ECS Card Renewal

If you’ve acquired an ECS Card through obtaining a relevant qualification or passing an associated test, then you’ll need to ensure it remains in-date. To do this, you simply need to check the expiration date advertised on the card. ECS Cards expire every three years, and individuals will need to renew their cards accordingly.

If your card is due to expiry within three months, apply for a new card at your earliest convenience. This will ensure that your replacement card will arrive before the expiration date of your current one.

There are a range of ECS Cards available. Qualifying criteria to both obtain, and subsequently maintain these cards, are regularly updated. Therefore, when renewing this item, candidates should check there are no new standards that need to be met.  If so, these will need to be navigated before a replacement can be secured.

This article is intended to give a detailed overview of the ECS Card replacement process. Although renewing your card should be fairly simple, its worth familiarising yourself with the key information below, as this provides detail on pricing, potential membership discounts, and fast track services.

My ECS Portal

It’s essential that all applicants register for a MyECS account. This portal will enable you to comfortably navigate the card renewal process, and is also useful to keep across relevant updates, such as the changes in qualifying criteria referred to earlier. To create a MyECS account, candidates will require the following:

  1. An e-mail address.
  2. DOB and National Insurance number
  3. One of the following pieces of information: your surname, ECS card number, a relevant Health & Safety Assessment number (will usually correspond to the ECS H&S Test, the most common ECS-related safety assessment).

Once you have successful created your account, log in and ensure you get an opportunity to look through the landing pages. As well as presenting your personal details, updated qualifying criteria information and a renewal tab, the portal will also demonstrate whether your renewal application needs to be done through an ECS Partnership Organisation. Furthermore, you’ll be able to see which certification you currently hold, and the date it was obtained. This is very important, because if you passed the ECS Health & Safety Assessment more than two years ago, you will need to re-book and re-complete a test as soon as possible.  Otherwise, a renewal will not be authorised.

If you have changed your ECS occupation or JIB (Joint Industry Board) grading (for reference, ‘JIB’ is the body accountable for delivering testing standards and grading across the industry), and therefore require a different style or upgraded form of card, you should inform ECS via the portal as part of the renewal process. To complete this task, you must upload proof of your qualification, by either uploading a scan of your certification, or providing a good-quality photograph. Qualifications such as passing the latest assessment tied to bs7671 wiring regulations should be included in this provision.

Lost, damaged, or stolen card replacements

The MyECS portal also allows you to re-order a lost, damaged or stolen card, through its ECS Replacement Service. After your application has been submitted with the necessary payment supplied (more on this later), you will receive a copy of your last card with the same expiration date. So please don’t think this is a way of circumventing the renewal process! If your card has been lost, damaged and stolen, and you also believe it to be within three months of expiry, just apply for a fresh card via the normal, aforementioned renewal method.

Paying for your card

After you’ve completed all of the necessary information the MyECS portal requires within the renewal process application, the system will automatically calculate the payment owed. This should be paid via a valid debit or credit card. Instructions will be presented on how to conduct this at the point of payment.

If candidates have opted against using the digital process via an MyECS account, and have instead opted to request renewal through a paper application, a £10 (+VAT) administration charge will be applied when payment is due. Given the increasingly limited number of individuals who use this option, we have declared the paper process unworthy of specific attention. However, it should be noted that guidance on how to pay for paper submissions differs between ECS Cards, and therefore individuals using this method should consult their application documentation accordingly.

Lastly, if paying through a paper application, one should note that JIB membership discount does not apply here. All online applications will hae no additional administration charges.

Below, we highlight the costs associated with ECS cards. Note that information is also included on the price of an initial card when first applying, as well as the cost of renewals or replacements. The following information also includes pricing guidance on paper applications.

Standard Online Application Fees

Initial Card:  £40 (+VAT) Total= £48

Renewal/Replacement Card: £30 (+VAT) Total= £36

Standard Paper Application Fees

Initial Card: £40 (+VAT), plus £10 administration fee (+VAT) Total= £60

Renewal/Replacement Card: £30 (+VAT), plus £10 administration fee (+VAT) Total= £48

Information specific to those employed by JIB-affiliated companies

If you’re applying as an employee of a company affiliated to the Joint Industry Board (JIB), and making an online application, you will qualify for a partial discount. This reduction will be applied as follows:

Initial Grade Card (articulated as ‘standard’ above). This includes if you have completed a JIB registered apprenticeship and therefore have hit the qualifying criteria: FREE

Initial Card for ECS related discipline, Manager or Site Visitor (relates to one of the card ‘types’ referenced before, not the ‘standard’ ECS Card): £30 (+VAT) Total= £36

Renewal/Replacement Card: £20 (+VAT) Total= £24

The discount should automatically register when using the Employer Portal of the ECS website (liaise with your employer for more information). If using the MyECS system here, please ensure that your company has listed you as an employee on the Employer Portal (again, please link in with your employer accordingly).

Information specific to Unite the Union members

If you’re company is JIB affiliated, but also, as an individual, you are member of Unite the Union (a trade union that advances the rights, profile and skill sets of workers in a range of industries), then you will qualify for further discount. In this case, a renewal/replacement card will only be charged at £15 (+VAT, therefore £18 in total). Again, in this instance, ensure that your company has registered you on the ECS Employer Portal. You will also need to provide a photocopy of your Unite the Union membership to prove registration with them.

If you do intimate that you’re included in one of the above schemes, but fail to provide suitable evidence, the ECS will charge you the differential amount up to full cost before processing your application.

JIB Premium Service

Finally, if you are in urgent need of an ECS Card, perhaps due to originally overlooking the expiration date, JIB does provide a premium, fast track service that significantly reduces lead times. This service is conducted from their administration office in Swanley, Kent. Using this route, applicants can both apply and acquire an ECS card on the same day. However, this unsurprisingly comes at a significantly increased cost (as shown below). To set this in motion, you must call the JIB administration team in advance, and make a suitable appointment. They do not have a ‘walk-in’ system. Candidates who take advantage of this service often look to complete the standard Health, Safety & Environmental Assessment simultaneously. However, as mentioned, this is not required if this associated test has been completed within the last two years.

Prices below include options with and without the H&S Assessment. Individuals will clearly need to factor in any travel costs in addition.

Standard Card Fees

Initial ECS Card (no H&S assessment): £180 (+VAT) Total= £216

Initial ECS Card (with H&S assessment): £220 (+VAT) Total= 264

Renewal/Replacement ECS Card (no H&S assessment): £155 (+VAT) Total= £186

Renewal/Replacement ECS Card (with H&S assessment): £115 (+VAT) Total= £138

Information specific to those related to JIB-affiliated companies

The below relates to individuals employed by JIB-affiliated companies. The same definitions apply as previously referenced.

Initial ECS Grade Card (no H&S assessment): £125 (+VAT) Total= £150

Initial ECS related discipline, Manager or Site Visitor Card (no H&S assessment): £155 (+VAT) Total= £186

Initial ECS Grade Card (with H&S assessment): £165 (+VAT) Total= £198

Initial ECS related discipline, Manager or Site Visitor Card (with H&S assessment): £195 (+VAT) Total= £234

Renewal/Replacement ECS Card (no H&S assessment): £95 (+VAT) Total= £114

Renewal/Replacement ECS Card (with H&S assessment): £135 (+VAT) Total= £162

So, there you have it. A full and thorough overview of the associated processes for the renewal of an ECS Card. For any questions on this subject, refer to the ECS support page at www.ecscard.org.uk/content/renew-your-ecs-card. Alternatively, consult your course convenor or an industry professional.