Driving competence

Legislation is providing a regulatory framework to deliver on safe homes for residents, much of which still needs to be refined in secondary legislation. Dame Judith Hackitt in her report recognised the importance of having competent people in place to deliver on such important outcome.

The British Standards Institute was mandated by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (now Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities- DLUHC) to deliver three important competence frameworks that would help deliver both culture change and building safety outcomes, driving up competence across the built environment sector.

PAS 8673:2022

Built environment – Competence requirements for the management of safety in residential buildings – Specification specifies competence requirements for managing safety in residential buildings and other developments incorporating residential accommodation. It also gives guidance on detailed competences and the assessment of competence. It covers competence and commitment in regard to building structures and building systems, including: building services; interaction of systems and components; operational practices necessary to maintain buildings safe for occupants; risk management; managing the golden thread of information, including other digital information; managing change, including the consequences of human behaviour; leadership, communication and planning skills; and personal commitment to ethical behaviour and professional standards.

This standard built on the framework outlined by Working Group 8 of the Competence Steering Group.

Other standards published

PAS 8673 for the occupation phase has been complemented by two other standards, also based on the core competence criteria set out in BSI Flex 8670 v3.0:

PAS 8671:2022

Built environment – Framework for competence of individual Principal Designers – Specification specifies competence thresholds that individuals are expected to meet when delivering or managing the dutyholder functions of the Principal Designer, and additional competencies for working on higher-risk buildings (HRBs). Areas of competence include: appropriate behaviour; legislative and regulatory framework for compliance; management of design work compliance; and technical framework for compliance.

PAS 8672:2022

Built environment – Framework for competence of individual Principal Contractors – Specification specifies competence requirements for the dutyholder role of Principal Contractor. It also describes specific competences common to all Principal Contractors and those which are additional for those undertaking the role on HRBs. It covers: roles and responsibilities; skills, knowledge and experience; behaviours and ethics; additional competences for higher risk buildings; and limits of competence.