WAMITAB

WAMITAB Chief Executive steps down

WAMITAB Chief Executive steps down

Following the announcement on 22nd July 2020 regarding the closer integration of WAMITAB into the Chartered Institution of Wastes Management (CIWM), we are announcing that Chris James has stepped down from his role as Chief Executive Officer of WAMITAB. Since 2017, WAMITAB has been part of the CIWM Group. CIWM Group Chief Executive Sarah Poulter will be taking forward the integration plan for the two organisations in consultation with both CIWM and WAMITAB trustee boards.
Dan Cooke, the newly-appointed Chair of the WAMITAB Board, said: “In common with most organisations, 2020 has been a challenging year, and it is important that we take steps now to consolidate our ongoing financial sustainability and resilience. The closer alignment of CIWM and WAMITAB is central to this strategy and will allow us to take advantage of opportunities for streamlining and sharing of resources and plan for some exciting opportunities as we work in collaboration. “We would like to thank Chris James for his leadership and drive over the last eight years; he has played a key role in successfully steering WAMITAB to its current position as a robust specialist awarding organisation and End-Point Assessment Organisation (EPAO). We would also like to take this opportunity to thank the outgoing Chair of WAMITAB, Rob Little, for his hard work and support during his tenure in the role.”
Chris was appointed as CEO of WAMITAB in March 2012 and has been instrumental in diversifying the organisation into new skills areas, reflecting the evolution of some of the key players in the waste and resource management sector. Over the last eight years, WAMITAB has gained a strong foothold in the parking and cleaning sectors and, in January 2018, WAMITAB was selected by the Ministry of Justice as the exclusive Awarding Organisation for cleaning, facilities management and waste management qualifications across Her Majesty’s Prison Service establishments in England and Wales. WAMITAB has also been approved to deliver End-Point Assessment for several apprenticeship standards in waste, cleaning and related areas. Chris James was made a Fellow of the CIWM in June 2020 in recognition of his work at WAMITAB and his wider contribution to the sector. Reflecting on his time at WAMITAB,
Chris James said: “It’s been a great honour to head up the team at WAMITAB, and I am incredibly proud of what we have achieved over the last eight years. I am confident that I leave behind a strong foundation for the future growth of the awarding body offer within the new combined organisation. I am looking forward to working with CIWM and WAMITAB in a consultative capacity to support future strands of activity around educational development and quality assurance.”
Notes to Editors:

1. CIWM is the leading professional body for the resource and waste management sector representing around 5,700 individuals in the UK, Ireland and overseas. Established in 1898, CIWM is a non-profit making organisation, dedicated to the promotion of professional competence amongst waste managers. CIWM seeks to raise standards for those working in and with the sector by producing best practice guidance, developing educational and training initiatives, and providing information on key waste-related issues. More information can be found at www.ciwm.co.uk

2. WAMITAB is a specialist awarding organisation and charity that works directly with industry to shape and deliver employer-led qualifications for those working in cleaning, street cleansing, facilities management, resource management and recycling and parking from operative through to management level. With over 120 qualification pathways and 70 quality assured centres, WAMITAB offers an unrivalled specialist network to support employee development and is dedicated to delivering industry-relevant qualifications and support. WAMITAB is approved as an End-Point Assessment Organisation (EPAO) for the following apprenticeship standards: Level 2 Healthcare Cleaning Operative; Level 2 Metal Recycling General Operative; Level 2 Waste Resource Operative; Level 3 Facilities Management Supervisor and Level 3 S.H.E. Technician. More information can be found at www.wamitab.org.uk

Integration plan announced for CIWM and WAMITAB
The Chartered Institution of Wastes Management (CIWM) is announcing today (22 July 2020) the integration of WAMITAB, the awarding body for qualifications in the resources and waste sector, cleaning, facilities management and parking, more closely into CIWM.

WAMITAB was established (as the Waste Management Industry Training & Advisory Board) in 1989 by CIWM and other waste sector trade bodies. Solely owned by CIWM since 2017, it is a not-for-profit body with charitable status and its own Board of Trustees. WAMITAB develops and awards qualifications for site and facility operators across the UK to demonstrate competence in line with the sector’s regulatory and permitting regime. It also develops and awards qualifications for those working in cleaning and street cleansing, facilities management and parking.

As the professional body for the resources and waste sector, CIWM is focused on providing a high-quality professional membership experience, from thought leadership on legislation and policy issues, through to knowledge-sharing, networking and mentoring opportunities for members to enhance individual development. In these challenging times, CIWM’s strategy has been to strengthen its focus on developing new and enhanced member services, as well as taking steps to ensure ongoing commercial sustainability and resilience of the whole organisation. The closer integration of WAMITAB into CIWM is part of this strategy and the CIWM Trustee Board has approved a plan to ensure this is delivered in a timely and cost-effective way.

In the initial stage of the integration, WAMITAB will continue to operate as now across all its client sectors, with its own governance structure but with some streamlining and sharing of resources. As work develops to more closely align the operation and future strategies of both organisations, CIWM will be consulting and communicating fully with staff, members, learners and training providers, and other stakeholders.


WALES UPDATE – Friday 17th July 2020 – Waste Sites
Some of NRWs Regulatory Decisions (RD) have been extended as outlined below.

  • The storage of Waste at Permitted Waste Sites – will be reviewed on or before 30th September 2020
  • Technical Competent Manager Attendance and Continued Competence - will be reviewed on or before 30th September 2020
  • Providing signatures on waste documentation during the Coronavirus pandemic - will be reviewed on or before 1st September 2020
These RDs are available on NRW website, which is updated as things change.

These Regulatory Decisions apply to Wales only.


WAMITAB approved as End-Point Assessment Organisation for Healthcare Cleaning Operative apprenticeship
WAMITAB are delighted to announce they have been approved by the Education Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) to offer End-Point Assessment for the new Level 2 Healthcare Cleaning Operative.

The Healthcare Cleaning Apprenticeship was approved in February 2020 and has been welcomed by key industry bodies: the Association for Healthcare Cleaning Professionals (AHCP), Cleaning and Support Services Association (CSSA), the British Cleaning Council and WAMITAB who have played an active role in its development.

The apprenticeship is the only standard with a direct focus on cleaning and so will be important for the cleaning industry, who play an integral role in keeping buildings clean and combating the spread of infections such as COVID 19. It will help meet the significant demand for apprenticeships in the NHS and healthcare sector; the NHS Apprenticeship Levy is worth some £200m and could be used to address critical skills needs across the UK health system.

The Standard, with an allocated funding band of £4000, will support those working in healthcare environments that require greater attention to safety and infection control. This includes a range of both public and private sector environments such NHS hospitals, private hospitals and care homes (nursing and residential). This Standard may also be suitable for some GP practices, first aid facilities, community health centres, educational establishments and leisure facilities where their cleaning operatives have a broad cleaning role. The 12-month apprenticeship involves responsibility for routine and non-routine cleaning, including detailed cleaning and rapid response cleaning to a hygienic standard of cleanliness set by organisational and policy guidelines.

An employer group, including healthcare employers, with support from trade unions, universities, education, awarding organisations and a number of industry associations, has been working on the development of the healthcare cleaning standard since 2019. WAMITAB and the AHCP actively supported the employer group, led by the CSSA member, Exclusive Cleaning.

Chris James, CEO at WAMITAB, said:

“From the outset, WAMITAB Trustees committed to support the development of the Healthcare Cleaning Operative apprenticeship standard. It was crucial that WAMITAB, industry partners and Government stood shoulder to shoulder to develop and support its introduction. I strongly believe that at this pivotal point in UK history, no other apprenticeship could be more appropriate to the needs of society than healthcare cleaning.”


Delia Cannings, National Lead for Education & Training at AHCP, said:

“I believe that the specialist work undertaken by healthcare cleaning teams requires professional acknowledgement. The new standard embeds the fundamental principles of cleaning as a science, whilst embracing the very essence of the risk assessment factors. The attention drawn to the cleaning industry during the current COVID-19 pandemic makes the timing perfect for the introduction of this apprenticeship, which facilitates the development of skills and knowledge; measures effectiveness and supports efficient service delivery.”


In its role as the End-point Assessment Organisation (EPAO), WAMITAB will provide apprentices, employers and training providers with support and guidance from the beginning of their programme. A range of materials will be provided to help prepare apprentices for their assessments such as example assessment materials and suggested reading lists to aid revision for the knowledge test.

In addition, WAMITAB are developing a Level 2 qualification which will align with the knowledge requirements of the Healthcare Cleaning Operative Apprenticeship. This qualification will be supported with a full training package, including workbooks, which could be used as part of the portfolio of evidence. Two of WAMITAB’s regulated qualifications: Level 1 Award in Cleaning Principles and the Level 1 Award in the Principles of Infection Prevention and Control, come with a complete package of training and assessment materials and could be offered outside of the Apprenticeship Levy funding to support the delivery of underpinning knowledge elements.

For further information about the Healthcare Cleaning Operative apprenticeship please email epa@wamitab.org.uk

More information here


WAMITAB Office News
The WAMITAB office will be open three days each week: Monday, Wednesday and Friday, with a reduced number of staff onsite.

There will be a limited telephone service on these days, if no reply please leave a message and someone will get back to you as soon as possible.

Email enquiries will continue to be answered in the usual way:

  • info.admin@wamitab.org.uk - to be used for all general enquiries (not covered by the information listed below)
  • quartzadmin@wamitab.org.uk – to be used for enquiries relating to registrations, exams, results, certificates and quartz user issues.
  • qualifications@wamitab.org.uk – to be used for enquiries relating to quality assurance, EQA visits and portfolio sampling.
  • csaf@wamitab.org.uk – to be used for applications for additional qualification and staff approvals.


Revision Guide orders will be processed and despatched on Monday, Wednesday and Friday until further notice.


Latest guidance from the Environment Agency – Continuing Competence – 17 June 2020
The Environment Agency (EA) have provided the following guidance:

TCM attendance during COVID-19 restrictions

  • We understand that many operators will be concerned about how they can satisfy attendance requirements whilst sites are running on reduced staffing levels and staff may well be ill or self-isolating. We will be pragmatic in our approach.
  • There is still a requirement to have a technically competent person as a requirement of the permit.
  • The TCM attendance hours are within the guidance on GOV.UK and they are an indication that site activities are in being overseen by a technically competent manager.
  • Where the TCM is self-isolating or sick and cannot attend the site. The operator should be able and capable of operating the plant or site safely through both their EMS and operations training.

Operators should:

  • Review their training and capability structure to ensure roles, responsibilities and accident plans are in place and reviewed to ensure that they are fit for purpose.
  • Ensure that remote systems are operational. Alarms systems where required, are fully operational.
  • Have a responsive duty roster to respond to incidents.
  • Notify us where the site cannot be safely monitored.
  • Record if their nominated TCM(s) are self-isolating in the site diary.

Difficulties in taking Continuing Competence tests

Pearson VUE test centres are now open but not operating at full capacity due to the requirement to comply with social distancing guidelines. The EA will not regard the failure to complete and pass any of the assessments in the circumstances listed below as being a failure to comply with the CIWM/WAMITAB Operator Competence scheme until 30 September 2020; where:

  • under a new permit, an operator is required to gain an Environmental Permit Operators Certificate (EPOC) or 4 specified units of a primary qualification within 4 weeks of permitted activities commencing
  • under a new permit, an operator benefitting from the period of grace provisions cannot be assessed for their primary qualification within 12 months of their permitted activities commencing,
  • a continuing competence assessment becomes due after 16 March 2020.
If any of these scenarios apply at your site then you should contact your local environment compliance officer as soon as possible.

UPDATE: Wednesday 17th June 2020 from Natural Resources Wales
This guidance applies to Wales only.

Natural Resources Wales (NRW) - Regulatory Decision (RD) guidance on Technical Competent Management is provided below:

Continued Technical Competence

Pearson VUE test centres are now open but not operating at full capacity due to the requirement to comply with social distancing guidelines. In these circumstances, NRW will not regard the failure to complete a continuing competence assessment that became due after 16 March 2020 as being a failure to comply with the CIWM/WAMITAB Operator Competence scheme.

There will be a requirement to demonstrate you have registered with WAMITAB to undertake this test. If this applies to you or your TCM, please contact both NRW and WAMITAB as soon as possible to let us know. WAMITAB are keeping a log of those who have contacted them. NRW will be checking this list.

Where an application for a permit is made and continued competence was due after 16 March, we won’t take that as a failure to prove technical competence and we will determine the application as per normal.

There will be a requirement to demonstrate you have registered with WAMITAB to undertake this test and already have the relevant primary qualifications that align with the type of facility you are making an application for.

Where a permit already exists and obtaining continued competence is not possible. The details will be noted on a compliance assessment report, scored but that score held in suspension.

There is the risk to the operator who fails to achieve continued competence following lifting of restrictions on gaining qualification that that operator will be in breach of the permit or this may delay permit issue. In this instance the operator will be expected to provide replacement TCM cover to remain compliant.

This Regulatory Decision will be reviewed by 1 September 2020.

Full details about technical competence and site attendance are available on the Natural Resources Wales website


Continuing Competence Test Centres Open from today – 1st June 2020

Some Pearson VUE-owned and operated test centres are available for testing in the UK.

  • England: capacity showing at all active test sites in England during June 2020, however, not all centres are currently open. Candidates are advised to check availability and to book their exams at the earliest opportunity.
  • Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland: availability is limited where restrictions/lockdown rules are still in place or extended. Refer to previous specific guidance for Wales here.
Please note: availability is limited at this time because social distancing guidelines are being followed. You are advised to log in to your online candidate profile to search for a variety of dates and locations to schedule your exam.

All candidates whose Continuing Competence expired after 16 March 2020 and the implementation of lockdown resulting in the closure of the Pearson VUE test centres must schedule their test as soon as possible. The Environment Agency has given a deadline of Tuesday 30 June 2020, by which date they expect all candidates in England to have passed the Continuing Competence test.

Key points to remember:
  • You will be asked to acknowledge that you meet health requirements specified on the Pearson VUE website and that you will follow health and safety guidelines at the test centre.
  • You must bring and wear your own face mask whilst you are at the test centre and throughout your exam. Any surgical or cloth face mask, including a homemade face mask, is acceptable as long as your nose and mouth are fully covered.
  • Candidates without a face mask will be denied testing services. Face masks will not be provided to candidates at the test centre.
  • Stay at least 2 metres away from other people in the waiting area and during the admissions process.
  • Candidates are permitted to wear disposable gloves during testing; these will be inspected by the test administrators before and after the exam. Gloves will be disposed of in front of the proctor upon completion of the test.
  • Some regional test centres may require candidates to provide a temperature check upon arrival.
  • It is your responsibility to ensure there are no travel restrictions in place for the location where you want to take your test. If you travel to test in another country with travel restrictions in place, you may be turned away.
  • Please note if you exhibit symptoms upon arrival at the test centre, you may be asked to reschedule your exam for another time when in full health.
Pearson VUE test centres have put the following health and safety measures in place:
  • Hand sanitiser available in the waiting area and prior to entering the testing room
  • Increased cleaning and disinfecting regimes in between all testing appointments
  • Tissues available to candidates upon arrival at the test centre
  • Permit candidates to wear disposable gloves if they choose
  • Reminders to candidates to wash their hands or utilise hand sanitiser upon arrival at the test centre
  • Enforcement of social distancing recommendations

Opportunity to get involved in the new Healthcare Cleaning Operative Apprenticeship

WAMITAB are looking for Assessors and Quality Assurers who have experience of cleaning in a healthcare environment to work with us on the new Healthcare Cleaning Operative Apprenticeship, which was approved for delivery in February 2020.



The Healthcare Cleaning Operative could be working in any establishment that has to clean to a healthcare standard, such as a hospital, care home, medical facility or leisure facility.

There will be assessment opportunities available from early 2021 with the potential for paid assessment development work before then. Training and on-boarding for Assessors and Quality Assurers will happen late in 2020 but we are eager to engage with assessment and quality assurance professionals early as this is sure to be an Apprenticeship with high demand.

The Assessment Plan and Occupational Standard can be found here.

Please send your expressions of interest to EPA@WAMITAB.org.uk


LATEST UPDATE from Natural Resources Wales – Friday 1st May 2020
This guidance applies to Wales only.

Regulatory Decision (RD) guidance on Technical Competent Management is provided below:

Technical Competent Manager attendance during COVID-19 restrictions

We understand that many operators will be concerned about how they can satisfy attendance requirements whilst sites are running on reduced staffing levels and staff may well be ill or self-isolating. We will be pragmatic in our approach.

  • There is still a requirement to have a technically competent person as a requirement of the permit.
  • The TCM attendance hours are within the guidance on GOV.UK and they are an indication that site activities are in being overseen by a technically competent manager.
Operators should:

  • Review their training and capability structure to ensure roles, responsibilities and accident plans are in place and reviewed to ensure that they are fit for purpose.
  • Ensure that remote systems are operational. Alarm systems where required, are fully operational.
  • Have a responsive duty roster to respond to incidents.
  • Notify us where the site cannot be safely monitored.
  • Where the TCM (s) is self-isolating and not sick, every effort should be made to attempt “virtual” support to the site through teleconferencing or video links. This input, duration and method of communication must be recorded in the site diary.
  • Where the TCM is unable to support communications in self-isolation or is sick every effort should be made to identify a suitable replacement TCM. Record if their current nominated TCM(s) are self-isolating/sick in the site diary.
  • Where the TCM is self-isolating or sick (and cannot attend the site) and no TCM cover available. The operator should be able and capable of operating the plant or site safely through both their EMS and operations training using other competent staff for the short time the TCM is unavailable.
Where there has been an inability to make alternative arrangements and a breach of the permit condition occurs then NRW will record the breach on a CAR report and suspend the score.

The following will only apply to an operator who currently complies with the primary qualification and continued competence requirements prior to 16th March 2020.

Continued Technical Competence

In view of Pearson VUE test centres now being closed, Continuing Competence tests are not currently available and until the current Government’s advice changes, we will not regard the failure to complete a continuing competence assessment that became due after 16 March 2020 as being a failure to comply with the CIWM/WAMITAB Operator Competence scheme. There will be a requirement to demonstrate you have registered with WAMITAB to undertake this test. If this applies to you or your TCM, please contact both NRW and WAMITAB as soon as possible to let us know. WAMITAB are keeping a log of those who have contacted them. NRW will be checking this list.

Where an application for a permit is made and continued competence was due after 16 March, we won’t take that as a failure to prove technical competence and we will determine the application as per normal. There will be a requirement to demonstrate you have registered with WAMITAB to undertake this test and already have the relevant primary qualifications that align with the type of facility you are making an application for.

It is expected that your test is re-booked as soon as the centres re-open.

Where a permit already exists and obtaining continued competence is not possible. The details will be noted on a compliance assessment report, scored but that score held in suspension.

There is the risk to the operator who fails to achieve continued competence following lifting of restrictions on gaining qualification that that operator will be in breach of the permit or this may delay permit issue. In this instance the operator will be expected to provide replacement TCM cover to remain compliant.

Environmental Permitting Operator Certificate (EPOC)

Where an operator is relying on the EPOC for permit application or for lower tier risk sites (per WAMITAB tiers). The inability to provide the EPOC for qualification for new permit application or low tier risk sites will not prevent permit application processing. NRW will continue to process permit applications without the EPOCs providing the applicant is registered with an intent to complete the EPOC.

There will a requirement to demonstrate that you have registered with the Chartered Institution of Wastes Management (CIWM) and that you provide this proof on a permit application. NRW will check validity with CIWM.

Operator will have to endeavour to resolve this as soon as possible following availability of EPOC Courses.

There is the risk to the applicant that if a permit is issued and the applicant fails to achieve the EPOC qualification following lifting of restrictions that that operator will be in breach of the permit.