What is a CSCS card?

by Z Chesak
Updated: 18-07-2016

If you are planning to work in the UK construction industry you must hold a CSCS card. But what is a CSCS card and how can you get one?

CSCS stands for Construction Skills Certification Scheme and is the leading skills certification scheme within the UK construction industry. Since the 1990s the CSCS maintains a database of individuals working in the construction industry who are up to the required standards.

CSSC is a non-for-profit organisation set up by the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) to raise standards within the construction industry.

The CSCS card

Since the 1990s the CSCS keeps a database of those who have achieved the required set of qualifications to work in the UK construction sector. The CSCS card is issued as a proof of achieved required standards in order to be demonstrated to UK employers within the construction sector.

Holding a CSCS card shows that the holder is considered competent in his/her job in the UK construction sector. Almost all employers these days require that you hold a CSCS card prior to allowing you on their sites.

The CSCS card in addition to relevant qualifications is the proof that you have passed the CTIB Health, Safety and Environment test. This alongside relevant qualifications is a proof that you are considered competent in your job.

Types of cards available

There are various types of cards available to suit every possible requirement. All cards fall into one of these different categories:

  1. Red Card:
    - Apprentice
    - Experienced Technical, Supervisor or Manager
    - Experienced Worker
    - Trainee (craft and operative)
    - Trainee (technical, supervisory and management)
    - Provisional
  2. Green Card (for workers with basic skill levels):
    - Labourer
    - Basic Skills Card
    - Construction Site Operative (CSO)
  3. Blue Card (only after holding NVQ or SVQ Level 2):
    - Skilled Worker
  4. Gold Card (after achieving NVQ or SVQ Level 3):
    - Advanced Craft
    - Supervisory
  5. Black Card (after achieving NVQ or SVQ Level 4 or 5, otherwise known as managerial card):
    - Manager
  6. White/Yellow Card (for professionally qualified persons):
    - Academically Qualified Person
    - Construction Related Occupation (CRO)
    - Professionally Qualified Person
  7. Yellow Card:
    - Site Visitor (regardless of skill or experience)

It is extremely important that you apply for the card that covers your requirements and proves that you have all the relevant qualifications and skills. The best way to find out exactly which card you need is by using this online card finder: cscs.uk/com/cardfinder.


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