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Reducing my hours as a nanny

(20 Posts)
PotKettleBlk Mon 01-Apr-13 15:00:22

Im currently working as a live out nanny for a lovely family. I work mon-fri 7.30-19.30. I get on really well with them, and both they and I are flexible when necessary. However I am starting to struggle with the long hours as I also have a 30minute commute each way every day. I will soon be having my annual review and am considering asking for a slight reduction in hours. Perhaps working only until 17.30/18.00 each day so I'd have an evening(i know starting later wont really be possible) or doing a half day (preferably on a Friday but this is negotiable). They do not have set working hours.

I know I'm lucky to have a good full time position with a great family. But have any nannies asked this before and what was the outcome. And how would parents feel if their nanny asked this? And what would be your preference?

Tia

Littlefish Mon 01-Apr-13 15:18:40

Of course you can ask, but what you're asking for is a 1.5 to 2 hour reduction each day. I have to say that I wouldn't call that a "slight reduction". I think it will all depend on their working hours and needs. smile

happychappy Mon 01-Apr-13 15:28:04

You can ask but in my experience a day off is a better option. I work 4 days week. 3 days for 1 family and 1 day (so I can stay self employed) for another family. I do 10/11 hour days with no scope to reduce. So I have a day off.

nannynick Mon 01-Apr-13 15:38:03

Do you like job hunting? As that is what you may well need to start doing.

Your employer needs childcare 7:30-19:30 and you have agreed to do the job. You now want to change the hours... but does your employer want to change the hours? Is your employer even able to do so - they may not be getting home from work themselves until 7pm or later. If they work from home, or do not work at all, they may still need help with the children until some of them are in bed.

If I was an employer and if you were to ask me, I would be wondering about your long term commitment and about how much you realise that finding reliable childcare is difficult. As an employer, assuming I needed childcare 7:30-19:30 I would be actively recruting someone to replace you, as you would not be able to do the job any longer and thus are resigning.

Sure you could talk to your employer but look at why they need the childcare and if they would be able to accommodate such a request. It is quite a drop in hours... not a slight drop.

Iggly Tue 02-Apr-13 19:31:00

The 30 min commute isn't that much...

As for the hours - they will be based on your employers working hours I bet, so I reckon they won't be able to accommodate you... I not be happy it if it were me as I couldn't expect my nanny to work less without me having to cut hours.

Is going 4 days an option? What's the job market near you like?

TheSeventhHorcrux Tue 02-Apr-13 22:38:21

Unfortunately I don't think it is likely to go down well. As others have said, they are likely to have contracted you to do the hours that they need so you reducing your hours will probably dramatically affect their working day.
A 12 hour day is hard - perhaps you can perhaps discuss some way of getting a break during the day? Maybe a nursery morning a week or something? But its just par for the course really isn't it? This is coming from someone who used to work 88 hours a week over 2 nanny jobs!
flowers

Blondeshavemorefun Tue 02-Apr-13 23:40:43

If your family advertised job as 7-7 5 days a week then that is what they will need

You can by all means ask maybe to go down to 4days but doubtful to be able to finish earlier every day

If they say no would you leave?

The job market is sparse at the moment sad so think carefully

Could you stay over maybe tue and thur to cut down travelling?

pollypandemonium Tue 02-Apr-13 23:45:23

You're working a 60 hour week. Of course you can ask for a reduction. 40 hours is normal. I would suggest 4 days as suggested by others.

TheSeventhHorcrux Tue 02-Apr-13 23:47:06

A 60 hour week is normal for a FT nanny

Blondeshavemorefun Tue 02-Apr-13 23:55:27

10hr day jobs are rare

Years ago many of my jobs were 8-6

Now jobs advertised are averagely 11hrs if not 12

Nannies rarely have a 40hr week polly

pollypandemonium Wed 03-Apr-13 00:07:10

Sorry I meant that 40 hours is a normal working week in most jobs. I guess that's why nannies are usually live in.

TheSeventhHorcrux Wed 03-Apr-13 00:10:42

I got used to not having a life in the evenings. Even in my live in jobs I'd normally just go eat and then go to bed because I was so tired.

noviceoftheday Wed 03-Apr-13 04:21:10

If my nanny asked this the answer would be a very firm no. My nanny has a job because I have a job. I am able to do my job well because I am not worried about my dcs during the day, and don't have the stresses at either end of the day associated with other forms of child care. So, no, in this environment I wouldn't be agreeing to anything to accommodate my nanny that would put my own livelihood at risk. It would, quite frankly, be easier to get a new nanny.

50/60hpw is pretty average for a nanny tbh...the job market is absolute shit right now...if you go in demanding then there's a good chance you'll lose your job as it'll be easier for them to just fined a new nanny who can offer the hours they need

andrea29 Wed 03-Apr-13 10:45:55

I work 44 hours over 4 days. Yes nannies do work long hours and unfortunately you took this job knowing how many hours you going to work so I think it's a bit late now to worry about it.

There are not that many good jobs around these days.
I wouldn't ask for reduction in my hours if I were you. It would show that you are not happy with the job. I think it would completely change the relationship between you and your bosses.

You have 2 options - either hand in notice or stay in the job doing the hours you are contracted to do.

Murtette Wed 03-Apr-13 23:18:52

Surely you either employ a nanny for those hours because you are at work (or likely to be at work) for those hours and so need someone to look after your children or you have too much money & can't be bothered to look after your own children. In the former position, if a nanny couldn't cover the hours I was out, I'd have to find a replacement. In the latter position, I could consider a reduction of hours but probably wouldn't want it to be the 5.30 - 7.30 tea/bath/bed & general tiredness spell but imagine I could consider just having a nanny for 4 days or 4.5 days a week.

If they say no, what will you do? Are there many full time jobs near you at the moment? If so, are they requiring similar hours but much closer to you so you don't have to commute or are they the same distance but shorter hours?

And can you cope with a 15% pay cut?

calmlychaotic Thu 04-Apr-13 01:03:02

That's such a long day, you nannies are a hard working lot. I sympathise about you wanting an evening, you said they don't have set working hours so suppose you can only ask. Seems harsh that just asking would put your job in jeopardy. But I am not nanny or a nanny employer so guess I don't understand. Maybe a swap somewhere, a later finish one night for am early finish on a Friday, or as someone else suggested you could stay over. They might want the chance of a night out.

DoubleLifeIsALifeHalved Thu 04-Apr-13 01:40:43

I would imagine your hours are based very carefully around their own needs, but I'm a bit confused as surely you already know what their needs & schedules are and therefore know whether you can reasonably expect to be able to change your hours in this way?

My nanny knows exactly what hours I need her and why, and although I always let her go earlier/ come in late when I can, she couldn't take such a cut in hours everyday without making it impossible to continue, although I value her highly.

If she asked for a cut in hours that would make my life unworkable then I'd be very concerned that she hadn't grasped the real basics of the job, it would effect my trust and relationship with her.

I can only assume your employers don't need all the hours in the evening and that's why you can change your job scope?

pollypandemonium Thu 04-Apr-13 01:44:34

OP's contract is due so now is the appropriate time to re-negotiate.

Do you know anyone else who may be able to do some of the hours? Your employer may consider a job-share arrangement if you co-ordinate it.

LadyHarrietdeSpook Thu 04-Apr-13 10:01:07

When you say they have 'no set hours' what exactly do you mean?

I have set hours in my contract but in fact have more control over my time than those numbers would suggest. This doesn't mean though, that I could start leaving at 4 pm to get home for a nanny who wanted to leave at 5.30.

Polly - a family is not going to operate PAYE for two employees under these circumstances. That's just ridiculous.

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