New Qualification Checking System launched by the ECS and City & Guilds

The Electrotechnical Certification Scheme (ECS) certifies the skills of electrotechnical workers across the UK.

Holding an ECS card proves your qualification status, main electrical occupation, identity, your health and safety awareness, as well as any additional disciplines in which you are skilled to work.

Many people try to falsify this certificate by lying. In order to keep the public safe from anyone who isn’t fully competent, the ECS and City & Guilds have launched a new qualification checking system. This checking system consists of a specially-designed computer programme which allows qualifications to be verified during an ECS card application and it has been developed by the Electrotechnical Certification Scheme and City & Guilds.

When an application is made to the ECS, the qualification details are searched for directly within the City and Guilds database to check the certificate number, name and date. In this way, fake certificates will be discovered easier. The new online system will also replace the previous method of manual checking between the two organisations, making the application process more efficient.

Anyone who is applying for an ECS Card should be prepared to have their qualifications checked. People who are trying to fraud the law are referred to the Fraud Investigations Team and to the police if necessary. They will investigate and decide upon appropriate action.

Martin Thurbon, ECS Contact Centre Operations Manager, said:

“We are continuously looking to improve our service and the robustness of the scheme overall. Our work with City & Guilds and other partners not only makes the application process more streamlined for customers but also importantly catches and deters those who attempt to gain an ECS card under false pretences. These people are potentially endangering the safety of themselves and others if they are carrying out work for which they are not qualified.”

David Phillips, City & Guilds Executive Director, Market Strategy, Products and Services, said:

“As an organisation, we are always looking to continuously improve our operational processes. This newly designed interface will ensure both organisations’ systems are communicating by providing a layer of security in identifying fraudulent certification and raising standards within the electrotechnical industry.”

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NVQ Assessors and Verifiers do not require CSCS Cards

Did you know NVQ Assessors and Verifiers do not require CSCS cards for accessing construction sites?

The Construction Leadership Council (CLC) agreed that from January 2015 the industry, including trade associations, contractors, clients, and the government should specify and promote card schemes carrying the CSCS logo with no equivalents accepted.

This is good news for the industry as it provides a consistent means of recognizing that an individual has achieved the agreed standard of qualification and skill for the occupation they are working in.

The CLC also recognizes that due to the diverse nature of construction projects, there are occasions when non-construction personnel needs to access a construction site, such as a delivery driver, machine maintenance personnel, and other non-construction related occupations.

On these occasions, the CLC accepts the person visiting a construction site would not be expected to carry a CSCS, but there should be clear industry guidance for non-construction personnel.

Amongst the occupations not required to carry a CSCS card are NVQ Assessors and Verifiers.

Following the agreement with Build UK, CSCS has issued the following guidance for NVQ Assessors and Verifiers:

  1. CSCS cards are intended for construction-related occupations only
  2. Whilst vitally important to the industry, the activity of assessing or verifying a worker on a construction site is not considered a construction-related activity
  3. Therefore, NVQ Assessors and Verifiers are not required to hold a CSCS card
  4. It is the responsibility of site managers to ensure all non-construction related personnel are inducted to the site and kept safe at all times
  5. A risk assessment should be carried out if necessary, and the site visitor should be escorted at all times
  6. NVQ Assessors and Verifiers will be visiting candidates who hold valid CSCS cards and these individuals could act as the Assessors and Verifiers escort whilst on site.

CSCS is aware that some constructions sites still operate a fully carded workforce policy. If your entry to such a site is refused because you do not hold CSCS card, please ask the site manager to view this article on the CSCS website.

The advice issued above is fully in line with industry desire to only issue CSCS cards when workers are engaged in a construction-related activity.

Read the original information on the official CSCS website HERE.

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