What is SSIP?

Safety Schemes in Procurement (SSIP) is an umbrella organisation in which members provide health and safety assessment schemes to contractors working in the supply chain to demonstrate compliance with safety practices to potential clients.


SSIP Accreditations are recognised across the UK and were designed to save contractors time when tendering for work with clients. Rather than completing several health & safety assessments for different clients, SSIP streamlined the tendering process by enabling all contractors and buyers to follow a closely related framework and reduce costs for contractors by removing the need for multiple application costs.

Why do I need SSIP?

SSIP is the recognised standard for health and safety and many companies operating in the construction industry, as well as other industries such as education and social care, require it from all subcontractors they work with. Being accredited by SMAS Worksafe will give your business access to a much larger pool of work.

Why is SSIP important?

SSIP certification is required by a large portion of buyers working in construction, education and social care. By gaining a qualification from one of the members of SSIP like SMAS Worksafe, contractors can be discovered by buyers for jobs with these expected requirements, as well as highlight their professional dedication to health & safety management.

How much does SSIP cost?

The prices will vary depending on the size of your business and how many employees you have. SMAS Worksafe SSIP certificates start from £249. See how much it would cost your business with a free quote.

What are the benefits of SSIP?

The objective of SSIP is to reduce bureaucracy and costs for both contractors and buyers. However, there are a number of other benefits for both parties listed below.

health and safety on buidling sites

Benefits for contractors:

  • A streamlined tender process
  • An advantage over competitors without the accreditation
  • Faster registration with other related pre-qualification portals to improve the range of jobs available
  • Making a more attractive business to draw in industry-leading talent

Benefits for clients:

  • A more comprehensive way of assessing potential contractors’ compliance
  • Access to the database of users to find the most appropriate companies to work with
  • Simplifies the process of determining the level of compliance through easy to interpret questions
  • Full professional supply chain management solution available

What are the requirements?

The requirements of all SSIP members are related to the core criteria. These are 14 criteria that members must achieve to become certified. These criteria include evidence of a health and safety policy, availability of competent health and safety advice and monitoring and auditing procedures. Organisations that are unable or unsure of how to evidence how they meet each of the criteria will benefit from direct contact with our assessors who will be available to offer guidance and direction when completing the application to improve your chances of success the first time.

What is the SSIP core criteria?

To gain your certificate your business must be able to show that you meet the core criteria. All SSIP member schemes will require this information from you and below you can see a breakdown of what areas you will need to meet.construction health and safety

  1. Health & Safety policy and organisation for Health & Safety
  2. Arrangements
  3. Competent advice – corporate and construction-related
  4. Training and information
  5. Individual qualifications and experience
  6. Monitoring, audit and review
  7. Workforce involvement
  8. Accident reporting and enforcement action; follow up investigation
  9. Sub-contracting /consulting procedures (if applicable)
  10. Risk assessment leading to a safe system of work
  11. Co-operating with others and coordinating your work with that of other contractors
  12. Welfare provision

Additional Construction Sector Criteria:

  1. Hazard elimination and risk control (Designers & Principal Designers only)
  2. Principal Designer duties (Principal Designers only)
  3. Supplementary Construction Industry Criteria (alignment with Common Assessment Standard)

Are SMAS Worksafe and SSIP the same thing?

SMAS Worksafe is one of the registered members of SSIP, this means we are able to accredit businesses with an SSIP certificate should they meet the required standards. Because our assessors work in alignment with the SSIP Core Criteria, being certified by SMAS will give you cross-recognition between SSIP member schemes. This means that any potential clients will more easily be able to identify your level of compliance as your question set will closely follow a universal structure, meaning they can identify your competence more clearly.

Why choose the SMAS Worksafe SSIP scheme

As one of the leading SSIP schemes in the UK with over 25,000 contractors signed up, we provide all of our members with ongoing support on their health and safety compliance and their policies through our SMAS Worksafe SSIP package.

Our assessors will provide you with a SMAS Worksafe question set that includes ten questions about your risk assessments, method statements, and your business’s health and safety policy. Once you’ve answered those questions and provided any relevant documents, we’ll assess your answers to see if your business meets the core criteria.

If it doesn’t, we’ll sit down with you and offer you guidance and advice that you can take away and apply to your business, so it eventually meets the SSIP requirements. Once your business passes our ten questions, you’ll receive a SMAS Worksafe certificate within 3-5 days which will be valid for 12 months and has the SSIP stamp of approval to show your business is eligible and operating to SSIP standards. ­

How do I register for SMAS?

If you wish to sign up to be a member of SMAS, then visit our SSIP assessment page and start your application. The full registration assessment process will only ask you the questions you need to answer, helping you get certified in the most suitable way for your business and if you’re stuck with any of the questions you can give our team of in-house assessors a call and they will help guide you through the process.

Can I gain SMAS accreditation if I’m already accredited with another SSIP scheme?

SMAS is just one SSIP certification body and works in conjunction with many of the other members to support and improve levels of health and safety conformity across the UK. For those who already hold accreditation from other member schemes such as CHAS and Constructionline, we offer a Deem to Satisfy service which can take as little as two minutes to complete.

What is an SSIP DTS?

Some clients will request SSIP from a certain member scheme. This means If your business works for more than one client, you may be asked for an SSIP certificate from 2 providers. The deem to satisfy (DTS) system allows you to do this more easily. If you already hold a valid SSIP certificate, you are able to show this to another member scheme who will then check the details and issue you a certificate for a reduced price without filling out an application form.

What does PAS 91 stand for?

PAS 91 is the Publicly Available Specification for pre-qualification questionnaires in construction-related procurement.

PAS 91 is a set of questions that contractors, suppliers and clients can ask as part of the pre-qualification process for construction work.

The SMAS Worksafe Preferred Supplier additional question set is aligned with PAS 91 and aims to provide further benefits to contractors who complete the assessment by extending the issues covered by their qualification and evidencing a dedication to health and safety compliance at work.

What is Worksafe PQQ?

As well as offering businesses SSIP, SMAS Worksafe can also give your business support in other areas such as environmental and quality management.

SMAS Worksafe PQQ Wheel

Our Worksafe PQQ package will review your environmental and quality management systems against IEMA and IRCA standards, this is visible to clients on the SMAS Worksafe Portal and may give you the edge in the fight for contracts.

Showing clients you are environmentally safe and have quality management systems is reassurance to them that they’re hiring a trustworthy business that isn’t going to cause them issues with their supply chain.

Signing up to SMAS Worksafe PQQ improves the tendering process by:

  • reducing the time taken to answer necessary questions;
  • making the information easily available to download or print off to be included in tender documents;
  • providing a framework for the questions to improve confidence that questions will be answered correctly;
  • reducing the need for multiple pre-qualification schemes to be completed; and
  • outlining the steps to good practice in completion to increase the quality of answers.

Does SSIP relate to ISO 45001?

Given that ISO 45001 is an occupational health and safety management scheme, ISO 45001 is closely related to the intention of the SSIP forum. SSIP criteria are aligned with ISO 45001 so those accredited will likely qualify for Deem to Satisfy with SSIP member schemes such as SMAS.

SMAS Worksafe Preferred Supplier is more closely aligned with the objectives of ISO 45001 in health and safety management so those who are interested in extending their compliance accreditation should consider completing the extra question set outlined in our Preferred Supplier scheme.