CSCS Smart Check app monitors skills

Despite huge advancements in the technology used to complete construction projects in recent years, little has changed in the way skills are vetted and verified. When workers arrive on site, the process of verifying that each has the qualifications, skills and experience required for the job is often rooted in the past.

But that’s about to change with the launch of the CSCS Smart Check app, which will allow gate staff to quickly check qualifications using a smartphone or tablet.

“The industry has long wanted to move away from visual inspections of plastic pieces,” says Andy Reakes, growth manager at the Joint Industry Board & Electrotechnical Certification Scheme.

“Relying solely on visual inspections of cards displaying the CSCS logo means these processes are more open to fraud, important details such as card validity and expiration date are missed, and the latest training records of the cardholder is not available for consultation.

“It is essential that the industry has a fast and efficient system in place to ensure that people have the right qualifications, skills and experience for their role,” he adds.

“It saves time on site because people don’t have to visit different websites, call contact centers and go through a number of verification processes.”

Reakes chaired the task force that developed the Smart Check app, which launched on April 1. It reads in real time the data behind all types of cards provided by the 38 systems using the CSCS logo.

People at the door can easily verify that someone is who they say they are, that they have a valid and up-to-date card, and that they have the appropriate training and qualifications for the job.

The app covers over two million current cards, enabling contactless contact verification, by scanning a card’s QR code or manually entering card details.

“The app will mainly tell you if the card is valid or not,” says Reakes. “It saves time on site because people don’t have to visit different websites, call contact centers and go through a number of verification processes.”

Improve security

As well as improving on-site efficiency, the app aims to improve building safety and raise standards.

“It’s about the life cycle of a project,” says Reakes. “From planning to demolition to handover, you need to have qualified and competent people at every stage, and it should be as easy as possible to verify that this is indeed the case. Employers must be confident that their workforce and that of contractors meet the necessary standards. »

While approximately 80% of CSCS cards will be readable on day one, the rest will be added over the following weeks, along with updates and improved features. For now, the task is to publicize the application.

“This is the biggest change to site entry processes since the introduction of CSCS over 20 years ago. This will begin to improve the image of safety and promote the need for a trained and fully qualified workforce.

The app is free to download and works with Apple iOS or Android devices. At launch, it works as a standalone application. Existing site entry systems such as turnstiles can continue if required as the project team works to make them compatible with the new application.

Learn more: www.cscs.uk.com/smartcheck

Alice F. Ponder