Wednesday, December 7, 2011

10 Steps to Hiring the Perfect Nanny

Hiring the perfect nanny doesn’t need to be as daunting as it may appear at first. For one thing, “perfect” is relative; no two families will define their ideal candidate in exactly the same way. So it’s helpful to outline some things beforehand and to follow what we feel are some sensible steps. Here we will offer 10 steps to hiring the perfect nanny for your family:

  1. List – Make a list of all of the responsibilities your nanny will need to meet. Then list those qualities and skills you feel will be most important for your ideal candidates to have in order to meet them. Write down any questions you would have for your nanny candidates.
  2. Consult – It’s a good idea to consult professional nanny agencies. There are other options for finding a nanny, some of which will work just fine. We recommend working through agencies for several reasons: they will have experienced candidates available; agencies require their nannies to agree to at least a one-year commitment; much of the work, like background checks and screening will have already been done; an agency can work with you to match the right nanny with you and your family.
  3. Evaluate – Once you have a list of potential candidates, make evaluations, using the list you’ve put together as a guide, to decide which candidates most closely match your needs and priorities.
  4. Phone Interviews – The phone interview is simply a pre-screening opportunity to get a few particulars from the candidates, and to discuss the job and its requirements. Stick to the outline you’ve laid out in step 1, regarding job requirements and qualifications.
  5. In-Person Interviews – By now, you should have pared your candidates down to no more than 2 or three applicants. Whether at home or at a neutral location, now is also the time to go over the questionnaire you’ve compiled in step 1.
  6. Introduction – You may choose to incorporate this into the previous step, as an actual working interview. Here, your prospective nanny meets your children in order to get a feel for the right chemistry.
  7. Check References – At this point, ideally, you will have a very good feel for which candidate is the best fit. When contacting references, confirm their relationship with the applicant. They should be past employers, agencies she has worked for or someone who is familiar with her is a professional capacity (not family members). Let them know that you are considering hiring her.
  8. Offer the Job – You can now draw up a contract, which will be a conditional offer of employment, pending the results of a background check. The contract should cover the job in detail: hours, salary and other benefits, paid time off, overtime, etc. Once you have agreed to all terms, as spelled out in this working agreement, on to the next step …
  9. Background Check – There are numerous agencies, third parties and websites that offer to do background checks for you. Be certain to employ a method that will verify all of her previous addresses, employers and any aliases. A background check should include her driving record, and a criminal background check that includes sex offender registries for all states and jurisdictions in which she has lived and/or worked. This is an area where using an agency pays off.
  10. Break-in Period – If you’d prefer to call this a probationary period instead, be sure to make that clear to your new-hire as a condition of permanent employment. This is a time for your nanny to experience the job itself, under typical conditions, during normal work hours; and perform those duties for which she was hired.
Taken From Hire a Nanny


  1. Hi all...

    A Perfect Nanny, is to understand, and meet the needs of today's diversified and ever changing families. You believe there is no more important relationship than the one between a family and their Nanny and we are committed to providing Nannies who will enrich, educate and honor the lives of the children in their care.
    Nanny Agencies In LA

  2. Thanks for your interest in this blog.