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Employer taking extra holiday (part time nanny)?

(25 Posts)
QTPie Thu 28-Jun-12 21:32:32

Just looking for some advice... (as a fairly "novice" nany employer - my previous nanny was slef-employed, so that was a lot easier).

Part time nanny works two half days a week. We worked out that her holiday entitlement (pro-rata for start days) was 8 half days (rounded up to that) until the start of 2013. That is fine and - as per her contract - she chooses half the dates, I choose half. She has used one of hers and agreed the other three. Looking from now until end of September, we are away for a week for the Olympics and two weeks holiday: so we are away for six half days (I have already used one half day holiday). So effectively there will be 3 (half) days that we wont need her.

Our contract states:
"The Employer can choose when the Employee takes half of her holiday entitlement, so that it can coincide with some or all of the Employer’s holiday. The Employer will give the Employee 8 week’s notice of when they are taking their holiday. If the Employer is taking more holiday than the half that the Employer can choose, then the Employee can either choose to take that as part of her choice of holiday, or can take it as unpaid leave. Alternatively the Employer can ask the Employee to make up the hours at another time."

So, as I read that (since the nanny has already allocated her leave), the extra "time off" should be taken as either:
- unpaid leave, or
- make up the hours another time.

How do people manage this in practice? The soft (very British) part of me wonders if we should just give it as additional paid leave... Do most people "make the hours up another time" (mutually agreeable?

Thanks
QT

mrswishywashy Thu 28-Jun-12 21:37:13

As the days off are already agreed I feel you can't ask her to take them unpaid or make up the hours at another time.

In all my nanny positions if the family doesn't need me then they pay and it doesn't influence my choice of days off.

I think it is something you need to discuss with nanny at next review but since the days have already being decided you can't change. However you could get her to come into the house on the days you don't need her and do batch cooking for the children, sorting toys and clothing for the children.

ceeveebee Thu 28-Jun-12 21:38:38

I have usually given a list of tasks to get on with while we are away. We both know these tasks aren't going to use up all the hours so she gets some extra paid time off in reality. For example
Sorting children's clothes, washing and ironing the next size up and storing old stuff) my two are 7.5mo twins so they are frequently going up a clothing size!)
Batch cooking for the freezer (our nanny cooks for us too occasionally)
Changing beds, washing bedding
A bit of extra cleaning eg oven / fridge (our nanny does our cleaning too - in fact she is a total star hence why I am keen to keep her happy!)

fireice Thu 28-Jun-12 21:40:09

You could ask her to do a bit of work in the house on those days eg washing and ironing the childrens clothes, will be easier for her than a regular working day?

QTPie Thu 28-Jun-12 22:19:59

Oh thank you very much! What a brilliant idea!

My nanny worked as a chef for 10 years before going into nannying - the batch cooking might be a jolly good idea! There is always some ironing too...

Thank you again.

MrAnchovy Thu 28-Jun-12 22:26:44

Where did that contract come from, because it doesn't work - it is saying that she can choose when she takes half of her holiday days, but then overriding that by saying that she can 'choose' to take them on days you specify!

The normal way it works is that the extra days are paid, and if there are duties the nanny can do that fall within her job description (laundry, tidying toy cupboard, cooking children's food for the freezer...) she does these, otherwise she has additional paid leave. You should also amend the contract deleting everything from "If the employer is taking more holiday..." unless you want to leave it working unfairly.

MrAnchovy Thu 28-Jun-12 22:29:04

Oops, cross-posted, but we are saying the same thing I think.

QTPie Thu 28-Jun-12 23:00:36

The contract was provided by the nanny agency that I used (Tinies? They are some national franchise): I presumed it was quite standard?

nannynick Thu 28-Jun-12 23:12:02

I am not sure that as a nanny I would agree to such a contract. It seems to me to be unfair to the nanny.

As others have said, if the employer takes off more time than the nanny is able to take as annual leave then the employer still pays. As a nanny I agree to an annual salary, not one which might end up being less than initialy agreed.

nanny20011 Fri 29-Jun-12 07:22:59

As a nanny i made sure when i started my new position in march that it was added into the contract about the employer taking extra days holidays that i would be paid as normal, as an employee i wouldnt mind doing say one day of batch cooking stocking up on stuff for the child etc but only child related duties. I have seen many of my nanny friends use up their holiday allowance but as the parents were able to go on many holidays they had to take it unpaid which i dont think is fair.

I get it paid at 80% by one employer, that's what is in my contract as it isn't my fault that they don't need me but they can't pay the whole thing. I don't know how it works otherwise though, I've never give across the situation of going over!

Iggly Fri 29-Jun-12 08:00:13

Agree with nannynick

I have more leave than my nanny (we work the same days obviously) and if it ends up that we don't need her I wouldn't dream of making her take unpaid leave. It's just a bonus for her (I normally use them for days off just for me without the kids.

ChitChatFlyingby Sun 01-Jul-12 11:50:10

I used to have a nanny, and that is a very unfair clause in the contact. Shame on the agency for putting that clause in!!!

Legally you can take 2 (3, 4, 5!) months off and make the nanny take leave without pay and there's nothing she can do about it - except quit! How awful.

MilkNoSugarAndAShotofWhisky Sun 01-Jul-12 14:04:43

If I'm available to work but my employers don't need me, I get paid....that's how it works! It's not my fault they do. t need me!

Blondeshavemorefun Mon 02-Jul-12 23:03:38

T recommended this as a contract????????????? shock though why im shocked as tbh they arent the best of agencies imho - note i havnt mentioned whole name so no slander lol wink

im more in shock that any nanny would agree and sign this clause tbh

in all of my contracts it says that if the employer takes more holiday then their amount then they pay the nanny in full and has time off

forevergreek Tue 03-Jul-12 18:22:49

I choose two weeks, they choose two weeks. If they decide for go away half of every month that is their choice but I still get paid . If I travel too the. I ge paid extra. Standard contract really.

Kellzie Wed 27-Mar-13 13:38:34

I a currenty faced with this problem.. I am a nanny working two days so we get 11.2 days off paid for holiday. Therefore the I choose half and the employer chooses half. Although the employer has chosen more than what she can which i thought was fine, and like some said bonus.
However she is due to go away next week so I booked to go away too with my daughter. I got to work today go be informed I now have go be in next week even though she isn't here. I think this is very unfair and has really upset me. Complete lack of respect for what I do.

pizzaqueen Wed 27-Mar-13 13:47:40

Kellzie - but isn't she paying you to be at work? If you choose half and she chooses half but the family is going away for extra holidays on top of your 11.2 days you still need to be available for work, or take it as part of your 11.2 days?

Apologies if i've misunderstood the circumstances.

OutragedFromLeeds Wed 27-Mar-13 13:51:25

This is an old thread.

pizzaqueen Wed 27-Mar-13 15:31:03

Ah sorry I should've looked at the OP date!

annh Wed 27-Mar-13 22:52:20

It's an old thread but Kellzie has posted a new problem today.

You are not automatically on holiday Kellzie because your employer is away, although if she has taken "extra" holidays in the past and not required you to work on those days, you might reasonably have assumed that you would not be needed. However, she is perfectly entitled to expect you to be available for work and do nursery duties not involving the children while she is away. Has she specified what she would like you to do - if it's doing a huge clear out of the kids' toys, batch cooking for the freezer for their meals, sorting out their outgrown clothes etc then it's perfectly legitimate.

Not sure why you feel her expecting you to turn up for work when you are being paid to do so shows a complete lack of respect for what you do hmm

cowardofthecounty Wed 27-Mar-13 23:01:41

to be honest I think Kellzie's employer is being a bit petty - a conversation should have been had before Kellzie booked her holiday so it was clear what was expected.

However I do think this convention of picking half and half works to the nanny's advantage. My nanny always picked a date not in school holidays, and then I just had to take my leave and then cover hers - so she effectively got two more weeks than she would otherwise had have. I could have had her hang around while I took leave but I would prefer to go away with my kids (or spend time with them). And it wouldn't have made sense for me to take leave when she did. And she always picked her leave after I'd booked mine weeks in advance (I've booked my Xmas holiday already this year!). So I can understand why the contract in the original OP might have been worded that way. Yes I know its not the way nannying works - but it is a perk which I don't have as an employee.

OutragedFromLeeds Wed 27-Mar-13 23:08:48

annh I know, that was who my comment was to. New problem, new thread.

coward Don't you get to choose when all your holidays are? Most people do. I fail to see how only being able to choose half of your holidays is a perk!

cowardofthecounty Thu 28-Mar-13 09:45:15

well no - I have to work around the people in my team and not everyone can be away at the same time. There are busy times when you can't go away or when cover is needed - very few people would work somewhere where holidays are completely at their discretion.

But if you were to say - you are given four-five weeks holiday that you can't choose (but at least some of the time you will value as it is a holiday!) and then another two weeks on top of that that you can choose that doesn't look so bad to me. agree that some employers won't see it like that but that's how its worked out for my nanny(s).

Seb101 Thu 28-Mar-13 13:48:26

In my opinion you should just let the nanny have some extra time off. Why would you want her to come in and do jobs when your on holiday, it seems mean to me! A nanny is unlike a normal employee, she looks after your most precious possessions. She should be a friend and a part of your family. Your in a position to say, 'thanks for all your hard work, we really appreciate what you do, here's an extra week off- enjoy! ' if she's a good nanny and your keen to keep her, it's a kind gesture to make. You don't have to of course, and as she's being paid you could insist she works all her hours. But you always get back what you give in these situations. A nanny whose employer is generous in such a situation, is likely to have a happy nanny who will give more back to the job. Maybe the week after you'll need her to swap her days or something, she doesn't have to. But she's more likely to try and accommodate your needs if she feels you've been good to her.
In all my years as a nanny I've never been asked to go in to work when family on holiday.

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