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First AP - agency or AP World?

(5 Posts)
coorong Fri 17-Jun-11 16:41:50

We need an au pair starting September (I'm doing a PGCE). I'm worried about getting an AP "cold" from Aupair World. I put my profile on, someone responds, then what? Do you have to pay for the premium service?
I read the recent thread (first AP help) which was useful, but I think I'm starting from scratch. No one I know locally has an AP - we're south east of Manchester - so I haven't a local knowledge to call on.
I realise AP can be good or bad irrespective of the agency.

catepilarr Fri 17-Jun-11 17:15:12

paying for the membership means you can see the ap's contact details and send them an email or give them a call /not recommended without agreing to it first, it tends to give them a fright ;)/. ap's usually dont pay for the membership so cant contact you apart from sending you a ' green thumb' but ton or putting you onto their favourite list.

maidbloke Fri 17-Jun-11 22:25:22

Had great success with AP World. But it takes time and effort to begin getting to know potential APs. I guess that's what you pay an agency to avoid.....but no guarantees that you won't get a dud from them either.

It's worth the hard work IMHO. You'll be more sure you're getting someone that will fit in - and when they arrive you'll already know each other a little.

BelladiMamma Fri 17-Jun-11 22:42:25

I have recently hired a new AP (Aussie is going home because sick) and I used greataupair, APW and also an agency based near Sevenoaks. Despite the fact that I loved all the choice, fastmatch features etc on both sites, I only found 1 serious candidate from each source. This is despite having had 135 applicants from APW (WTF?!). I hired the one which came thru an agency because she had 1) checkable references 2) a greater understanding of the role required and 3) better English than the other applicants.

Our Aussie AP came thru greataupair, but it took us 3 months from the point of job offer to her arriving as she had put her profile up before even starting the visa process.

The websites could do more to give guidance on what candidates should do to prepare themselves before even posting CV's answering vacancies etc.

I know that agencies are more expensive, and I was surprised that it was the agency that had the best candidates, but this particular one obviously bothers to tell the AP's what they need to get sorted before applying.

Having said all that, I would do the same again, eg 1 off line agency, 2 online sources, gives you all the best options IMO.

RoseMT Sat 18-Jun-11 08:12:24

I used APW - got hundreds of responses - but found Gumtree better actually... lots of local people, so it's easier to meet them in person.

A lot, admittedly, wanted live-out but a very good selection looking for live-in.

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