Should I Take SMSTS Course Or SSSTS Course?
Both are about health and safety on a construction site, and both are qualifications, introduced by the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) in 2002 as part of the UK government’s policy of increasing health and safety awareness on sites. But a lot of people ask “what exactly is the difference?”, and which course should you take – SMSTS Training or SSSTS training?
The Site Management Safety Training Scheme (SMSTS)
This is a course designed for managers in construction who are responsible for managing a workforce within the construction industry. Our course is held over 5 days and is classroom based. It is suitable for any manager, whether experienced or not, and is widely seen as a way to improve health and safety experience and to get you up the ladder professionally or for you to acquire a new managerial job. You pass the SMSTS course if you are successful with the exam and the SMSTS course is a combination of case studies, group and individual exercises and presentations.
The subject matter covers The Health and Safety at Work Act, CDM Regulations 2015, Site set-up, Risk assessments/method statements, Recent changes in accepted working practices, Behavioural safety, Management of Occupational Health. When you pass you will be given the SMSTS card which lasts for 5 years you will need a SMSTS refresher Course before it runs out.
The Site Supervisor Safety Training Scheme (SSSTS)
Our SSSTS course is help over 2 days and is designed for first appointment supervisors or those candidates looking to take up a first management role in construction. The SSSTS course is classroom based and aims to explain the importance of effective risk assessments, the need for control measures, legal responsibilities and adherence to recent codes of practice, Investigate events which led, or may have led to injury, Have an appreciation of the legal reporting system, Understand the monitoring and recording systems required, Be able to prepare formal reports, Be able to make logical proposals to prevent further occurrences, The definition of an accident and the main causes of them, The need of a structured investigation procedure, The principals of accident investigation using HS(G)245, The reporting of injuries, diseases and dangerous occurrences (RIDDOR), Near miss investigation, Practical experience of investigation through scenario accidents, There is a multiple choice exam and the successful candidates will receive a SSSTS card that they can use to show employers they they have the qualification. This will last for 5 years then you will need to take a SSSTS refresher course before it runs out.
Once passed the supervisor is able to progress to a Level 3 NVQ in construction site supervision.
The content covered in the courses is different between SSSTS course and SMSTS course qualifications. The content on the SSSTS course is about increasing understanding and awareness for new managers. The key aim is to understand the need for good practice and what good practice is. SMSTS course is very focused on law, regulatory requirements and specific good practice as outlined by the Health and Safety Executive. Another key difference between SSSTS course and SMSTS course is the next step. The managers need the SMSTS card to fulfill their role. The people achieving the SSSTS card status use the qualification to progress to a Level 3 NVQ and then, when promoted, the SMSTS itself.
With over 60 deaths a year in the UK construction industry there is an increasing need for better management and supervision in health and safety and this requires managers and supervisors to achieve identifiable qualifications.
What SSSTS jobs are out there in Cambridge?
Many employers in the UK construction industry require you to have SSSTS certificate before they will hire you for any role that involves supervising others on site.
SSSTS jobs include:
- Site Foreman
- Team Leader
Here are some links to the many job agencies advertising SSSTS jobs and SMSTS jobs in Cambridge and the surrounding ares:
Remember higher level jobs such as Site Manager would require the more detailed SMSTS card training.
Why is the SSSTS course important?
Anyone who supervises others on a construction site is expected to make sure they do their jobs in a safe as possible in a efficient manor. Keeping your workers safe is a challenge on a modern worksite, and without the latest safety and hazard awareness training you won’t really be up to the task. UKCG (The United Kingdom Contractors Group) recognises the SSSTS course as meeting its standards for every supervisor role on a UKCG site.
How many Supervisor jobs require a SSSTS certificate?
Virtually all of them. The SSSTS has become the industry standard across the UK for supervisor safety training. Most employers, won’t hire you without an SSSTS card
Why do employers prefer Employees with a SSSTS certificate?
Simply put, untrained supervisors cause accidents and cost them both time and money. the skills you learn in the SSSTS course make you a better supervisor or team leader. Employers know that a certified supervisor understands the legal standards that their workers and the company must live up to, how to spot and deal with risks and hazards on site, and how to ensure that their workers develop good safety habits. That is why organisations and businesses will only hire supervisors who are SSSTS certified.
How long does this SSSTS certificate last?
Your certification is valid for five years. Every five years thereafter, you will have to take a 1 day SSSTS refresher course on SSSTS issues before you can re-certify, and receive your new SSSTS card. The refresher training will largely be a repeat of the material you covered in your initial SSSTS course class, but the details and presentation will be updated.
If you are already working as a supervisor
An NVQ Diploma is best suited to those who are already well established in a supervisory position in construction, such as a Supervisor or an Assistant Site Manager, and are working towards earning their Gold (Supervisor’s) CSCS card.