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Hiring a Nanny is essential to working parents, but the fear of leaving your most prized possession with a stranger is even more worrying. What should parents look for when hiring a Nanny? Elite Childcare Agencies Top Tips for hiring a Nanny.
1. Using an Agency:
Many Nanny Agencies have wonderful websites which appear to address all the necessary vetting procedures; however which agencies actually explain their recruitment process. Don’t be afraid to ask about the agency's recruitment process or even pose as a potential candidate and see how you are received by the agency. Does their actual recruitment process match their written policy? If you’re not happy with one agency don’t be afraid to change agencies, although many agencies ask for a deposit (as security) which you may not get refunded if you find a Nanny with a different agency.
2. Allow Time to find the perfect Nanny for the job:
Allow up to 3mths to find your Nanny. Many Nanny Agencies will inundate you with potential candidates CV’s, of which many may be unsuitable. Have a clear Job description written down and stick to it, and carry out a check list for each candidate against each requirement of the job, if they only meet 1 or 2 requirements then discard their application. Finding the right candidate takes time so doesn’t be in a rush.
3. Interviewing a Nanny:
Always interview a Candidate with your partner or friend, so you can compare notes afterwards. As you both will have noticed different things throughout the interview. Before the interview make sure you have a copy of the candidate’s CV/ application form. Read through their CV and highlight areas of concern or the area you require more information on. Write down a series of questions before the interview, this way if you get chatting or feel nervous you will have a clear format. As in any interview, How does the candidate present themselves, are they on time for the interview. Take notes during the interview.
4. Checking References
All Nanny Agencies will or should have checked the candidate’s references prior to them sending the candidates’s CV/ application to you. As a general rule of thumb candidates nominate referees who will say the best about them, however this may not be a true reflection of the candidate. Do not be afraid to call previous employers to find out more information about the candidate.
5. Checking Qualifications/ Visas.
Every Nanny Agency is responsible for checking the candidates Qualifications in regards to the position. As a parent you should ask to see the original qualifications. If you’re not familiar with the qualification ask the Candidate to explain what was involved in gaining the qualification. If the qualification was gained aboard, conduct an internet search to find the college/ university or contact NARIQ UK, who deal with making sure qualification gained abroad are equilivant to UK standards. Ask to see the candidates Passport and visa to make sure the candidate is entitled to work in the UK. If you are unsure of their visa restrictions contact the UK border Agency for free advice.
6. Play Date
After the interview invite your 2 best candidates for a day date with your children. This can be a half or full-day. The trial day will allow you to see how the Nanny and your children interact with each other. Try and involve the Nanny in a daily routine task, such as helping to prepare lunch, trip to the park or school run. This will enable you to observe your Nanny during a more hectic time of the day. Take note of the Nannies initiative and level of involvement. Above all remember this is a chance for the Nanny to impress you.
After successfully finding a Nanny, make sure you draw up a contract of employment between yourself and the Nanny, which you both sign.
In the contract outline
• pay and pay date (weekly, monthly) and method of payment (check or payment directly into bank account)
• No. of sick days with pay
• No. of days holiday with pay
• Hours of work, including evening babysitting
• Nannies roles and responsibilities
• Use of car
• Trial period.