The Construction Skills and Services Scheme card or CSCS card is requirement that is deemed vital by those who are seeking for employment in the field of construction. Construction workers and professionals who are, in one way or another, working in the industry are highly encouraged to obtain CSCS cards as well. In the UK, major infrastructure developments are currently under way. The increasing demand for efficient, modern, and high-tech buildings and other structures have made the construction industry extremely popular to individuals who are looking for a promising, stable, and profitable source of living.
The successful development of construction projects will not be possible without the efforts of hardworking, dependable, and highly-skilled construction workers. Superior quality is indeed the name of the game and in order for contractors to meet deadlines and uphold high standards, they will need to hire qualified, competent, committed, and confident employees. Gone are the days when companies pick employees without background assessment and intensive evaluation. With the Construction Skills and Services Scheme, employers are given a tool which expertly assists them in the process of hiring competent, skilled, and highly knowledgeable employees at various levels.
Standards are upheld by the UK construction industry due to the inherent need for excellent workmanship and high value on safety. Work-related accidents are most common in construction sites. Employees are surrounded by hazards, risks, and dangers everywhere they go. In order to guarantee fast and efficient delivery of work and ensure safety of its workforce, the government implemented the Construction Skills and Services Scheme in the mid 90s.
The CSCS card offers an assortment of benefits to all parties concerned. Getting a CSCS card is now mandatory not only among construction workers, but to all those who work in the field of construction and building irrespective of the position that they hold.
Since its inception, the rate of accidents in and around building projects and construction sites decreased dramatically while revenues and productivity exponentially increased overtime.
In order to obtain a CSCS card, employees will need to pass the CSCS test exam. The competency exam aptly called the CITB- Constructions Skills Heath, Safety, and Environmental examination must also be taken by the applicant as this will gauge their understanding and experience regarding the standards of safety that need to be followed at the workplace. There is a list of CSCS test exams as of late, and the type of CSCS card as well as exam will depend on the following elements:
- Job position
- Years of work experience
- Existing or previous memberships from professional qualifying organizations
These factors will determine the type of CSCS exam, and consequently, the CSCS card that you will be provided with once you pass the exam.
Although there are almost 220 job competencies in the construction industry, the exam is generally subdivided into two types namely:
- Operative CSCS
- Managerial and Professional CSCS
These two categories are further subdivided into twelve subcategories.
- Red Trainee ( Craft and Operative)
- Red Trainee (Technical, Supervisory, and Management)
- Green Card Construction Site and Operative
- Blue Skilled Worker
- Blue Craft Unit Level
- Gold Card Skilled Worker
- Gold Card Supervisor
- Black Card Manager
- White/Yellow Professionally Qualified Person
- White/Grey Construction Related Occupation
- Yellow Card Regular Visitor
- Platinum Card Manager
Although the requirements for each of these subgroups differ, all applicants need to pass the Safety, Health, and Environmental exam too. Majority of construction employees must need to present their National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) card as well. Without an NVQ card, an applicant will be unable to take the CSCS exam. Employees and apprentices may also need to obtain recommendations to be able to apply for a CSCS card.
There are currently 150 testing centres and affiliates that are authorized to offer CSCS exam, and eventually a CSCS card to passing applicants. With the abundance of testing centres, there is definitely one location that is near your area of residence or workplace. You may also directly call the CSCS testing company to apply for an exam.
Upon calling, you will then be asked several questions regarding your current job position. The representatives will then recommend the type of CSCS card that is most suitable to your job post. Furthermore, you will be given the list of requirements that need to be accomplished and submitted in order for the application for a CSCS card to start right away.
Once the type of CSCS card is identified and the requirements are then completed, the next step is to take the Construction Skills Health, Safety, and Environmental Test. In order to better the safety and productivity at the workplace, employees must possess awareness on various health-related and safety topics that are deeply related to their specific work duties.
The type Construction Skills Health, Safety, and Environmental exam that need to be taken by an applicant will be based on his job title:
- Craft and Operative
- Technical, Supervisory, and Management
- Construction Related Occupations
Booking is made easy as CSCS testing centres feature hotlines where interested individuals can simply call and later on schedule their exams right away. Applicants can even book their exam two days before preferred date.
CSCS Revisions Materials
Even skilled workers and construction professionals need a refresher course before taking a stab at the CITB- Construction Skills Health, Safety, and Environmental Test. In order to prepare and qualify for a CSCS card, applicants are highly encouraged to purchase CSCS Revisions Materials. These materials serve as study guides that contain all the knowledge and information that you need to pass the exam. CSCS revision materials come in two forms namely, DVD and book versions. The type of CSCS Revision material that you need will basically depend on your preferred medium for learning.
The CSCS Revision materials contain questions and answers that are all health and safety topics that you need to know in relation to your job position. There are also practise or mock tests included in these revision materials. Taking these sample tests will further increase your confidence prior to taking the test as well as improve your chances of passing the CSCS exam.
Once all requirements are submitted and passed the CITB- Healthy, Safety, and Environmental exam, you will be awarded with your own CSCS card in a matter of weeks.