The CSCS card is fast becoming a compulsory requirement for all on site workers in the UK. With over 80% of small and large contractors complying with the CSCS scheme you will find it increasingly difficult to work on site without one. Whether you are working as a sole trader, sub contractor or main contractor a CSCS card can quickly establish your competency and ability to work safely on site; thus gaining you site permission in a fast, unequivocal way.
With the CSCS scheme covering 350 different construction associated occupations there is an assortment of CSCS cards on offer, from Trainee to Management level. Additionally CSCS have an Affiliated card scheme that connects to specific trade occupations such as Scaffolding, Plumbing and Electrical Engineering.
What do I Need?
The CSCS cards are colour coded depending upon your skill level and type of occupation and therefore the requirements for each card differs slightly.
At first glance the pre-requisite requirements for gaining a CSCS card may appear to be non-negotiable; however the CSCS scheme has worked hard to be as inclusive as possible and ensure that all workers can be eligible for some kind of card; whether that is a 12-month Temporary card or a fully-fledged Manager card.
To apply for a CSCS card directly you will need to provide proof of your qualifications, thus you need to hold a nationally recognised qualification in construction or construction related industry. You will also be required to sit and pass the Health, Safety & Environment test before the card is issued. The length and content of the Health and Safety will diverge depending upon the type of occupation and level of card you are applying for. However there are revision materials available to increase your chances of passing the test first time.
As aforementioned acquiring your CSCS card will be contingent to the qualifications you hold but your employment status and occupation will also affect you application and the type of card you apply for. You will need to be ready to discuss you occupational knowledge and your relevant industry experience.
What If I Don’t Meet the Requirements?
If you have construction industry experience but for some reason you haven’t acquired an industry accreditation or national qualification you can apply for the one of the Temporary Red CSCS card.
There are two to choose from; the Experienced Worker card or the Experienced Technician, Supervisor or Manager card. These cards are designed for workers who are undertaking a Construction NVQ in order to gain a full CSCS card; therefore you will need to provide proof of your course enrolment or registration. The Temporary cards are also dependent upon your occupation status and work experience; you will need at least 1 years recent on site experience in the appropriate role (at least 12 months in the past three years).
The Temporary cards are non-renewable so candidates must achieve the qualifications in the allotted time frame. The Experienced Worker card is valid for one year and the Experienced Technician, Supervisor or Manager card is valid for three years.