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Discuss everything related to paid childcare here, including childminders, nannies, nurseries and au pairs.

Childcare

Hiring An unexperienced nanny

10 replies

daffyd · 14/10/2007 21:21

Hello everyone, I am new to the site, but I have been reading all the threads-so useful! I am thinking of hiring a nanny for my nearly year old child as nursery not particularly working out and unfortunately the very experienced nannies seem out of my pay bracket especially when you add tax and NI.I have seen a young 18-19yr old nanny who is fresh out of CACHE diploma but has had some work experience in nursery and baby sitting.I am not sure about hiring her and wanted to know what other people thought.Her references are good but I am thinking of putting webcam in the house anyway, but I would love to hear from mums and nannies alike.

OP posts:
NannyL · 14/10/2007 21:39

OMG at webcam.... make sure you tell her first! you legally have to tell her

My thoughts on hiring a 1st time nanny.... we all started somewhere.... when i 1st started nannying, after 6 months i was left proxy parenting for 2 weeks with a 4 month old, a 5 year old and an 8 year old.... we were all fine.... but the chidlrens mum was happy to leave me with them for 2 weeks, strict instructions of no contact at all unless genuine emergancy.

Could you have a few days with her first... to get the feel of what you think she will be like.

Also from my point of view i know lots and lots of nannies and in my time i have only come across 1 nanny who i wouldnt want to look after my children,.... all the otehrs id willingly hand over hypothetical child and elave for the day knowing full well the child will ahve been happy and well cared for all day!

Have also met loads and loads of mum and i wouldnt want a significantly higher proportion of mums i have met to care for my children (not that they would probably want to care for them anyway, but hope you see what i am trying to say!)

(also lots and lots of mums i wouldnt hesitiate to leave my baby wioth as well!)

NAZA123 · 14/10/2007 22:02

This reply has been deleted

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BirdyArms · 14/10/2007 22:15

Make sure that you give her a proper trial. I interviewed one very young girl with some experience working in a nursery, I really liked her but got her to take the lead on a trip to the playground and was shocked how badly she coped. Different situation because I had a 2.5 and 6mth old and she really couldn't cope with 2 - toddler was running in front of swings, out of playground and she was miles behind with the baby. Just didn't think that they would be safe with her. But definitely easier with one child and a definite advantage to be able to train someone up. We now have a v experienced nanny who is great with the dc's but a bit set in her ways.

kkey21 · 15/10/2007 09:26

When i was 19 i looked after a 7mth old and 3yr old for Mon-Thurs for a year, and coped brilliantly and loved every minute of it-it all depends on the maturity of the person but i would say give her a 4wk clause in the contract where you could let her go at anytime if you felt it wasn't working and go for it!
Also treat her well as an employer, make sure she is happy, paid on time and feels very settled as that really helps too! xx

frannikin · 15/10/2007 12:53

I echo what everyone else has said - we all had to start somewhere, but be prepared to do a bit of hand holding first. I'm eternally grateful to the mother who employed me at the age of 18 with no childcare qualification (just finished A-levels) and only babysitting experience to look after her kids for the summer.

Does she have experience of looking after children in a domestic environment whilst they're awake (ie daytime babysitting)? What do her references say about her self-motivation, ability to cope under pressure, reliability, ability to work alone etc?

I'd invite her for a trial day (or week) and see. I think I'd also want to be around for a couple of weeks, or at least popping back to check up.

The danger with a young, inexperienced, live-out nanny is that they don't see it as a proper job because there's a certain lack of accountability there. It's a problem that only time or experience can cure really - but if she's had to get out of bed to go to college or do placements then you're probably ok. If she's live in it's not so much of a problem because you boot her out of bed every morning.

daffyd · 15/10/2007 15:08

Thank you for all the advice.I am still in process of interviewing her and my child still at nursery.Still in 2 minds whether to take her out.She has been sick on/off and had so much time off and maybe got paranoid about nursery.Heard lots of scare stories about nurseries but on the other hand hiring an experienced nany for 1 child is overly expensive.With 2 kids its definitely cheaper getting a nanny and may make more sense.I only put her in 3 days a week so I'll keep interviewing and eventually make my mind up!
Great forum in general though and have got so many ideas/tips here.

OP posts:
eleusis · 16/10/2007 16:31

I think if you need to a nannycam cam then a nanny isn't for you.

What about an au pair / childminder combination?

There are ways to get a nanny more economically, but they generally involve hiring from abroad and offering a full-time live-in position.

You have to be able to let go and allow someone else to have some control over your child's care when you hire a nanny. Some peop[le aren't able or willing to do this, and for them I think a nanny will end in tears (for all three of you). In some ways having ananny allows you more control over your kids days, but also I feel you have to be able to walk out the door and trust completely that the children are safe and well cared for for the ten hours until you return. If you can't comfortably do this, then having a nanny I feel is not for you.

Squiffy · 16/10/2007 17:12

Maybe you should think about a different nursery instead? Remember there are pros and cons on both sides - at a nursery you have problems when your child is sick wheras with a nanny you can have just the same problems when a nanny gets sick.
I think TBH that if you are thinking seriously about webcams then maybe you are being overly cautious (most diplomatic way I can think of putting it), and if so then an inexperienced nanny might not be the answer no matter how good she is.... and if in your heart you do think you are a bit nervous about this then maybe it wouldn't be fair on this girl either - it would be a big blow to her self esteem if she feels she isn;t trusted on her first real job....

daffyd · 19/10/2007 14:32

yes I know nanny cam may seem cautious but the nursery I send my girl to has a camera that you can watch in parents room and i know some nurseries have webcam.
Its difficult when hiring nannies as it seems harder to let go to just one person!
I decided not to go for the inexperienced girl-though she herself was lovely, my child has asthma symptoms and I just wanted someone a bit more experienced and unfortunately the pay they wanted wasn't what i could offer.

I think if we have another child a nanny would definitely be on the cards.

Why oh why is childcare such a nightmare!
I think we are so much more cautious these days as compared with our parents generation-they woould choose a childminder that they had just met!

I know-times change but its a lot more diffucult to make the "right " decision.

OP posts:
jenjen80 · 22/10/2007 19:26

Hi i'm a nanny have been to 9 years now. I was thrown in at the deep end when i was fresh from college. i was 18 and a newly qualified nanny and was given a job looking after 6 month old twins. I was really grateful that someone gave me the chance and ended up staying for over 4 years.

All i can say is give newly qualified nannies a chance they all have to start somewhere.

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