As of the 31st March 2017, CSCS now solely issue cards to those with construction related occupations. Historically, Construction Related Occupation (CRO) cards were also being issued to non-construction related roles as well, but this in no longer the case. However, it should be noted that CRO cards issued since 1st October 2015 will expire on 30th September 2017.
In a recent Construction News article, Graham Wren Chief Executive of CSCS points out that some workers entering a site
are being wrongly refused as some sites are still operating a 100 per cent carded workforce policy. These workers not being allowed entry are to perform a non-construction activity, such as catering staff, drivers delivering materials, cleaners or security guards. This blanket policy has in the past usually been stipulated by head offices or clients insisting all workers and visitors should carry a CSCS card.
What has prompted Mr Wren’s to make a statement is that CSCS has stopped issuing cards for these and more than 60 other unrelated occupations. Furthermore, he elaborates on the changes to the card scheme:
“the blind faith many employers place in a 100 per cent carded workforce can introduce unnecessary safety risks on site.”
The opinion of his organisation is that cards are often being used simply as a means for the worker to gain access to site, rather than to verify the cardholder’s qualifications. Sometimes cards are given no more than a quick glance, rather than a thorough inspection to ensure the cardholder has the skills and training for the job they do on site.
The move away from a coverage of 100% will see an increase in the numbers of individuals turning up to site without a card. However, he points out that CSCS are not asking Site Managers to allow just anyone in. Those they do allow in with non-construction qualifications will still need to be inducted and informed about health & Safety. Therefore, the onus is still completely on the Site Manager to police access entry and check qualifications.
CSCS state that their decision not to issue cards for unrelated occupations is a considerable change for the industry, but one that has the potential to raise standards, improve safety and move us ever closer to what industry has long desired: a fully qualified workforce.
As a CSCS IT partner we have access to their database to check worker CSCS cards are in date and not fake. Once checked, workers can continue to use their CSCS on site or alternatively a Mosaic Smartcard can be issued. When the CSCS card expires, an ‘administrator’ is notified, who can inform the worker to get it renewed.
Non-construction related roles can easily be added to the skills matrix on the online Mosaic system and cards can then be issued to these personnel. Qualifications and expiry dates can also be included as they would be with construction related roles. In this way the competencies of these previous CRO card roles are still verified and vetted under the system. Visitor cards can also be issued and dealt with in accordance with the respective visitor policy on site.
This complete ‘one stop shop’ system allows management to monitor competencies for all workers, construction and non-construction alike, ensuring best practise and high standards can be maintained across the ‘whole’ workforce.
Our complete solution comes with Access Control, Automated Inductions, Competency Management, and Asset tracking modules making the Project Managers life considerably easier to track their workforces. Please follow the link to find out more about our solutions…