New compulsory requirements for initial ECS card applications for Fire, Emergency and Security Systems ECS occupations from January 2021

From 1st January 2021 new requirements for Fire, Emergency and Security Systems (FESS) Electrotechnical Certification Scheme (ECS) occupations will become compulsory for all new (initial) ECS card applications.  The changes taking effect from the start of next year mean that all new applicants will be required to hold a pathway-specific FESS assessment for the Electrotechnical Certification Scheme (ECS) occupation being applied for.

As reported by the ECS, the new Occupational Qualification Structure introduced by the FESS industry and leading to ECS Card recognition, is aimed at promoting higher standards and skills and advancing the standards of professionalism and competence in the sector.

Chief Executive of the Joint Industry Board (the scheme administrators), Jay Parmar, said: “The changes being brought in at the start of 2021 will take competency standards in the FESS industry to a new level of professionalism. The new pathway also recognises the differences in training, experience and qualifications for those already in the industry, which critically identifies a minimum standard for those who install and maintain fire, emergency and security systems. I am in no doubt that this will be of huge benefit to the future of the FESS workforce.”

There are now four sector disciplines recognised by the ECS in the FESS industry, which include Fire; Fire and Emergency Lighting; Security (Including Access Control, Intruder and CCTV systems), and Fire and Security. Each sector recognises three disciplines which include Systems Operative, Systems Technician and Technical Manager. In addition, the occupations of Labourer, Trainee and Apprentice are recognised by ECS.

As a representative of the FESS stakeholder group NSI welcomes this new initiative to increase levels of professionalism and competency with the fire and security industry.

Read the full story on the ECS website

Information about the full suite of cards, together with information on the pathway specific FESS assessments and details on how to apply for the ECS FESS cards from the JIB in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, is available at:


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