A DOL card, also commonly referred to as an OSHA Card or Completion Card, is an official card that The United States Department of Labor (DOL) issues to those who have completed an authorized OSHA Outreach Training Program. Historically, OSHA Outreach Training has primarily been voluntary, with some employers recommending their staff complete the various courses. However, nowadays there are several states that have OSHA Outreach Training as a requirement for construction and general industry professionals.
If you need to take OSHA training as a job requirement, there’s a strong likelihood that you’ll be required to carry your DOL card with you while on the job site. Recently the U.S Department of Labor has given the card a big facelift, and has made it much more durable and secure. In fact, 360training.com recently became the first and only online training provider to offer the new card to students!
But we’ll get into that new card later. For now, here’s what you need to know if you’re looking to get your DOL wallet card soon.
Getting a DOL/OSHA Card
DOL card applicants can take their training with any authorized OSHA outreach training provider. Many students are electing to complete their training online for the convenience and cost effectiveness.
The training provider will then coordinate with DOL to process the card which can take up to eight weeks. For the meantime, a certificate of completion will be provided to you, which will remain valid until the official DOL card has been delivered.
Students typically have the choice of 10 or 30 hour training programs. The training they ultimately decide will depend on their role, their employer’s requirements, and their future goals. Generally, the training is broken down as follows:
- 10-hour course for entry level employees
- 30-hour course for managers.
You might be wondering, “Do people have to be employed to qualify for the training?” The quick answer is no. Although the Outreach Training Program requirements refer to workers as the target, participants of Outreach Training Program classes are not required to be employed. You can take the course and pass the test anytime to get ready for what’s up ahead.
As previously mentioned, another popular aspect of today’s outreach training programs is that students can choose to take their entire outreach training online at their own pace and preferred environment. Of course, this comes under the condition that students will still meet the total number of education hours required and pass the associated exam with a grade of 70% or higher.
In general, the online course offers a world of convenience to those who are having a hard time managing their schedule for in-person, classroom-based training sessions. If technology offers a more favorable process or solution, why not use it?
The Benefits of the ‘New’ Plastic DOL Cards
Back in February of 2016, the DOL began their transition away from paper completion cards and towards stronger, more durable plastic cards. This change is largely due to the fact that many employers now require their workers to carry their card with them while on the job, and it was clear that the paper cards were being easily ripped, lost, and left behind.
The DOL decided to roll out plastic cards that resemble a credit card in look and feel. These cards are much easier to carry and can withstand much more of the wear and tear that comes with constant handling.
Unfortunately, this change in material was not immediately accessible to online training providers, who, until recently, continued to administer paper-based completion cards to students. This has since changed.
360training.com recently became one of the few online providers of OSHA outreach training to offer students the new, durable, plastic DOL completion card in place of the traditional, flimsy, paper version.
New QR Code for Authentication and Tracking
Beyond its new look and material, the improved wallet card will also have a QR (Quick Response) code on the card for fast authentication.
The QR code will allow employers and managers to easily verify employee course completion and authenticate that the card belongs to the person holding it. The QR code can be easily scanned with a smart phone and will provide a link to the card’s authorizing OSHA OTI Education Center for that employee.
In theory, it should also reduce fraudulent incidents that have forced OSHA’s hand to upgrade to a more secure card in the first place.
What to Expect From Your OSHA/DOL Card
The plastic completion, cards will feature the student’s name, trainer’s name, date of issue, and the OSHA Training Institute center from which the card was issued. Trainer cards will include name, identification number, expiration date, and the OTI center where the trainer was authorized. Which again according to OSHA should help eliminate fraud and also the need for replacement cards.
For more information on the new plastic DOL card, simply click here.