What is it?
A new checking system has been launched by the Joint Industry Board (JIB) that enables clients and contractors to authenticate the skills of electricians.
The new Electronic Certification Scheme (ECS) Check is an online portal that provides information of an ECS cardholder that is due to work on site. The portal is also a beneficial platform that electrical contractors can utilise to showcase their own staff skills profile during tenders or projects.
The purpose of the website is to give clients full confidence that projects are being carried out by qualified and professional electrical tradesman.
Who can register on the scheme?
Currently, eligible ECS cardholders who are qualified to NVQ level 3 and the current BS7671 Wiring Regulations are due to be notified about the opportunity to register to become an ECS Registered Electrician. All those wishing to do so, must enrol to a Code of Professional Practice, which includes a commitment to Continuing Professional Development.
How do you register?
Existing ECS gold card holders can upgrade their card to include Registered Electrician status. It is also easy to upgrade when you renew your card. All you will need to do is prove you are qualified in the latest wiring regulations as well as sign up to a professional code of conduct.
If you do not currently hold an ECS card you can make an application as normal and the card will be issued.
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Why has the scheme been launched?
One of the main reasons behind the ECS card scheme is down to public perception and contractor’s awareness of untrained and under qualified tradesmen on site. Paying customers and contractors want to know they are dealing with professional electricians who are qualified in the areas they say they are, so the work carried out complies with all health and safety regulations.
They key difference between the normal Gold Card and new Registered Electrician card is the need to hold the latest wiring regulations. As such the new scheme is designed to highlight the fact that the installer is qualified with the latest regulations.
Once a personal card has been issued, an electricians profile will automatically be updated on the ECS Check for contractors and customers to view. The intention is to build a national database or qualified electricians which can be easily verified online.
How can you check if an electrician is registered?
If employers want to utilise the site, they can use the Employer Portal to find out if an individual is registered. They should also be able to use the employer portal to allocate skilled electricians to specific jobs. This can be crucial for an electrical company because until now, a client has never been able to visibly access the make-up of a workforce.
Another added benefit for both an employer and client is that whilst a job is taking place, both can access Real Time information from site access as well as audits.
Ultimately, the new ECS Check system is an added bonus to the ECS Card. Once you have completed the full application process and entered your full information onto the MyECS profile you will have a tangible card and you will automatically be linked to the online portal which customers and clients can view. If you’re an employer there seems to be more to utilise on the system in terms of applying for contracts and going through the tender process with clients, then there’s the added ability to view jobs during the Real Time process.
The new service has been rolled out across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, for more information on ECS Check visit here.
If you’re an electrician and want an ECS Card, the price is from £60 upwards and can be purchase online.