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CEDA develops training standards to meet CSCS card requirements

CEDA e-learning crop
Much of CEDA’s new training courses can be accessed on the association’s e-learning platform.

CEDA has developed industry training standards to meet CSCS (Construction Skills Certification Scheme) card requirements following the Construction Leadership Council’s (CLC) decision to discontinue the existing CRO (Construction Related Occupation) card scheme.

The CLC’s decision to introduce the need for a suitable, role-specific qualification to obtain a CSCS card initially created two challenges to CEDA and member companies.

CSCS cards last 5 years, so the association’s first priority was to establish the deadlines before which the cards could still be obtained without the need for a qualification and publicise these to members to ensure that as many construction site workers as possible had cards for the next 5 years.

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Secondly, the CLC had specified NVQ levels for different roles and CITB (Construction Industry Training Board) had allocated an NVQ Level 2 for fitted interiors to cover commercial kitchen equipment installation. CEDA stated: “This NVQ was not at all relevant to the work carried out by our members, cost over £1,200 per person, with a total learning time of 192 hours.

“Furthermore, we established that the NVQ Level 6 for project managers was based very tightly on actual construction and therefore largely irrelevant to the project manager’s role within our industry, furthermore it would cost upwards of £2,000, with a total learning time of 1,064 hours.”

Therefore, after meeting with CSCS and Build UK, CEDA agreed with the relevant organisations that if it developed industry training standards that represent suitable qualification, to be assessed and approved by the awarding body and CSCS, then the NVQ routes would not be required.

The industry association drew upon the format of training standards its trailblazer group developed for the Apprenticeship Standard for Commercial Catering Equipment Installation and Maintenance Technicians in order to create the new standards.

Firstly, for catering equipment installation engineers without ACS gas accreditations, the knowledge and skills were divided into ‘technical’ and ‘non-technical’.  The key technical elements of the training are electrical competence and water regulations which are already covered by existing training courses.

Most of the non-technical training topics already existed within the CEDA e-learning platform, while those that do not will be assessed by the employer, against templates that the association has created.

Subsequently the association worked on developing a training standard for project managers, but realised there was value in creating two standards – one for project managers and one for project coordinators – the primary differences being the degree of technical, contractual and management training required to successfully carry out the two roles.

CEDA submitted the three draft training standards to JIB-PMES (Joint Industry Board for Plumbing Mechanical Engineering Services in England and Wales) and CSCS, and all three met their approval.

JIB-PMES has now created a new card for ‘Commercial Catering Engineer’ and will issue ‘Manager’ cards for those who attain the project manager and the project coordinator standards.

Assuming no prior training, the cost of undertaking and achieving the training standard for installation engineers without ACS gas accreditation is around £600 for CEDA members or £1,000 for non-members. For the Project Manager standard, it’s £1,200 for members and £1,800 for non-members, while the Project Coordinator one is free of charge for CEDA members and around £400 for non-members.

The vast majority of e-learning modules that are required across all standards are taken independently and accessed via the CEDA e-learning platform. The association will also facilitate the organisation of training such as a Water Regulations course, delivered by WaterRegs UK, and the various contract courses delivered by the Confederation of Construction Specialists.

Between 10-15 trainees will be welcomed on each course and the training will be run as often as needed to match demand.

Trainees need to satisfactorily complete the required training modules as specified in the training programme for each standard and then forward copies of the certificates from each course to CEDA who will verify that they have completed all modules and will then issue a numbered certificate to confirm that they have satisfactorily completed the standard. This certificate, together with a certificate for the relevant CITB Health, Safety and Environment test, will be accepted by JIB-PMES for a CSCS card.

Tags : CEDAcscs cardtraining
Clare Nicholls

The author Clare Nicholls

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