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Master the Leading SAFe / SAFe Agilist Certification Exam

  • Scaling Agile
Created on :
May 4, 2023
Saket Bansal
Updated on :
July 4, 2023
2 Comments
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Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) has gained popularity in recent years, and the Leading SAFe certification program is one of its most popular offerings. Congratulations on taking the first step towards obtaining your SAFe Agilist certification.

If you’re preparing for the Leading SAFe/SAFe Agilist exam and looking for tips and pointers to help you pass on your first attempt, you’ve come to the right place. Our blog is packed with insights that will give you the confidence you need to ace the exam.

The Leading SAFe training program covers everything that leaders and managers need to know about the SAFe framework to drive successful transformations. After passing the certification exam, you will earn the SAFe Agilist certification.

Overview of SAFe Agilist 6.0 Exam

  • SAFe Agilist exam: moderate complexity, mainly knowledge-based questions.
  • Official Leading SAFe Training course: mandatory for taking the exam.
  • Exam preparation: 10-20 hours post-training, typically within one week.
  • SAFe vocabulary: crucial, understanding concepts alone insufficient.
  • Exam format: browser-based, non proctored, no application download needed.
  • First attempt: included in training fee, valid for 30 days; additional or late attempts: $50 each.
  • Exam details: 45 questions, 80% pass mark, 90 minutes, no negative marking.
  • Leading SAFe Student Workbook: primary resource for exam preparation.
  • Take Mock test before taking the final exam.
  • SAFe information: SAFe 6.0 Framework .

Exam Content Outline

Based on Scaled Agile’s official content, the following is the Exam Content Outline for the Leading SAFe Exam:

TopicPercentage Coverage in Exam
Lesson 1 : Digital Age and Business Agility12-14%
Lesson 2: Lean- Agile Leaders29-33%
Lesson 3: Team and Technical Agility6-8%
Lesson 4: Agile Product Delivery29-33%
Lesson 5: Lean Portfolio Management12-14%
Lesson 6: Leading the Change6-8%

Exam Pointers / Tips:

Below are some pointers, presented as questions, to illustrate the type of content you can expect from each lesson in the Leading SAFe Exam. Review these questions alongside your Leading SAFe Digital Workbook to ensure a comprehensive understanding and increase your chances of passing the exam.

Lesson 1: Digital Age and Business Agility – 12-14%

  1. What issues arise when organizing around hierarchical functions?
  2. Why is a dual operating system necessary for Business Agility?
  3. What are different stages of technological revolution?
  4. In which areas of an organization should a Traditional Hierarchy system be used?
  5. In which areas of an organization should a Value Stream Network be used?
  6. What is Business Agility?
  7. How does SAFe provide a second operating system to enable Business Agility?
  8. What triggers the Business Agility Value Stream?
  9. How do SAFe’s Seven Core Competencies enable Business Agility?
  10. Which Lean Enterprise Core Competency helps align strategy and execution?
  11. What are the three dimensions of Organizational Agility?
  12. What are the three dimensions of Team and Technical Agility?
  13. How do SAFe’s Four Configurations assist in providing the right solution for each Enterprise?
  14. When is Large Solution SAFe needed?
  15. How to measure the business agility?

Lesson 2: Lean-Agile Leaders – 29-33%

  1. What are the three dimensions of Lean-Agile Leadership Competencies?
  2. What are the five Lean Thinking principles?
  3. What are the four Agile values?
  4. What is a Value Stream?
  5. Why is it important to optimize the full Value Stream?
  6. What are the four SAFe Core Values?
  7. How can leaders promote relentless improvement?
  8. What are the ten SAFe Principles?
  9. Provide an example of “Take an Economic View” in SAFe.
  10. List the attributes of Systems Thinking.
  11. Does optimizing a component optimize the system?
  12. What is needed for a system to behave well as a whole?
  13. Why should we assume variability and preserve options?
  14. What is a set-based approach?
  15. What are the advantages of shorter learning cycles?
  16. List the problems associated with the phase-gate Milestones approach.
  17. What are the eight flow accelerators?
  18. Discuss the importance of small batches.
  19. What are the disadvantages of large batches?
  20. What is the impact of higher transaction costs?
  21. What is the impact of higher holding costs?
  22. What are the benefits of reducing transaction costs?
  23. List five negative impacts of long queues.
  24. What does optimizing flow involve identifying and reducing?
  25. Provide examples of applying cadence and synchronization in SAFe.
  26. How does Peter Drucker define knowledge workers?
  27. What are the benefits of unlocking the intrinsic motivation of knowledge workers?
  28. When does a Roadmap become a queue?
  29. Which SAFe Principle includes providing autonomy with purpose, mission, and minimum constraints?
  30. Which types of decisions should remain centralized?
  31. What are the key practices of decentralized decision-making?
  32. Which factors help unlock the intrinsic motivation of knowledge workers?
  33. What are the benefits of organizing around development Value Streams?
  34. What are the disadvantages of organizing around functional silos?
  35. Why do Lean-Agile Leaders try to connect the silos of business, system engineering, hardware, software, test, and quality assurance?

Lesson 3: Team and Technical Agility – 6-8%

  1. Why Team and Technical Agility?
  2. What are the three dimensions of Team and Technical Agility?
  3. What is a cross-functional team?
  4. What are the responsibilities of a SAFe Scrum Master/Team Coach?
  5. What are the responsibilities of a Product Owner?
  6. How does a Scrum Master improve flow?
  7. How does a Product Owner support the team in delivering value?
  8. Who manages the team backlog?
  9. How does SAFe Scrum work?
  10. What are the key iteration events in SAFe Scrum?
  11. How does SAFe Team Kanban work?
  12. What are Agile quality practices?
  13. What are the benefits of shifting learning left?
  14. What are the benefits of pairing and peer review?
  15. What are the benefits of collective ownership and T-shaped skills?
  16. What are the benefits of artifact standards and the definition of done?
  17. What are the benefits of workflow automation?
  18. What is the role of a Release Train Engineer (RTE)?
  19. What is the role of Product Management?
  20. What is the role of a System Architect?
  21. What is the role of a Business Owner (BO)?
  22. What is the role of the System Team?
  23. How are Stream-aligned teams organized?
  24. How are Complicated Subsystem teams organized?
  25. How are Platform teams organized?
  26. How are Enabling teams organized?
  27. Which role serves as the Servant Leader for the Agile Release Train?
  28. Who has content authority to make decisions at the user story level during PI Planning?
  29. Who has content authority over Features?
  30. What do Product Owners have content authority over?
  31. What is the purpose of the Iteration Review?
  32. Which role serves as the Servant Leader for the Agile Release Train?
  33. Who has content authority to make decisions at the user story level during PI Planning?

Lesson 4: Agile Product Delivery – 29-33%

  1. How does Agile Product Delivery enable business agility?
  2. What are the three dimensions of Agile Product Delivery?
  3. What benefits does a customer-centric mindset produce?
  4. What is design thinking?
  5. What is the double diamond approach?
  6. What is the purpose of User Personas?
  7. Which tool helps teams develop a deep, shared understanding of and empathy for the customer?
  8. Which tool can help design the end-to-end customer experience?
  9. Which tool captures user workflow?
  10. How does SAFe define a feature?
  11. What is an architectural runway?
  12. What builds the architectural runway?
  13. What are small increments of value that can be developed in days and are relatively easy to estimate called?
  14. How are features implemented?
  15. How are user stories estimated?
  16. What is Cost of Delay (CoD)?
  17. How are features prioritized?
  18. How is WSJF calculated?
  19. What is PI Planning?
  20. When does the PI Planning meeting occur?
  21. Who participates in the PI Planning meeting?
  22. Who owns story planning and high-level estimates in PI Planning?
  23. What are the benefits of PI Planning?
  24. What are the inputs to PI Planning?
  25. What are the outputs from PI Planning?
  26. At the end of PI Planning, after dependencies are resolved and risks are addressed, what is the default method used for the confidence vote?
  27. During the final plan review, how are program risks addressed using ROAM? What do the letters in ROAM represent?
  28. During which event are the Team PI Objectives agreed upon?
  29. How often should System Demos occur in the default SAFe cadence?
  30. If a program repeatedly shows separate feature branches rather than a true System Demo, which practice should be reviewed to address the issue?
  31. In the ART Kanban, why are Work-in-Process limits necessary for some steps?
  32. On day two of PI Planning, what are the possible types of changes based on the previous day’s management review and problem-solving meeting?
  33. Which two characteristics does Weighted Shortest Job First give preference to?
  34. What are the three components of the Continuous Delivery Pipeline?
  35. What items appear on the ART Planning board?
  36. What are two of the Agile Release Train Sync meetings?
  37. What does the Continuous Delivery Pipeline enable?
  38. What is SAFe’s release strategy?
  39. What is the recommended way to express a feature?
  40. When are planning adjustments communicated back to the Agile Release Train after the management review?
  41. Why do Business Owners assign business value to Teams’ PI Objectives?
  42. Why is it important to decouple deployment from release?
  43. How do ART events keep the train on the tracks?
  44. How is ART predictability measured?

Lesson 5: Lean Portfolio Management -12-14%

  1. What elements are included in a SAFe portfolio?
  2. How can you create a template to identify a specific SAFe portfolio?
  3. What are the two primary outcomes of Enterprise Strategy Formulation?
  4. Which factors contribute to Enterprise Strategy Formulation?
  5. How do Strategic Themes connect various aspects of an organization?
  6. What aspects of an organization do Strategic Themes impact?
  7. How can Portfolio Vision be defined?
  8. What constitutes a portfolio Epic?
  9. What roles do Enabler Epics play in a SAFe portfolio?
  10. What are the essential requirements for all Epics?
  11. What are the four key components of an Epic hypothesis statement?
  12. At which level is funding allocated in the SAFe framework?
  13. What are the four guardrails of lean budgeting?
  14. How does a Portfolio Kanban system benefit an organization?
  15. What does the Portfolio Kanban system outline?
  16. In which stage of the Portfolio Kanban system is a new Epic with a completed Lean business case introduced?
  17. At which point in the Portfolio Kanban system is a Go/No-go decision made?
  18. How can a minimum viable product be defined?
  19. What occurs during the Review stage of the Portfolio Kanban system?

Lesson 6: Leading the Change -6-8%

  1. What are the key attributes of a leader who leads by example?
  2. What is the subsequent step for a team that has adopted the SAFe Implementation Roadmap and trained executives, managers, and leaders?
  3. On what principles is the SAFe Implementation Roadmap based?
  4. What are the initial three steps of the SAFe Implementation Roadmap?
  5. What are the final three steps of the SAFe Implementation Roadmap?
  6. What can serve as a practical template for implementing SAFe within an organization?
  7. What is the final step in Kotter’s change management approach?
  8. What does this statement define: “A series of activities proven effective for successful SAFe implementation”?
  9. When should new approaches be integrated into an organization’s culture?
  10. Which leadership style fosters a safe environment for learning, growth, and mutual influence?
  11. What is the purpose of LACE (Lean Agile Center of Excellence) in an organization?

Utilize the following pointers to gauge your preparedness for the exam. It is advisable to first study the exam pointers and seek out the answers, then proceed to take mock tests. Aim for a 90% score in the mock tests, as this indicates you are well-prepared for the final exam. If you have any questions about the pointers provided, feel free to post your queries in the comment section below.

If you haven’t attended the Leading SAFe certification class yet, consider enrolling in one of our upcoming Leading SAFe courses to enhance your knowledge and skills further. We also conduct sessions in Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Pune and Hyderabad.

Name Date Place
SAFe Certification and Training 29 & 30 June 2024 Chennai More Details
SAFe Certification and Training 10 & 11 August 2024 India More Details

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