Common Assessment Standard Deadline Arrives

As of June 27, 2024, the Common Assessment Standard — which can be achieved by completing the CHAS Elite assessment—is being specified for pre-qualifying suppliers for works contracts within the public sector in line with guidance set out in the latest Procurement Policy Note (PPN) 03/24.

 Understanding the Common Assessment Standard (CHAS Elite) is essential for health and safety consultants, whether this is to support contractors with the accreditation process or to help clients to specify the scheme for their supply chains.

Five things to know about the Common Assessment Standard

It saves time and money

Five years since its inception, the Common Assessment Standard (CHAS Elite) has set the industry on track for more streamlined prequalification, replacing multiple systems with a single comprehensive questionnaire encompassing a broad range of risks from sustainability to financial performance. This initiative, spearheaded by Build UK and CECA, was designed to enable buying clients to set a single standard for their supply chains streamlining pre-qualification and alleviating the need for contractors to engage with multiple schemes, saving time and money for both parties. Moreover, its data-sharing agreement facilitates accessibility across assessment providers, further enhancing efficiency.

It is now being specified in the public sector

The Crown Commercial Service (CCS) already asks for contractors appointed to its seven-year framework to hold the Common Assessment Standard and the Construction Leadership Council (CLC) supports the scheme. As of June 2024, the Common Assessment Standard (CHAS Elite) is now specified for public sector projects, per the updated Procurement Policy Note (PPN) 03/24 issued by the Cabinet Office in March 2024. Contractors looking to work with the public sector must attain the Common Assessment Standard (CHAS Elite) accreditation by this deadline.

The private sector is also embracing the scheme

Specifying the Common Assessment Standard enables companies to simplify their prequalification processes while monitoring compliance data across a broad range of risks. Its therefore no surprise that an ever-growing number of organisations using the Common Assessment Standard for their supply chains in the private sector, including Balfour Beatty, Costain, Mace, Multiplex, Skanska and Sir Robert McAlpine, to name a few. It also means a vast range of opportunities await contractors who attain the accreditation. Keep up to date with who is specifying the standard here:

Buying clients can use it to set a single standard for their supply chain

Because the Common Assessment Standard (CHAS Elite) covers 13 areas of risk management it enables clients to manage multiple risks via a single assessment. Clients can also be safe in the knowledge that the standard is regularly reviewed and updated by the industry to ensure it remains relevant and current. Clients can search for contractors who are accredited to CAS by trade and location via the free-of-charge CHAS Client portal. 

Its accessible for SMEs

There are two levels of certification for the Common Assessment Standard (CHAS Elite): desktop and site-based. Companies apply to a Recognised Assessment Body, like CHAS,for the certification level that is appropriate for their business based on factors such as trade, size and the requirements of their clients. For companies that employ fewer than 10 employees and have a turnover below £1.8 million or a balance sheet total less than £1.8 million, the assessment standard will be applied in a proportionate way.

Support is available for consultants transitioning contractors to the Common Assessment Standard (CHAS Elite)

CHAS offers expert guidance and customisable packages to ease the process of transitioning to the Common Assessment Standard (CHAS Elite) including a bespoke offering for consultants. With fast assessment turnaround times and a track record of exceptional customer service—we won our fifth consecutive Feefo customer service award in 2024 – CHAS is ready to support consultants to help customers to swiftly achieve the new standard.

For more information on qualifying or specifying the standard, or to join the CHAS consultant program, visit or call 0345 521 9111.