Making the decision to hire a nanny to help with childcare is never an easy one. There are no rights or wrongs, other than what you feel is right for your family, but how do you choose that special person that will share the responsibility of caring for your children? How do you foster a working relationship that will benefit everyone in the family? How do you take care of all the security checks? Feeling bamboozled? We have some great advice from Care.com‘s Nanny Expert Rosemary Albone.
Norland-educated Rosemary Albone, a nanny with more than 20 years’ experience in childcare and early years education and training has joined UK care website Care.com, the support hub for today’s families seeking carers, to be the company’s exclusive advisor. Rosemary considers the relationship between the parent and child minder of supreme importance and her pairing with Care.com means she will be able to offer exclusive, expert guidance and advice to those seeking care for their child. Here, Rosemary gives us her 12 top tips for hiring and sharing the care of your children with a Nanny:
- Find the ‘right fit’ for your situation and don’t compare yourself unfavourably with other family’s choices about their childcare provision; whatever works for you and your children is right. The default ‘one size fits all’ is never applicable where families are concerned
- Give yourself a good amount of time before actually needing your Nanny to get recruiting. Hiring in panic mode is not helpful
- Use a reputable recruitment channel, such as Care.com, to help you in your search. They provide excellent support throughout the whole journey of hiring and working with nannies and other childcarers
- Recruit safely using all the checks available on Care.com and trust your instinct. The person who you choose to share the care of your child or children with must be someone you feel ‘right’ with. Don’t ignore any indicators that tell you this person is not right for you
- Be clear and confident about your expectations and boundaries from the start and express them clearly by talking to your nanny and writing it all down for them. It takes time but pays dividends
- Give everyone time to settle in once your nanny is hired, including yourself, your partner and your children. Adapting to a new dynamic can take a little time
- Agree on regular times to have a catch up chat with your nanny to talk about the children and as importantly, to check out how they feel working with your family is going for them. Interest in your nanny as a person is crucial if you want to get to know them and you want them to stay
Enjoy being a Mum. Having other people share in the care of your children does not mean that you are any less of a parent. You will always be your child’s number one person
- Enjoy the interaction that your nanny has with your children. If they are able to get the children off to sleep quicker than you or get them to tidy their rooms- so what? Sharing these things with your nanny isn’t a competitive thing!
- If you are concerned about anything, then talk to your nanny straight away. Don’t let issues build up into something unresolvable. Children will pick up the tension and react
- Make sure that the legal stuff is always sorted including paying your nanny on time
- Keep specific times as family time only, and stick to them. Spending regular undisturbed time with your children is critical and gives your nanny time to themselves to recharge and refresh
If you have questions for Rosemary, you’ll be pleased to hear that she will be a regular expert blogger, posting advice and information for Care.com UK. The material will include tips on subjects including questions to ask when looking for care, how to write a job description for your nanny, how to approach tipping and gift buying, and what is considered appropriate pay.
For more information please visit: www.care.com