It’s hard when you realize it’s time to go back to work to leave your children in the care of another. You need a nanny to take care of them, but finding the right person can be daunting. These three practices will put you on the right path to you remembering this choice as one of the best decisions you ever made.
Knowing that you need a nanny is easy. The important part, however, is to know what kind of nanny you need. Take some time to think about what kind of upbringing you want your children to have. Do you want them to be the type of children who stay inside all day doing art projects or who walk to their park and ride their bike through canyon trails? Do you want your nanny reflect your disciplinarian values or are you looking to provide your children with an older brother/sister for the summer?
Some people prefer to dole out punishments and rewards in their own time, to maintain the position of authority. Others would rather employ a stricter figure so that their time with their children is entirely fun. Neither choice is wrong. You simply have to know what is right for you.
2. Ask around
Talk to anyone and everyone you know who has employed a nanny. At this stage, you’re not looking for any personal referrals, you’re simply getting insight into what has worked for others. Ask about what they liked about their nanny, what they did well, what the fruits of the experience were. Keep in mind, this is not just someone who is taking care of you children while you are working. This is someone who is shaping the children you will be parenting and living with for years. Know what has worked well for others.
Conversely, find out what didn’t work and why. Was it the nanny at fault or was the schedule disruptive? Were the children not in a place to be receptive to someone new or was the nanny given too much authority? Maybe not enough? You want to understand what the employer’s expectations were and what the personality type of the nanny was. None of this will tell you what to do or to whom you should turn. It will simply lay the foundation for a sense of authority that will inform your intuition as you move forward.
3. Plan it out
Take some time and decide what days you need covered. This will help you start with the priority, which is planning your children’s lives. The consideration for how they spend their time can be mapped out now. How many days a week should they focus on getting out and getting activity? What’s the ideal way for your children’s lives to unfold, in what manner would provide the greatest stability? At this time, you may quickly realize whether or not you need a live-in nanny or someone who shows up at your door in time to make breakfast. Maybe you only need someone to pick your children up from school. These considerations will allow you to plan what you will be spending on insurance, whether or not they will be using your car, and what you will be able to afford to pay your nanny.
You can check this online calculator for what the going rate is for nannies in you zip code. It also takes into account how many kids you have and their years of experience. Factor in the anecdotal evidence given by the people you have already spoken to, as well. After all, nothing can depreciate first-hand experience. Once you have an idea of what that average should be, add anywhere from 15% to 20%. After all, finding the right candidate is a long process that you don’t want to start over if your nanny is vetted by someone who is willing to piggyback on your hard work by offering just a bit more.
Once you know what you want, reach out to a staffing service to find the best candidate possible. J. Danielle & Co. has been leading domestic staffing for ten years, placing the perfect nanny in the right household every time the need has arisen. Click here to find out what they can do for you.