There is a lot of confusion for those wanting to work on sites here in the UK and a lot of what is happening is people being told they must get a CSCS card and then being told it costs a lot to get. This just isn’t true at all.   We have spoken to London based Kiwi construction company, Construct Recruitment to give you the facts and numbers behind this to help you out.

· CSCS is not a requirement on all construction sites – your site will require one of the following: no CSCS, just a CSCS certificate, any CSCS card, a CSCS card specific to your trade. Having a CSCS card means you’ll have more options when looking for work.

· The CSCS test is a 45 min test with 50 multi-choice questions. When you pass you will get a CSCS Certificate that’s valid for 2 years. It should cost around £50 at an independent test centre. There is no formal training for this, your best bet is to download the official revision app for £5.99 which includes mock tests.

If your site needs a CSCS card, once you have a CSCS Certificate you have a few options:

1) Get a Temporary (Red) CSCS card – this will cost £36 direct from CSCS and will only last 6 months (Total cost inc. revision app ~ £92)

2) Get a Labourers (Green) CSCS card – you will need to do a one-off 1 day “Level 1 H&S course” for this which will cost between £120-£150. Once you have this, you will need to pay additional £36 for the card from CSCS. This card will be valid for 5 years. (Total cost ~ £210-£240).

3) Get a Trade Specific/Managers (Blue/Gold/Black) CSCS card – to get this card you must have your qualifications mapped to their UK equivalent. If you have an overseas qualification you can map them across using Mapping currently costs £475 and can take 2 months to arrive. Note: if you apply for it whilst still in NZ/Aus, you don’t have to pay VAT so save £80. Once you have the UK equivalent, you need to send a copy to CSCS and pay the £36 for the relevant card. This card will be valid for 5 years. (Total cost inc. UK Naric ~ £490-£570 depending on where you apply from).

If you’re not sure what you need to do, or want to check you aren’t getting ripped off, call Construct Recruitment for free advice on 02089931001.

They have a CSCS test centre + do the 1 day H&S course for the Labourers card in their office so if the location works for you, just mention Kiwis in London and they’ll give a priority booking at no extra cost.

Link to official CSCS revision apps:

CSCS number to order card: 0344 99 44 777