Today, childcare is becoming an increasingly necessity for many parents. More of us than ever need to work meaning we require the services of a carer for our child.
I can offer a little guidance when choosing a nanny for your family.
A nanny is a good choice of childcare for parents that need flexible hours and care within their own home.A nanny is an individual to whom you entrust your children (your most precious treasure) whilst you are away at work. For this reason it is essential for you to ensure you are confident your children will be safe, stimulated and happy with the nanny. This will enable you to concentrate on work knowing that your child is happy.
Things to consider when choosing your nanny
- Do they appear loving and caring?
- Do they have experience?
- Do you instinctively warm to them?
- Are they pleasant to deal with?
- Can they prove they are they reliable?
- Can they provide good references?
- How flexible are they?
- Are they able to drive?
- Do they have an up to date CRB? (A Criminal Record Bureau check).
- Can they legally work in the UK?
- Do they have up to date first aid certificates?
- What childcare qualifications do they have?
- Are you offering the use of your car?
- Will the nanny live in?
- Will the nanny drive their own car and is it suitable?
- If the nanny drives their own car you may need to pay a mileage allowance.
Before you confirm employment, arrange a trial period with your chosen nanny to ensure that your children are happy. Try and find out from your children if they are happy with the nanny by asking them to talk about the day, what they did, did they have fun, were they ever upset? What happened when they were upset etc.
Once both parties are happy you should provide your nanny with a written contract and a clear set of details explaining their hours and the duties expected of them.
Once in the role, although it may feel a little daunting, It is also important to set aside time to talk to the nanny to ensure they are happy and can talk freely with you about any concerns - don't always assume that everything is ok.
There are plenty of nanny agencies around who can help with the selection process by looking for a nanny that suits you and your family. These agencies should do many of the checks that are needed e.g. CV verifications, taking up references and a CRB check. Do check that any agency you choose offers these services. By employing a nanny you become an Employer and as such will need to be registered with HMRC (HM Revenue & Customs) and file a tax return for the nanny. Many agencies will help with the nanny payments by taking care of the nanny's tax and National Insurance
It's always worth speaking to families that the nanny has worked for before to see of they were happy with them. I would also suggest that you to visit the nanny agency if possible to ensure they are a professional and established company.
Ensure you have Employer and public liability insurance added to your house contents insurance.
Good luck - a great nanny can become a friend for life!