How to Prudently Choose an Ideal Nanny for Your Child

How to Choose an Ideal Nanny for Your Child
Since you are entrusting your child and home to your nanny, it is vital to choose the right person for the job. If you are confused about how to find a nanny for your child, then here are some tips to help you.
AptParenting Staff
Last Updated: Mar 19, 2018
"As a single mum I have to work, so I'm grateful to have the help of a wonderful and trusted nanny like I had when I was young."
Minnie Driver
Choosing the right child care for your kid is very important. Whether you decide to put your child in a professional daycare or hire a babysitter, it is vital to make the right decision. A popular choice for many working parents is hiring a full-time nanny for their child/children. Nannies provide one-on-one child care. Some of them work part-time while others stay with the family to take care of the child. Choosing the right nanny, especially if you are doing it for the first time, can be a overwhelming task.

The nanny you hire is going to be in your house the entire day, looking after the child. This is the reason why you need someone who is the perfect fit for your family. The person you choose should connect and be compatible with the family members, especially the child. She should also be comfortable in the house and around you. If you are still clueless about choosing the ideal nanny for your child, then this AptParenting article provides some helpful tips to guide you on your way.
Tips to Choose the Best Nanny
Assess your requirements
The first thing you need to do is assess your needs, and decide what your ideal nanny should be like. Do you want a live-in nanny or one who works part-time? What special duties would you want the nanny to do other than caring for the child? Does the child have special needs? Do you want the nanny to run errands too? Do you need someone who can teach the child to read?
Couple with child
These are some of the questions that you and your partner need to figure out before you start looking for a nanny. There are some people who insist on hiring an experienced nanny, while others are fine with younger nannies who can match the energy levels of the child. It is also a good idea to figure out a budget and how much you are willing to pay, while making these decisions.
Find a nanny through friends and family
Family talking with friends
Once you have decided what you want in a potential nanny, you can start your search by asking close friends and relatives for recommendations. Even if they do not have special recommendations, they can definitely spread the word and ask their contacts for some special recommendations. You can also try advertising online or in local newspapers.
Take the agency option
Couple with agent
Nanny placement agencies and training programs are a good way of finding the right nanny for your child. These agencies make the selection process easier. They screen the candidates, and find ones that specifically meet your criteria. They also run background checks and verify the nanny's work experience before recommending them to you. Most of these agencies, however, charge quite a hefty fees. So, get ready to shell out some extra bucks while hiring a nanny.
A cost-effective option to nanny agencies are online referral services. They post listing from nannies and parents. Some of these online services offer helpful guidelines and forms along with information about taxes. For an extra charge, you can also run background checks.
Start the screening process
Woman talking on phone
Before you begin meeting prospective nannies, choose around eight to ten candidates. Speak to them on the phone. This will give you a better sense of what they can bring to the job and their level of interest and suitability. Some people also prefer to do this screening process via email. At the end of this process, you should be able to narrow down the list of candidates that you would really like to meet face-to-face.
Interview prospective nannies
Interview prospective nannies
The interview of the nannies is the most important step, and one which you should be prepared for. You should ideally conduct the interview at home with the child/children. This allows you to ascertain whether she can 'click' with the child and the family members. Introduce the candidate to your child, and watch how he/she interacts with her. Instead of asking questions which require a simple yes or no, ask behavioral questions which allow the nanny to speak and open up to you. Here is a list of interview questions that you should ask a prospective nanny.
Have you worked as a nanny before?
How was your last job like?
How do you console a crying baby?
How would you plan the activities for the day? How would you keep the child happy and engaged?
How do you feed the kids?
How do you discipline a child?
Have you ever dealt with an emergency?

If you are planning to hire a nanny for housekeeping, then you should ask questions related to this as well.
Check for compatibility and comfort
Nany and child
While conducting the interview, you need to ensure that the nanny is compatible with your family. For example, if you are a die-hard attachment parent, then a nanny who completely disregards your beliefs may not be the ideal match for you. This is the reason that the parent and the nanny should be clear about their individual child-rearing philosophies.
You and the nanny, both need to be comfortable around each other. If you are super organized while your nanny has a more laid-back attitude, then it is sure to cause some disagreements.
Check references and background
Check references and background
Once you have selected the candidate, do run background checks and ask for references. Even if these checks means dishing out a few extra dollars, remember that this is money well spent. Call up the references provided or email them. Do make sure that you ask the right questions such as, "Did she work with you or not?", "Did she work extra when the child was sick?", How did she discipline and care for the child?", and "Is she reliable and trustworthy?"
Opt for a trial run
Nanny With Happy Baby
Ask the selected candidates to do a trial run for a few days. This allows you to assess how the nanny behaves with the child, and whether or not the child warms up to her.
Once you have finalized the nanny for your child make sure the terms of your arrangement are spelled out in an employment agreement, and is signed by you and the nanny. Choosing a good nanny depends a lot on instinct. Some nannies may play by the book when you are there, and completely disregard the child when you go out. At the end of the day, you need to trust your judgment and gut to find a caring and compatible nanny who is liked and loved by all.