Selecting a nanny placement agency is one of the biggest challenges parents face today. The main goal of any agency is to match families with appropriate childcare providers. A good agency will walk you through each phase of the process of hiring your nanny. The first step an agency will take in the hiring phase is to help your family clarify realistic childcare needs. To insure good communication it is important the agency understands the dynamics of employing a nanny, being a nanny and parenting. This is more than a business; it is matching families with a caregiver that will be in their homes handling the most precious and vulnerable members of their family, their children.
An agency ought to help you define your expectations, and will prepare a job description that precisely describes what your position involves and the ideal individual who would be suitable for your family. The agency will be able to advise you on childcare qualifications, appropriate pay, and benefits. An agency will either recruit specifically for you or will provide you with a list of applicants who meet your job description. As part of a thorough screening process, an agency will check references prior to you speaking with a nanny candidate. Don't hesitate to ask the agency about its screening and reference checking procedures. The nanny's profile, and list of references, should be made available to you before you interview the nanny.
How to Hire a Nanny Agency:
- Does the agency do a criminal background investigation?
A reputable agency will conduct more than a criminal background investigation and provide a copy to you as the client. A multi-state criminal and sex offender screening should be run on a nanny candidate before they enter your home to care for your children.
- How do they check references?
This is one of the most important ways to help protect families from incompetent nannies. Many agencies do not fully check references. Does the agency inform you if they have been unable to contact a reference? Ask to see copies of the agency's reference check sheets. How many questions do they ask? And what do they ask? A good agency has at least a one-page reference check sheet that asks a variety of questions.
- Does the agency provide an accounting of their in person, nanny intake interview with their impressions and insights? Do they know enough about their nannies to discuss them with you in detail?
Does the agency interview it’s nannies in person or just have them register online without ever meeting the candidate? Is the agency able to give names of possible nanny candidates without having to check their data base? A good nanny agency will provide you with an accounting of their impressions and experiences of working with a specific nanny. If this nanny is new to the agency that fact should also be provided. A reputable agency will know its nannies well enough to discuss them with a client.
- Does the agency enforce that each nanny has current certification for CPR and First Aid?
All About Nannies provides contact numbers of reputable local agencies for certification. Each nanny is given 30 days to complete the certification process if they need to update their training. Nannies with no certification cannot begin working until certification is complete.
- Does the agency charge the nanny a fee for anything?
This agency does not charge its applicants for any of the fees needed to complete their registration, screening or placement. The nannies do pay for their CPR and First Aid Certification.
- Does the agency ask for proof of licensing or certification? Examples: Nursing, Doula, Teaching, CNA, NICU Nurse or Early Childhood Ed.
A reputable agency has copies of current licensing and certificates on file for reference. The nanny candidates should bring these certificates with them for their in person family interview.
- Does the agency tell you about payroll taxes?
Providing information to the client of payroll service agencies that specialize in household employees taxes is one of the many important responsibilities of a nanny placement agency.