CIOB plans register for certified competent principal contractors

PC dutyholders must be certified competent (Image:

Institute’s Principal Contractor Competency Certification Scheme goes live in April, following successful pilot. Will Mann reports.

CIOB is to publish a principal contractor register to allow professionals to demonstrate they meet the competence requirements set out in the Building Safety Act and amended building regulations.

Candidates who have successfully completed the CIOB Principal Contractor Competency Certification Scheme (PCCCS) will be listed on the register. The scheme was developed by CIOB after the institute chaired the group which developed BSI’s PAS 8672 – Competence for Individual Principal Contractors.

Initially run as a pilot, with a full rollout planned for later in April, the CIOB PCCCS is the first scheme of its kind in construction. Dan Harmer, a Tilbury Douglas project manager, was the first industry professional to pass.

The scheme has been developed by Gerald Naylor, director of the Construction Wales Innovation Centre, who also wrote PAS 8671.

“Most professionals in our industry already have a high level of competence, and we’ve had a lot of interest in the CIOB scheme from big contractors who want to get in there first and show their clients they are taking competency seriously,” he said.

“But I think those who work at the smaller end of the industry have a lot to learn about the new PC duty holder role and they have got to learn it fairly quickly.”

Naylor added: “It makes sense to have a register that clients can rely on rather than having to individually assess every contractor they employ.”

Demonstrating competency

Last year’s amendments to the building regulations mean that, as of October 2023, anyone carrying out the new dutyholder roles of principal contractor (PC) and principal designer (PD) on construction projects must demonstrate their competence.

The changes mean that huge numbers of construction industry project managers will have to go through the competency certification process, warned Paul Nash, who chairs the CIOB’s quality advisory panel and sits on the Industry Safety Steering Group.

“We must be talking about 1,000s, possibly 10s of 1,000s,” he said. “In the CIOB membership alone, the vast majority of those are going to be project managers in contractors.

“But there can be no arguments, because we’re still seeing the consequences of poor building quality or building safety failures far too often,” he added. “We need to raise levels of competence across all building projects.”

If you are interested in finding out more about the CIOB Principal Contractor Competency Certification Scheme, please email [email protected].

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  1. Does the Building Safety Act 2022 apply to domestic extensions?

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