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Career Advice

What PPE do you need when you arrive on-site?

Firstly, what is PPE? PPE is equipment that will protect the user against health and safety risks at work.  It can include safety helmets and hard hats, gloves, eye protection, high-visibility clothing, safety footwear and safety harnesses.

It’s important that you ask the company or your recruitment agency contact what PPE is required for your first day on site. All construction sites, as a minimum, will require you to wear the following:

  • Safety footwear (steel toe-capped boots or shoes)
  • High viz vest or jacket
  • Hard hat

Some sites will have a 5-point PPE standard which is:

  • Safety footwear (steel toe-capped boots or shoes)
  • High viz vest or jacket
  • Hard hat
  • Hand protection i.e. safety gloves
  • Safety glasses or goggles

There will also be some sites that will require you to wear RPE (Respiratory Protective Equipment), meaning that you must wear a safety mask at all times or in certain areas of the site.

The standard of the RPE equipment will be decided by the contractor that you are working for but every mask must be Face Fit Tested! Face Fit Testing is an important process that ensures your mask fits your face correctly. If you are required to wear RPE for your job, make sure that you speak with your Site Manager and confirm what action you need to take.

How to obtain a CSCS Labourer (Green) Card

You must hold a valid CSCS card to gain access and work on all major construction sites across the UK. If you are new or returning to the construction industry, contact your local ITS office to find out if they are partnering with any local training providers providing support or free CSCS courses in your area.

Steps to get your CSCS card

Book test

Use the official CITB booking website to initially book your touch screen CSCS Health, Safety & Environment test: or call the booking line on 0344 994 4488. The test cost is £22.50.


Once you have passed the test, you must have a CSCS-approved qualification to apply for a card. Visit the CSCS website to see if you hold one of their required qualifications

Qualification arrangement

If you don’t have the required qualification, you should speak with your local job centre, college or training provider to arrange this. (This course takes one day)


Once you have the qualification, you can apply on the CSCS website

Interview Advice

Preparing for an interview

  • Ensure that you know the date, time and address.
  • Establish how you will make your way to the interview. For example check the parking options and if you are using public transport make sure that you have checked train or bus times and locations.
  • Know exactly what type of interview it is. For example do you need to bring any examples of previous work or do you need to prepare a presentation?
  • Research the company. Take the time to look at their website and better understand the business; What type of work do they carry out? How long have they been trading? How many offices do they have?
  • Prepare a list of questions and topics that you wish to discuss. You want to ensure that you leave the interview fully aware of the specifics of the role you are applying for.
  • Anticipate common interview questions and practice your answers with friends or family.
  • Make sure you have prepared what you are wearing and don’t leave this to the last minute!

During the interview

  • First impressions are key. Greet your interviewer with confidence and a handshake.
  • Listen carefully to every question and answer them with certainty.
  • Body language is essential- come across as assured and relaxed. If you don’t look interested the chances are you won’t get the job.
  • Be optimistic and don’t give any negative feedback about your previous employer.
  • Before the interview finishes ensure that you are satisfied that you have asked all of your prepared questions and leave with a much better understanding of the company and the role.
  • As it wraps up thank them for their time and close with another handshake.

After the interview

  • If you have interviewed via a recruitment agency ensure that you swiftly provide them with your feedback.
  • If you have any further questions post-interview send a polite and well-worded email to the company or via the recruitment consultant.
  • If you receive positive news and have been invited for a second interview or have been offered the role then great news! If the news isn’t so positive use this as a learning experience to help you in the future.