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Childminders club.......Have just found out why theres no work around here

36 replies

HenniPenni · 08/03/2006 12:05

the support minders around here have had 50 newly registered childminders in the last year!!

Apparently the new minders keep being told on the courses that there is plenty of work around, when there obviously isn't. I know established minders around here are really struggling. Arrrgh, there's not enough work around, why do they keep telling them that there is???. Sorry to rant but am getting annoye with this.

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HenniPenni · 08/03/2006 12:06


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pol25 · 08/03/2006 12:31

Where are you Hennipenni?


HenniPenni · 08/03/2006 12:41

Pol25, I'm in the Midlands.

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FeelingOld · 08/03/2006 12:45

There have been quite a lot of new childminders round here just done/doing their ICP whilst some of the ones who did it 12-18 months ago have given up cos they can't find anyone to look after, its just stupid isn't it?
Luckily for me I am part of a local childminding group and we are all quite full and pass enquiries on to each other if we can't do the work.

We spoke to our development officer about this and asked why they were still letting people from here do the ICP and registering when lots of childminders are struggling or giving up (incidentally most of them have not joined our group) and she just said that she gives an honest reply to them when they ask about how much work there is around here when they attend the 1st briefing session saying 'some childminders are full and some are struggling to find work'. She said there is nothing she can do cos she can't stop people registering.


HenniPenni · 08/03/2006 12:55

I know that they can't stop people registering, but, I really wish that they would be more honest and not just say " Oh yes, theres plenty of work around!". thses poor poeple are getting their hopes up and then wondering why they aren't getting any calls.

At our childminding group it appears that the vacancies co-ordinator and the support childminders are full and getting work,(not going to say anymore) but the rest of us, including some very established minders aren't.

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FeelingOld · 08/03/2006 14:14

Its such as shame, childminders are spending money getting their houses equipped and getting toys etc only to not be able to find work. Also all of the time and money spent on ICP, 1st aid courses, health and police checks etc and then pack in after a few months.

How many mindees do you have HenniPenni?


FeelingOld · 08/03/2006 14:18

We don't have a vacancy co-ordinator as such, we have our own group website and one of the minders updates that but we have done it this way so that everyone gets and equal chance when parents look at it.
All childminders in our area are invited to join our group and we have a stay and play session weekly at our local surestart centre, but out of loads of childminders there are only about 8 of us who regularly attend, but if others came along they could have their details put on our website, but for some reason they just don't come along. It's a shame really cos we all help each other to fill vacancies.


diddle · 08/03/2006 14:31

hennipenni - i'm in the mdilands too, and we've got plenty aroudn here, well as far as i know we have, I have never had any problems filling spaces there are loads of minders round here as well. Maybe you could advertise more?


HenniPenni · 08/03/2006 14:51

Diddle, I do advertise in schools, libraries, soft play centres, post offices, Gp surgeries/HV. All this has cost me a small fortune over the years! Have a website that I'm setting up at the mo',and have just ordered some more bussiness cards.

Feelinold, I currently have a 20 month old,a 11 year old and 2 8 year olds. I should also have two children starting in September who will fill my under 5's spaces, but, I know from bitter experience that these may not happen!

Thankyou all for listening, just get a bit fed up with it all every know and again.

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HellyBelly · 08/03/2006 15:07

not read whole thread but I'm sure it will pick up. I lost 3 mindees in October (oh, that sounds bad doesn't it - I had to get rid of 1 and the other 2 came with him!) and it went really quiet for a while and I really really worried when dh lost his job at Christmas (still out of work - so annoying being here!) but in the last 4 weeks I've taken on 3 new part time mindees and already one has increased her days and today another asked to which will leave me almost fully booked again. I really believe there are quiet periods and then it goes mad! At the moment mine all seem to be babies - must be a certain time of year that everyone's at it Wink Grin

Good luck, hope those new starters don't let you down!

BTW, agree with you about how rubbish it is that they lie about how much work there is!!! Angry


HenniPenni · 08/03/2006 15:15

Thanks Hellybelly, but I've been waiting for it to pick up now for 2 years Sad

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HellyBelly · 08/03/2006 15:24

Oh god, that's really bad!! :( Have you spoken to CIS about it? That's just not fair is it! Angry


Isyhan · 08/03/2006 15:54

Well I dont feel sorry for the new childminders I just think they are daft. When I was considering cming the first thing I did was to ring round other cmers to find out if there was enough business. You dont start up in business if there are no customers do you you do your research!


pol25 · 08/03/2006 19:14

I know someone who is a minder on my sisters road in mountsorrel, leicestershire and she finds it near on imposs to fill her spaces and charges only £1.95 p/hr!
She is an ex nurse too and is so lovely!
I feel v.sorry for minders in this situation (feel alittle guilty for being and new minder)but in Romford Essex) It's hard being self employed and not knowing where money is coming from.
Good luck Hennipenni!


HenniPenni · 08/03/2006 20:09

Pol, please don't feel guilty about it, I was grumbling about the system- not the new minders.

I hope I haven't offended anybody or scared them away from this forum!

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Tan1959 · 08/03/2006 21:45

I too sympathise Hennipenni - I was in the same position myself until Jan of this year - now business is picking up, otherwise I would have given up!

I really hope things improve for you.


ThePrisoner · 08/03/2006 21:50

I am a more-or-less-defunct vacancy co-ordinator (it's been decided that we're not needed any more), and I really would like to reassure other childminders that we are not all grabbing any new work that comes in (although I dare say that some do).

I can't speak for all the other towns/counties in the UK but, here, we have so few calls via the Childrens Information Service that I sometimes think that they might as well not bother having a website (if you google "childminder" and my county, the CIS site appears several pages later, and it is certainly not obvious that this is the place parents should be looking for the official list of registered childminders - parents do not know where to look in the first place).

All my work has been through ongoing sibling connections, word-of-mouth, or just making sure that everyone knows who I am!! I've been minding for many years, and it certainly didn't happen overnight. I would hate to think that other minders think I'm full because of my vacancy co-ordinator role.

We have a new minder in our area and I know she is going to pick up work very soon - she has made it her business to come to lots of child-related groups (such as toddler group), she has done a flyer-drop in the area, and there is interest already. She is going to be competing with other well-established childminders who do not have work - but they don't go out and about, they stay at home and moan about having no work!! (Please don't think that I am suggesting that any MN minders do this!!) I think you have to get your face known, just being an advert or a name on the CIS website may not be enough.


nzshar · 08/03/2006 22:21

I have been watching this thread and trying to decide whether to post or not and have decided to go for it fuelled by Isyhan's and TP's posts.

I am a newly registered childminder. I know there are a lot of childminders in my area, i researched as Isyhan rightly says all new childminders should. But i have weighed up the pros and cons and felt that what i have to offer (NNEB and 16 years experience working with children) would give me an edge.

Having said that I am very active in my advertising. I have a website, have done leaflet drops (400 so far and another 600 this weekend) locally. I go to childminder/toddler groups regularly....actually Mon-Fri mornings i am one or the other. I have put up notices in supermarkets,local shops, schools,preschools and toddler groups. I have gone through the advertising list that helly(?) has put up on here and advertised on almost all of them.

We are all self employed people in a competitive market. No one tells a prospective chip shop owner that there are already 5 locally so no more thank you!(just as a silly example) :)

I personally have had very different messages from 2 minders within 1 block of me. One says she has loads of calls mainly from CIS but is now getting word of mouth clients as well. She has already passed on a call to me :) Another who has been registered since 2004 and has her first child a month ago!

All i know is if it dosent work for me it wont be because i havent done enough or hadnt put my name out there enough :o


ThePrisoner · 08/03/2006 22:36

nzshar - have you had feedback from all your advertising? I think it's good to be out and about, people need to put a "face to the advert" (if that makes sense) and to see the childminder "in action".

It is unbelievable that someone registered since 2004 has only just got her first mindee!! I think most people would have given up.


nzshar · 08/03/2006 23:02

Not much feedback yet TP been only aggresively advertising for the past 2 weeks not expecting miracles though a nibble would be nice. Wink

Having a 21month old has "put" me out there already to a certain extent. Heres hoping my lo dosent show me up too much huh :o

The woman who hasnt had anyone since 2004 is more doing it as a hobby i think thats the only explanation i could think of.


ThePrisoner · 08/03/2006 23:07

A hobby!!! I wish (she says after working from 7.30am till 7.00pm)

I'm interested in all the websites that minders are now doing - does everyone get work through theirs?


HenniPenni · 08/03/2006 23:15

TP, just 7.30am till 7pm? You part timer youGrin! I'm open for a whole hour and a half longer than you!

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ThePrisoner · 08/03/2006 23:23

Nah, today was just a part-time day really ...


HellyBelly · 09/03/2006 07:40

TP - I honestly get most of my work through my website and have had great feedback. A couple of people said on the phone that they wanted me based on my website, the meeting was more a formality! I think it helped to have a photo of myself and my setting so people felt they knew me already, and all the policies and procedures are there for them to look at before they contact me. And I promise I'm not saying this because I build them in my spare time, I really think it works! The last website I built for a childminder was Imps and Angels (been too busy to do them more recently) which was finished at the end of January. She emailed me a month later to say she'd had 5 enquiries through the website which I didn't think was bad going considering some of the online advertising can take a while to appear on google searches etc. If I was looking for a childminder myself and lived in an area where there were a lot of minders to choose from, I know I'd start looking at any with a website first to see what info I can get and take it from there. Having said that, that's because I'm very much an internet type of person, others don't even have a computer and just ask for lists from CIS (if they know they exist of course Wink)

However, as you say, many people who go to groups themselves would try and get recommendations, I presume - one of my latest mindees is through a childminder recommending me so I can see this working too. Just took a while to get myself known when I first started.

HTH :)


bigisbeatifulwasoldandfat · 09/03/2006 08:25

im the vacancy coordinator for before after school care for local primary school. as i mentioned once before we got together and did a leaflet explaning benefits of home based care. it seems to have worked, and there have been a few calls. i ALWAYS ring round my list, see who has what available and then give the client a selection of numbers to call. i would never take the work myself and not tell the others. is there anyone you can report this to, they really should'nt be doing the job if this is how they work. i have a website of my own and i have had quite alot of interest from it, but most work comes through cis.

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