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Checklist for Interviewing a Nanny for Your Children

Jun 20, 2008
Interviewing a Nanny to work for you personally is time-consuming and often quite disappointing. Here are some tips on how to go about this process diligently:

1) If you are planning to meet a nanny that you have found through Craigslist, word-of-mouth, an advertisement response, or an agency, be sure to request the following information prior to the meeting: Employment History, Letters of Reference, Driving Record, Proof of Legality to work in this country along with proper identification. If all this information is in order, then schedule the meeting.

2) Bring your own application for the nanny to fill out before you. Have the nanny sign an authorization form allowing you to complete a background check for purposes of hiring. You can formulate your own questions on the application. As long as the questions are not discriminatory, this will facilitate your decision making.

3) After a personal in-depth interview, take all the information gathered and begin to check references and do all the necessary background checks. Have a sheet ready with the questions for the reference check and write down the responses.

4) If you are satisfied with the reference and background investigations, then call back the nanny to come to your home and meet your family. Let this part of the interview be more informal where there is plenty of interaction between the children and the nanny. If you are still not sure that this nanny is the right one, then set up a trial day or week to observe the nanny's skills more closely.

5) If that phase of the process goes well and the entire family feels comfortable with the nanny, then set up a meeting to review the job offer. Have an employee/employer contract available with everything you are offering stipulated: salary and deductions, schedule, overtime, vacation, holidays, sick days, duties, expectations, terms for review and salary increases and method of termination. If you require a confidentiality agreement, have this ready for your nanny so that all this can be reviewed carefully before making a job offer.

6) At the final meeting, go over one last time, the job description, what is expected and provided as well as all the agreements in place. Then sit down to sign the paperwork. Set a start date.

7) Do not assume that your work is done just because the interview process and due diligence went well. The amount of input and training you provide this nanny will have a direct relationship with the success rate of this hire. Prepare and present written guidelines and schedules for everything that you want completed so that the nanny is not just second-guessing you or pretending to be a mind reader.

8) If you are a working parent and cannot be home to spend a lot of time training, then ask the new employee to come over the weekend and spend an extra working day with you to do more training.

9) Pop over to the house unexpected, maybe during your lunch hour or come home early, to check on the nanny and see how things are going.

10) Maintain periodic review sessions to cover any problems that might be festering with either of you. Root out the problems and make the necessary adjustments as early as possible. Keep an open line of communication so that your employee/employer relationship remains healthy, strong and professional at all times.
About the Author
Marta Perrone, author of How to Find, Hire, Train and Maintain Household Help. Free report: Top 10 Mistakes Household Employers Make When Recruiting Help.
http://www.domesticpublications.com, http://domestic-connections.com, http://martaperrone.com
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