You are here: Construction Design & Management Regulations 2007

The Objectives of CDM 2007:

The Construction Design and Management Regulations 2007 came into force on 6th April 2007.
They replaced the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 1994 and the Construction (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1996, combining them into one single legislative package.
The principal objective of these regulations, and the supporting Approved Code of Practice, is to reduce the incidence of construction accidents and ill health. They are intended to focus attention on the planning and management of construction projects, from design concept onwards.
The aim is for health and safety considerations to be treated as an essential, but normal part of a projects development – NOT as an afterthought or “bolt-on” extra.

The main objectives were:

► To simplify the Regulations and improve clarity.
the intention was they should make it easier for duty holders to know what is expected from them;

► To maximise their flexibility.
the regulations needed to work across the vast range of contractual arrangements;

► They want people to focus on Planning and Management – NOT the Plan and other paperwork.
they emphasise the use of active management and effective risk control and discourage the use of endless paper chases and unread plans;

► Strengthen the requirements on co-operation and co-ordination.
to encourage better integration, particularly between designers and contractors, so they can share problems and find solutions to them before they materialise on site;

► Simplify competence assessment, reduce bureaucracy and raise standards.

The Key Aims of CDM 2007:

► Have the right people for the right job at the right time.
to manage risks on site, reduce paperwork and encourage teamwork.

► Ensure people appointed are competent to do the work.

► Reduce bureaucracy and paperwork.

► Focus on the effective planning and management of risk.

CDM 2007 Approved Code of Practise

Paragraph 4 states:

The effort devoted to planning and managing health and safety should be in proportion to the risks and complexity associated with the project.
When deciding what you need to do to comply with the regulations, your focus should always be on the action necessary to reduce and manage risks.
Any paperwork produced should help with communication and risk management.
Paperwork which adds little to the management of risk is a waste of effort, and can be a dangerous distraction from the real business of risk reduction and management. 

The Structure of CDM 2007:

The Regulations are divided into 5 Parts:

► Part 1: Introduction.
Deals with matters of interpretation and application.

► Part 2: General management duties applying to all construction projects.
Covers general management duties which apply to all construction projects, including those which are not notifiable.

► Part 3: Additional duties where projects are notifiable.
Sets out additional management duties which apply to projects above the notification threshold. These additional duties require particular appointments or particular documents which will assist with the management of Health and Safety from concept to completion.

► Part 4: Worksite health and safety requirements.
Applies to construction work carried out on construction sites, and covers physical safeguards which need to be provided to prevent danger. Duties to achieve these standards are held by the contractors who actually carry out the work. Duties are also held by those who do not do construction work themselves, but control the way in which the work is done.
Contractors must not allow work to start or continue unless the necessary safeguards are in place.

► Part 5: General.
Covers issues of civil liability; transitional provisions which apply during the period when the regulations came into force, and amendments and revocations of other legislation.
The Regulations are also supported by an Approved Code of Practice (ACoP)

Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007.

ISBN 978 0 7176 6223 4
This publication, in my opinion, is a must for all design office libraries.
As “Designers” you should be most concerned with Part’s 2 and 3 of the regulations which cover the following:

CDM Regulations 2007 : PART 2

General Management Duties Applying to ALL Construction Projects.

The Regulations are.

► Regulation 4 – Competence

► Regulation 5 - Co-operation

► Regulation 6 - Co-ordination

► Regulation 7 - General Principals of Prevention

► Regulation 8 - Election by Clients

► Regulation 9 - Clients Duty in Relation to Arrangements for Managing Projects

► Regulation 10 - Clients Duty in Relation to Information

► Regulation 11 - Duties of Designers

► Regulation 12 - Designs prepared outiside of Great Britain

► Regulation 13 - Duties of Contractors

NOTE: These regulations apply whether or NOT the project is Notifiable:

CDM Regulations 2007 : PART 3

Additional Duties where the Project is Notifiable.

The Regulations are.

► Regulation 14 - Appointments by the Client

► Regulation 15 - Client’s Duties in Relation to Information

► Regulation 16 - Client’s Duties in Relation to the Start of the Construction Phase

► Regulation 17 - Clients Duty in Relation to the Health and Safety File

► Regulation 18 - Additional Duties of Designers

► Regulation 19 - Additional Duties of Contractors

► Regulation 20 - General Duties of CDM Co-ordinators

► Regulation 21 - Notification of Project by the CDM Co-ordinator

► Regulation 22 - Duties of the Principal Contractor

The Trigger for Appointments:

There are two types of project under the CDM 2007, Notifiable projects and Non-notifiable projects.

Notifiable projects are notifiable to the HSE by way of the F10 Notification and require the appointment of additional duty holders and the duties in Part 3 of the Regulations

Except where the project is for a *domestic client, the HSE must be notified of projects where construction work is expected to:

► Last more than 30 working days;

► involve more than 500 person days, ie. 50 people working for over 10 days.

All days on which construction work takes place count towards the period of construction work. Holidays and weekends do not count if no construction work takes place on these days.

Regulation 2 -. Interpretation:

*Domestic clients are people who have work done on their own home or the home of a family member that does not relate to a trade or business. It is the type of client that matters, not the type of property. Local authorities, housing associations, charities, landlords and other businesses may own domestic property, but they are not domestic clients. If the work is in connection with the furtherance of a business attached to domestic premises, such as a shop, the client is not a domestic client.

Notifiable Projects:

Require the appointment of additional duty holders and duties, and these Appointments have to be made in writing by the Client.
There has to be:

► A CDM Co-ordinator (CDM-C)

► A Principal Contractor

► A Construction Phase Plan

► A Health and Safety File

The Health and Safety File has to be compiled and handed over to the Client at the end of the project, this is the responsibility of the CDM Co-ordinator. The Client has a responsibility to ensure that the information in the Health and Safety File is:

► Kept available for inspection by any person who may need it.

► Revised as often as may be appropriate to incorporate any relevant new information.

► If they dispose of their entire interest in the structure, should deliver the Health and Safety File to the person who acquires their interest in it and ensure that they are aware of the nature and purpose of the File.

The Role of the Client under CDM 2007:

CDM 2007 recognises the influence that Clients can have over the health and safety of their project, and It’s aim is to:

► Make Clients accountable for the impact they have on health and safety.
ƒ The client should make sure things are done; they are not expected to do them themselves.

► They should appoint and use a CDM co-ordinator to advise and co-ordinate activities on notifiable projects.
ƒ Those clients without construction expertise should rely on the CDM-C’s advice on how best to meet their duties, but the CDM-C will need the client’s support and input to be able to carry out their work effectively.

Client Duties on ALL Projects:
Client’s have a duty to:

► Check competence and resources of those they appoint.

► Allow sufficient time and resources to allow the project to be delivered safely. ƒ Unrealistic deadlines and a failure to allocate sufficient funds are two of the largest contributors to poor control of risk on site. Clients should consult with the design team and the Principal Contractor, to find out how much time will be needed for the planning and preparation before work is expected to start.

► Provide key information to designers and contractors.
ƒ it is the clients responsibility to arrange for any gaps in the information to be filled, for example commissioning asbestos surveys, site investigations etc.

► Ensure that all those involved in the work co-operate and co-ordinate their activities. ƒ On Notifiable projects, the Client would appoint the CDM Co-ordinator who would make sure this happens.
► Establish a competent project team early on which fosters a culture of co-operation and integration.

► Ensure suitable management arrangements are in place. .
ƒ The type and level of checks needed depends on the work being undertaken and the risks involved.

► Ensure adequate welfare facilities are on site before the start of work.

► Ensure workplaces are designed correctly.
ƒ a design for a workplace should comply with the Workplace (Health, Safety & Welfare) Regulations 1992

There are additional duties imposed upon a Client when the project is Notifiable and these include:

► They must Appoint a competent CDM Co-ordinator.
The CDM Co-ordinator has to be able to demonstrate their competence as set down in Appendix 4 of the ACoP and have a key part to play throughout the life of the project.
It is the CDM Co-ordinators job to advise and assist the Client with their duties, and to co-ordinate the arrangements for Health and Safety during the planning stage. The CDM Co-ordinator Should therefore, be appointed as soon as practicable after initial design work has begun.

► Appoint a competent Principal Contractor to plan and manage the construction work.
As already mentioned, for Notifiable projects where no CDM Co-ordinator or Principal Contractor is appointed the Client will be deemed to be the CDM Co-ordinator & / or Principal Contractor and therefore, subject to their duties.

► Provide the CDM Co-ordinator with key information.
As with all projects, it’s the Clients responsibility to arrange for any gaps in information to be filled. This includes information such as:
ƒ Any existing records and plans including any Health and Safety Files for existing structures affected by the works.
ƒ The Location and status (if known) of existing overhead and buried services and utilities (water, electricity, gas, pumping mains, pressure systems, etc.)
ƒ Any existing ground investigation reports relating to the site.
ƒ Any asbestos surveys / reports for any existing buildings involved in the proposed works.
ƒ Any Client imposed site requirements such as;
ƒ Any special access arrangements and segregation of workplace.
ƒ Security arrangements for adjacent premises.
ƒ Days or hours when works, or limited works, are permitted, not permitted or restricted.
ƒ Any site requirements from statutory bodies or adjacent owners.
ƒ Any restrictions on noise, vibration and other environmental nuisances.
The CDM Co-ordinator will then ensure all who need this information will receive it, normally via the Pre Construction Information Pack. 

► Ensure the construction phase does not start unless; ƒ There are suitable welfare facilities provided
ƒ A Construction phase health and safety plan is in place prior to the commencement of work on site.

After the construction phase is completed the client must:

► Retain and provide access to the health and safety file and revise it with any new information.

Client Summary:

To sum up the Clients role:

► The Duties are on all clients, unless they are a genuine domestic client

► Clients have significant influence over the health and safety of construction projects

► Clients must Ensure that all those involved in the construction project are competent

► Clients must Ensure the construction team focuses on effective planning and management of risk and actively drive out wasteful bureaucracy

► The client must provide the right information to the right people at the right time

► The key advisor to clients for notifiable projects is the CDM co-ordinator

► Clients and CDM co-ordinators are not required to supervise construction work on site


The Role of the Designer under CDM 2007:

Designers are in a unique position to reduce the risks that arise during construction work, and have a key role to play in CDM2007.
Designers' responsibilities extend beyond the construction phase of a project. They also need to consider the health and safety of those who will maintain, repair, clean, refurbish and eventually remove or demolish all or part of a structure as well as the health and safety of users of workplaces.
If you design or specify building work, then you are a designer with duties under CDM 2007 Designers include people who prepare:
• Drawings
• Design details, analysis and calculations
• Specifications and Bills of Quantities
The design could be on paper, computer or verbal
Designers Duties apply to all projects, including non-notifiable and domestic projects.  Designers include:



Civil and structural engineers

► Building services engineers

► Those specifying or purchasing materials

► Temporary works designers

Interior fit out designers

► Clients who specify

Design and build contractors

► Statutory bodies that require features that are not statutory requirements.
However, statutory requirements are exempted. For example, Building Regulation requirements are not classed as designs under CDM 2007

Overseas Designers:

Where the design work is undertaken by oversees designers, the designers duties under CDM 2007 fall on:

► Person who commissions the work if in GB
► The client for the work

Designers Duties for all Projects:

Designers have to:
► Ensure clients are aware of their duties
A designer should not commence work on a project, particularly a Notifiable project, until they are satisfied the Client are aware of their duties under the CDM Regulations. In the case of a Notifiable project, this means making sure the Client has appointed a CDM Co-ordinator before detailed design work begins.

► Make sure you are competent for the work you do
Do you satisfy the core criteria for competency as detailed in Appendix 4 of the ACoP? You must be aware that The HSE are expecting us to provide proof of competency. Competency checks are something the CDM Co-ordinator would carry out on behalf of the Client Construction

► Co-ordinate your work with others as necessary to manage risk
Hold regular design team meetings, talk to other members of the design team. Don’t be selective about who you issue information too, if issuing information to someone on the design team it may be useful to others, even if they haven’t requested it yet, let them decide if they need it. In today’s world of emails and electronic prints it’s just as easy to issue to the whole team, including the CDM-C, and not just to those who request it.

► Avoid foreseeable risks, So far as is reasonably practicable by:
• Eliminating hazards from the construction, cleaning, maintenance, and proposed use (workplace only) & demolition of a structure
• Reduce risks from any remaining hazard
• Give collective risk reduction measures priority over individual measures

► Take account of the Workplace (Health, Safety & Welfare) Regulations 1992 when designing a workplace structure

► Provide information with the design to assist clients, other designers, & contractors. In particular – inform others of significant or unusual/ “not obvious” residual risks

Additional duties of the Designer when a project is Notifiable:

► Check that the client has appointed a CDM co-ordinator
Only ‘initial’ design work is permitted until a CDM co-ordinator has been appointed. Initial design can be considered to be no more than work within and beyond RIBA Stage C*; or equivalent activities in other forms of appointment or guidance.

► Co-operate with the CDM co-ordinator, principal contractors and with other designers or contractors

► Provide the relevant information to the CDM Co-ordinator for the health and safety file

► Designers have to be given relevant information by the CDM co-ordinator
Don’t forget to ask who the CDM-C is and ask the CDM-C for a copy of the Pre Construction Information. The CDM-C should be contacting you as the designer asking for information for the Pre Construction Information Pack, but you should be asking who they are if you’ve not been contacted. Remember your duty to inform the Client of their duties.

► Risks which are not foreseeable do not need to be considered
This is a strange one………..just remember, you’re not expected to have a crystal ball, if you consider risk throughout the design process you should be ok.

► CDM 2007 does not require “zero risk” designs

► The Amount of effort made to eliminate hazards should be proportionate to the risk

The HSE’s Expectations of Designers:

According to the HSE, The Key problems with designers under CDM 1994 was a ‘lack’ of understanding of what was expected and a proliferation of paper work that branded CDM as inefficient and ineffective. This has been addressed under CDM 2007 and so have the HSE’s Expectations of Designers.

► Apply the ERIC principals
Eliminate, Reduce, Inform, Control
The “C” stands for control. This will normally apply to contractors and not to designers. Designers seldom have control on site to reduce the risk – that is a role of the contractor.

Designers can:
► Eliminate hazards
• By experience
• By red amber green lists (optional)
• By challenging existing practice
Just because that’s the way it’s been done in the past, it’s not necessarily the safest or best way.
• By talking and listening to contractors
• By complying with Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992
Complex paper systems are not required or desirable. Focus on reducing risk by design and making a difference. Good designers have always eliminated hazards.

► Reduce remaining risks by
• Collective measures
• Individual measures
• Inform others
• Provide relevant information to the project team: other designers, the CDM coordinator, and contractors • In particular: highlight significant, “not obvious” risks, & those that are difficult to manage.
It is essential that designers provide clear & concise information about any residual risks of their design, to those who need to know. For example, Other members of the design team, Principal Contractors, subcontractors and especially any specialist subcontractors.

This information, on notifiable projects, would normally be passed to the CDM Co-ordinator for inclusion in the Pre Construction Information Pack 
Be careful not to overload with trivial & obvious risk information.

Others need to know about any risks likely to arise from the design that will affect their work.
Particularly the non-obvious risks. Some risks may be difficult to manage, and will require more effort than others, these should be identified. If you are not sure of what may be relevant then. you should discuss it with the contractors and ask what is relevant to them.

Designers Information :

► Provide the right information to the right people at the right time
There is no “right or wrong” way for designers to provide information to others. It will depend upon what the information is, and to whom it is being addressed.

How to inform:
Methods of providing information is optional. The important thing is that the information gets to those who need it.
• Notes on drawings
Notes on drawings are good, but will the person who will end up using the drawing be able to understand them in that format?
• Written information with the design
• Suggested sequence of construction (only if not obvious)
Providing a sequence of construction may assist others.
• If in doubt – discuss it
The information should be project specific, and concentrate on the significant risks.

Designers Paperwork :

The message from HSE is they don’t expect designer risk assessments to be done. If they are done it is because they are of benefit to the design process. Designer risk assessments should not be done simply to satisfy the CDM co-ordinator or Inspectors. The objective of CDM is to reduce risk on site - NOT to feed a system with paper.

► Eliminate hazards and reduce risks – manage the risk, not paperwork.

► Don’t produce copious amounts of paperwork detailing generic hazards and risks
The HSE don’t want paper kept for them, they want designers to reduce risk.
ƒ Designers under CDM 2007 are not legally required to keep records of the design process.
However, Brief records of why key decisions were made will be helpful when designs are passed to another, to prevent decisions being reversed for the wrong reasons

Designers Design Review :

Don’t confuse Design Risk Assessments with a Design Review. A Design Review is a process of co-ordination. It should allow the design team to critically analyse the design to ensure that it is suitable.

► A design review will help to ensure buildability, usability, & maintainability
It should allow the design team to critically analyse the design to ensure that it is suitable.

► Designers should involve the contractor when reviewing buildability
And should

► Involve the client (or building operators) when reviewing usability and maintainability
This should help to ensure that the the client gets what is required, but also that issues of health and safety are addressed and resolved at the design stage.

► Involve the CDM co-ordinator if project is notifiable

Designers “Do Not:

► Have to control risk on site
- they can only influence what is within their control

► Design for possible future uses of structures that cannot reasonably be anticipated from their design brief

► Specify construction methods, except where the design requires a particular construction sequence

► Exercise a health and safety management function over contractors or others

► Have to consider trivial risks

Designers - Key Messages:

If you design or specify building work, then you are a designer with new duties under CDM 2007

► Competent designers eliminate hazards and reduce risks
manage the risk, not the paperwork

► Design for the safety and health for those that build, use, maintain and demolish it’s safer by design

► Tell others about significant risks which remain give the right information to the right people at the right time

Competency / Co-operation and Co-ordination


Levels of Competence:

– 2 levels of competence have been identified:

Normal Projects.
Larger or more complex projects, or ones with high or unusual risks.
Appendix 4 and Appendix 5 of the ACoP detail criteria for demonstration of competence.

What is Competence?
The definition of Competence according to The ACoP is:

To be competent, an organisation or individual must have:
► Sufficient knowledge of the specific tasks to be undertaken and the risks which the work will entail;
► Sufficient experience and ability to carry out their duties in relation to the project; to recognise their limitations and take appropriate action in order to prevent harm to those carrying out construction work, or those affected by the work

Competence – What does CDM 2007 Require?:

Regulation 4(1) states that No person shall:

► Appoint a CDM Co-ordinator, Designer, Principal Contractor or Contractor unless they have taken reasonable steps to ensure….
► Accept an appointment unless they are….
► Arrange for or instruct a worker to carry out or manage design or construction work unless the worker is…..
Competent, or Under the supervision of a competent person.

The Core Criteria is set out in the CDM 2007 ACoP Appendix 4 and was agreed between industry & the HSE

Key Questions:
► “Are we capable of taking on this commission?”:
ƒ What knowledge, experience and ability are required?.
ƒ Have we got that knowledge, experience and ability?
ƒ What evidence will we provide to demonstrate that we are competent?

The HSE are expecting us to supply evidence of our competency to Clients.

Individual Competency of Designers

Designers must be able to :
► Identify hazards, understand how they can be eliminated, and address residual risk

► Design in accordance with the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992

► Identify significant remaining risks

► Inform contractors

► Co-operate and co-ordinate with the Principal CContractor

Co-operation and Co-ordination:

What does this mean as far as the regulations are concerned?
The ACoP Refers to Co-operation & Co-ordination as the:
► Key to the successful management of construction health and safety.

► Only meaningful if members of the project team are appointed early enough to allow them to contribute to risk reduction.

► Recommends early appointment of those involved with design to make a full contribution to risk reduction during the planning stage.

So what does this mean for Designers?
► A more managed approach will be necessary for larger projects: There will need to be

► An integrated team involving designers, principal contractor and other relevant contractors

There will probably be the need to
► Appoint a lead designer, where many designers are involved
This would normally be the Architect, but on larger projects it could be the Project Manager that takes on this responsibility.

► Agree a common approach to risk reduction during design throughout the design team

► Hold regular meetings of the design team (including the CDM co-ordinator) with contractors, and others for the review of developing designs
Site visits should be encouraged, so you can see how risks are managed on site and vice versa.


Further Reading:

Managing Health and Safety in Construction.
Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007.
ISBN 978 0 7176 6223 4
Design Risk Management
Advice for designers on the implications of the Construction (Design and Management)
Regulations 2007.
Association for Project Safety
RIBA Publishing ISBN 978 1 85946 275 1
CDM2007 – Workplace “in use” guidance for designers
CIRIA publication C663
ISBN 978 0 86017 663 3
CDM2007 – Construction work sector guidance for designers
CIRIA publication C662
ISBN 978 0 86017 662 6

Paper written by:  Jill Thompson JTConsulting. - Architectural Design

To find a list of CDM coordinators who cover your local area click here.