than they already are.
Between having new team members to onboard, their increasingly growing development teams, and continuing to help teams implement and refine their Agile framework, there’s certainly a lot of work to be done.
With every development Sprint and Scrum team seeking to become the fastest and most efficient yet, the Scrum Master plays a key role. 2023 seems to be the beginning of this exciting evolution, with much more yet to happen.