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It seems that ten schemes already carry the CSCS logo and, to get them all in line would be too complicated a struggle to win in the short term. So, with an application of bureaucratic procrastination, the decision is being put off until sometime in the future.

CSCS Card Board

But why do they want to change it? They’ve changed it enough, already, and only seemed to make it more complicated and less clear to site management who have to check everyone has their CSCS Card as part of site induction! Anyway, quite what do they mean by a “smart” card; something to swipe through an IT reader?

Admittedly the colours of the cards have always been a bit confusing. Historically the rating of cards had run from NVQ 2-equivalent, to NVQ 7-equivalent, same as a Master’s Degree in H&S. Now that is what my card is, coming from before the last change; CSCS Black Card Construction Manager. The only ones who ever seemed to be able to identify it, and treat me as someone with a bit of sense, were the H.S.E.. With the last changes it seems that someone straight from Uni with a degree, who has never actually worked on site, gets a Black Card?!!

So here’s an idea if they do want another change. Forget the trade or profession; give all cards an NVQ-equivalence which will then show just how safe on site someone is. Site management will soon be able to tell if an apprentice is likely to cut his fingers off or an Architect looks where he puts his feet as he wanders round.

That would still leave 7 colours, but if the card also said “NVQ 5” site management would immediately know what it said about the card-holder. Daft as it sounds, the CSCS Test is dead quick and easy to do – But only if you really know your H&S stuff at that level!

By Michael Wilson from York, United Kingdom (Bureaucrats) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

What’s your say? Should we give all cards an NVQ-equivalence?