Changes to CSCS Red Card

Trainee cards are available to new entrants to the industry allowing them access to sites whilst they undertake their construction related qualification. Any training undertaken must be based on a National Occupational Standard eg NVQ.


As of the 1st August 2016 the following changes to Trainee cards will be introduced:

  • The card will be red and clearly marked “Trainee”. Their occupation will no longer be displayed on the card.
  • The card will be valid for 5 years however this will be non-renewable.
  • Before the card is issued the candidate must register for a recognised construction related qualification
  • Like the green labourers card the operative will still need to do the touch screen test but won’t have to attend the one day health & safety course.
  • The operative will need to gain their qualification before the trainee card expires.
  • Once they have completed their training and have the qualification they can then apply and move onto a skilled CSCS card.
  • By introducing the trainee card it will allow others to clearly see that the trainee is in the process of obtaining qualifications.

So why the changes ?

Currently, Trainee Technical, Supervisory and Management (TSM) card holders mistakenly consider that SSSTS, SMSTS and NEBOSH qualifications will allow them to progress to a skilled card. This leads to frustration when they realise they cannot progress to a CSCS skilled card.
Ensuring Trainee cards are only issued to those who have registered for qualification that lead to a skilled CSCS card is seen as a practicable step towards achieving industry’s desire for a fully qualified workforce.