Changes to CSCS Cards will have major impact

The Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) has announced changes to one of the cards it issues. Given that CSCS has become the industry standard, it’s likely this will affect a large number of people.

Cards issued by the CSCS provide evidence that those working on a construction site have the required training and qualifications for the type of work that they are employed to do. Many construction firms insist on possession of a card to gain access to a site and there are a range of cards available to reflect the different trades and professions on a site, as well as the varying management levels involved.

The card that is being affected is the Construction Related Occupation (CRO) card.

The CRO was set up to cover those people who don’t fit into the established categories, but to obtain one the applicant only had to pass the CITB Health, Safety and Environment computer test.

The problem is the CSCS has issued over 300,000 CRO cards since 2005. It’s led to concerns that the CRO is being abused, so the CSCS has decided to remove it. It means all CRO cards issued from 1 October 2015 will expire on 20 September 2017 and won’t be renewed. Furthermore, new CRO cards will stop being issued altogether from 31 March 2017.  In future, the CSCS will insist that anyone applying for a card must hold the appropriate qualifications for their trade or profession.

While on the face of it this may seem like a sensible move to ensure that all those working on site hold the correct qualifications, the consequences are likely to have a major impact on the construction industry. Those people who currently hold CRO cards will need to undertake training courses to gain qualifications at a level that CSCS deems appropriate. It means that demand for courses is likely to be high from now on, so the advice from Aegis is to plan ahead if these qualifications are needed for your employees.

For more information on this issue, speak to one of our team on 01772 736522 or email