CSCS Cards – Everything You Need to Know

Learn all about the complicated world of CSCS cards in our new blog post. Construction Skills Certification Scheme Cards are essential in verifying qualifications and ensuring site safety in the construction industry.

This post will examine the significance of green and blue cards and essential eligibility criteria. Newcomers and experienced professionals can find all the info they need about CSCS card types and more.

Continue reading to gain some insights and discover how to begin applying for a CSCS card online.

Table Of Contents

What is the Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS)?
What is a CSCS card?
Who requires a valid CSCS card?
What is the purpose of a CSCS card?
Is it a legal requirement for construction workers to hold a CSCS card?
Types of CSCS Cards
How to apply for a CSCS card?
Which CSCS card do I need?
How much does a CSCS card cost?
Where to apply for a CSCS card?
How long is a CSCS card valid for?
Where to complete a CITB Health, Safety and Environment (HS&E) Test
How to Verify a CSCS Card
What is CSCS Smart Check?
Why choose Gliss Training Services for your training?

What is the Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS)?

The Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) is a key initiative for the construction industry. Established in the UK, CSCS validates the skills and qualifications of workers via a standardised card system.

You will see green cards, blue cards, and more, with each card colour corresponding to a specific role or skill level. This delivers a visual indication of an individual’s proficiency, helping to boost safety on construction sites.

The aims of CSCS are to:

  • Improve industry standards.
  • Promote a qualified workforce.
  • Deliver a secure, safe working environment.

Employers often require these cards as evidence of an individual’s competency. As such, CSCS has become a cornerstone for professionals and companies in the construction sector.

What is a CSCS card?

The Construction Skills Certification Scheme issues a CSCS card. It indicates quickly that an individual has obtained specific skills and qualifications relating to competencies and safety standards in the construction industry. You will find various colours of CSCS cards, including:

  • Green cards for labouring duties only.
  • Blue cards for skills in specific trades
  • Red cards are issued for a range of roles from trainee and apprentice to experiences technical manager.

Both physical and digital versions of CSCS cards are available. Digital cards are issued via the ‘my CSCS’ app for a convenient, modern solution for carrying and displaying your qualifications.

Who requires a valid CSCS card?

A valid CSCS card isn’t a legislative requirement for UK individuals working in the construction industry; however, most construction firms require workers to hold one. They are typically needed in the following roles:

  • Workers.
  • Supervisors.
  • Managers.
  • Professional trades people.

Employers usually insist on CSCS cards as part of their commitment to a skilled and qualified workforce. CSCS card requirements vary, but you will likely need to obtain one in order to engage in activities in the construction industry.

What is the purpose of a CSCS card?

The primary goal of CSCS cards is to demonstrate that an individual has undergone training to be competent in various skills in the construction industry. The cardholder will have the required skills to contribute to a good health and safety environment and deliver certain skills denoted by the card’s colour.

Most construction industry employers require CSCS cards as a prerequisite for working on construction sites. This ensures a safe, competent workforce. Cards of certain colours are awarded after passing a CITB HSE test or an accepted alternative, and after an individual has undergone any recognized training to carry out their intended role

Is it a legal requirement for construction workers to hold a CSCS card?

Currently, it is not a legal requirement for construction workers in the UK to hold a CSCS card. However, most major contractors and construction firms require workers to have one to demonstrate their skills and their basic proficiency in a safety and environment test.

If you are applying for a job, it’s advisable to check the employer’s specific requirements, as these can vary. Keep updated on the legal requirements in the construction industry, and know that you can apply for a CSCS card online, provided you meet the application requirements.

Types of CSCS Cards

If you are exploring options for CSCS card applications, you should understand the meanings of different coloured workers’ cards:

  • Green Card: This is the entry-level card for labouring duties only.
  • Blue Card: This is for craft occupations, indicating a more advanced skill level and specific trade qualification to NVQ Level 2.
  • Gold Card: This is also a skilled worker card, but indicates an advanced qualification to NVQ Level 3. There are also entirely separate Gold Cards for supervisors and managers.
  • Red Card: A provisional card often held by people undergoing training.
  • Black Card: Held by managers and professionals to highlight higher-level qualifications.

Understanding CSCS card types will give you an idea of what employers are looking for when hiring for different roles.


How to apply for a CSCS card?

CSCS card applications begin with gathering the necessary documents. You will need:

  • Qualification certificates.
  • Proof of professional body memberships.
  • Evidence that you have passed a CITB Health, Safety and Environment (HS&E) test in the last 2 years.

Use the CSCS card finder to identify the appropriate card for your needs. When you have done all of this, you can apply for your CSCS card online and submit the required information. It’s important that all the details you submit are accurate and valid.

Once processed, and if successful, you will receive your CSCS card which is your proof of holding the required qualifications and Health and Safety knowledge to carry out your duties on a construction site.

How to apply for a Professionally Qualified Person (PQP) CSCS card?

The Professionally Qualified Person card is for members of CSCS-approved professional bodies. All applicants will have to have passed the CITB Managers and Professional Health, Safety and Environment Test or the CIC Health and Safety Test.

To apply you must provide proof that you hold current membership of the professional body at an accepted CSCS level by providing on of the following.

  • A membership certificate (which shows membership for the current calendar year).
  • A membership card (both sides, confirming membership for the current calendar year).
  • An up-to-date letter or email from the professional body confirming membership for the current calendar year.
  • A receipt of payment for membership for the current calendar year.
  • A clearly dated screenshot showing your current membership, from your professional body’s website.

The CSCS Professionally Qualified Person card is valid for one year and cannot be renewed. You will need to reapply each year and applications to renew an existing card will be rejected.


Which CSCS card do I need?

You can use the CSCS Card Finder to find out which card you will need for the construction work you intend to apply for.

It’s vitally important to get it right before embarking on any training required for that card, especially as that training will likely cost you time and money.

We offer a free CSCS card checking service and can help you understand what training and qualifications you will need to apply for the CSCS card you wish to obtain. As an accredited provider of CITB training and a ProQual approved NVQ centre offering construction NVQs, we can also provide the relevant training you will need to progress your career in construction.

If you would like to use our free CSCS card checker service and get expert advice from our friendly team, please get in touch using the button below.



How much does a CSCS card cost?

At the time of writing, the standard fee for a CSCS card is £36. This cost will apply when you renew or replace your card.

It’s worth noting that this fee does not include your NVQ qualification. This will vary depending on the type of qualification and where you obtain it. You will also need to complete your CITB Health Safety and Environment test at a cost of £22.50.

Where to apply for a CSCS card?

Once you have completed all the necessary training for your desired CSCS card type, card applications can be submitted directly to the Construction Skills Certification Scheme. You are not automatically given one upon completion of your NVQ. You must submit the application along with the necessary documentation and pay your fee. You can apply for a CSCS card here.

How long is a CSCS card valid for?

Generally speaking, a CSCS card is valid for five years however different cards can be valid for different amounts of time. After your card expires, you must renew it by demonstrating continued competence and up-to-date qualifications. The requirements for renewal may vary depending on the card type and your role in the construction industry.

Where to complete a CITB Health, Safety and Environment (HS&E) Test

You must find a local qualification and training provider that can deliver the CITB Health, Safety and Environment Test. We can offer this training online or in-person to get you ready for your CSCS card application. All our trainers are fully accredited and experienced in delivering this training to countless learners.

We have helped thousands of people get what they need for CSCS approval to work on construction sites, and we can do the same for you.

Check out our Accredited CITB Courses.

How to Verify a CSCS Card

CSCS card checks are important, and site managers and employers typically conduct regular checks. CSCS always advise electronic checks rather than visual inspections. This is because electronic checks provide an accurate method of verifying that CSCS card holders hold a valid CSCS card, rather than a fraudulent copy.

Popular CSCS card checkers to verify a CSCS card online include:

  • CSCS Smart Check in the app.
  • The CITB Card Checker.

Individuals can also log into their CSCS online account to verify their valid card. It is crucial to ensure your card remains valid if you want to protect your eligibility status. These online tools provide a quick, reliable way of confirming qualifications and competency.

What is CSCS Smart Check?

CSCS Smart Check is a reliable online CSCS card checker that reliably informs site managers and employers of the validity of an individual seeking work in the construction industry.

Users can use the CSCS Smart Check app to check a worker’s credentials quickly. This is an efficient way to ensure compliance with all-important construction site safety and competency standards.

With this electronic verification method, you can streamline the process for a convenient and accurate solution to check the status of CSCS cards.


CSCS cards are an important part of the modern construction industry. They are a simple solution for people to show that they have obtained the skills necessary to work on construction sites in the UK.

Contact us to ask about construction training programs if you want to start working in the field. We offer CITB Health, Safety and Environment training and other programs to help you get certified and validated fast, alongside courses to develop in the construction industry.

Why choose Gliss Training Services for your training?


Gliss Training employees live out our values every day as learners and teachers ourselves. Our culture is diverse, inclusive, and committed to personal and professional development. We’re not afraid to take on a new challenge, and we love taking Gliss Training courses!

Whether it is our security, first aid, food, APLH, teaching or any other training courses all Gliss Training employees work to unique standards of professionalism and excellence. We offer bespoke services to all of our clients and have the privilege to be the first choice of all of our clients, past and present, for their training needs.