What is a CSCS Card and Who Needs One?

The CSCS card is part of a training scheme to enable construction workers to enhance their career and work with a greater level of awareness over safety and risks of accidents and injuries while working on a construction site.

For a construction worker holding a CSCS card, it can offer them more opportunities than not having one. Construction employers now actively seek out candidates that hold CSCS cards because they know they will have received a very sound level of safety training that is essential when working on a building site.

The card will give you a nationally recognised piece of evidence of your skills, training and qualifications.  Most construction companies will ask for this credential as an essential requirement for any job applicants to ensure they will end up with well-trained employees.

Health & Safety equipment

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trousers
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helmet
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safety boots
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Different types of CSCS cards

CSCS cards come in a variety of different types, each one reflecting a different level of skill, knowledge and training related to working within the construction industry.

When starting in a career in the construction industry, it can seem a bit confusing to know which CSCS card you should be applying for. For those new to construction without any relevant qualifications, it is normal procedure to access the entry-level CSCS card, known as a Labourer Card. You don’t need to have any specific academic qualifications to apply for this card or have had any prior experience of working in the construction industry.

To qualify for the entry-level CSCS card or any of the other available CSCS cards, you will first need to have passed the CITB Health, Safety and Environment Test (CSCS Test) within the last 2 years. This is a standard test that assesses an individuals awareness of important safety features on a construction site, as well as what goes into making a productive and effective construction site.

CSCS training courses and tests are not expensive and they can be self-funded if you want to gain the CSCS card as an individual, or your employer can cover the cost of training for you.

For an employer applying on behalf of your employees, you will need to book them onto the CITB Health, Safety Environment Test which can be done on the CSCS website.

What is the CITB/CSCS Health, Safety and Environment Test?

To qualify for a CSCS card, a candidate must have passed the relevant version of the  CITB Health, Safety and Environment (HSE) test, which is more commonly known as the CSCS Test.

Each level of CSCS card will have a different test attached to it to accommodate for the different occupations the card covers. For example, there will be a different CSCS card for an entry-level construction worker than an employee in a supervisory role.

The test itself is made up of multiple-choice questions that cover many aspects of the health, safety and environmental issues and risked posed in a construction environment. The test is used to assess the candidate’s knowledge across a wide range of topics to ensure they are aware of the main health and safety features on a construction site.

The test is taken on a touch screen computer interface and once qualified, the accreditation will last for two years before expiring.