There is a Lot to Think About as You Hire and Work With a Nanny
If you want to attract and keep a good nanny, then there are some steps you can take in order
to be a great nanny employer. It is important to treat your nanny fairly if you want
to better ensure that they stay long-term and enjoy working for you. While some
nanny employers treat their nannies as if they are easily replaceable, this kind of
mindset does not work in the long run.
A nanny oftentimes has a choice in where to go. Nobody wants a nanny that is
looking for greener pastures. More importantly, children get attached to their
nannies, and if you take the extra care to make sure your nanny feels
appreciated, your children are going to also appreciate it.
Give Your Nanny a Fare Wage and Benefits
When it comes to hiring a nanny, a couple of the most important factors are
compensation and benefits. This is definitely one of the first factors that your
nanny is going to consider when choosing an employer. Paying your nanny a fair
wage and giving them benefits (such as food, adequate lodging, and time off) is
very important. A savvy nanny is going to know what wage they can expect. If the
nanny feels that they are not being paid a fair wage, they will likely not work as
hard or start to look for work with someone else.
Be Open About Expectations, Compensation, and Benefits
A nanny should know what they are earning and how much work is required for
them to earn the stated amount. If there are factors that will cause their wages to
change, those should be stated clearly in writing.
What are the benefits of the job? If the nanny becomes sick, gets hurt, or needs
time off, what is provided? Likewise, are there performance bonuses, travel
opportunities, or full use of the kitchen? Clearly providing this information to your
nanny right at the beginning is helpful. Likewise, if there are limits to these
benefits or perks, those should also be provided.
On the other end is the expectations of the job. Good communication means
being clear about expectations. This will help everyone out in the long run.
Provide a list of the expectations in writing and go over them with your nanny.
Periodically review the expectations as things change. As the child grows, some
expectations may no longer be relevant and new ones will arise. If expectations
grow, consider giving your nanny a wage that reflects what is expected of them.
Show Your Nanny Appreciation
Everyone loves to feel appreciated. That includes nannies. A nanny that feels
that they are important and appreciated is more likely to continue to work hard
and even go above and beyond what is expected of them. On the flip side, if your
nanny feels that they are not appreciated, this may reflect in their work.
Feeling appreciated helps with motivation. It doesn’t have to be anything
extravagant. While periodic gifts are nice, even a small thank you, or “I am really
glad I hired you” work wonders. Be sincere and honest with your appreciation. A
note or handwritten card will mean a lot to your nanny and help establish a good
Maintain a Professional Relationship With Your Nanny
It is very important that the relationship between the employer and the nanny
remains professional. While it may be tempting to invite the nanny into the family,
this can change the dynamic of the relationship. This can also adversely affect
the spouse or children.
The fact that your nanny works in your home makes it more intimate than
working in an office. However, in the eyes of the nanny, your home is their
workplace. If the relationship becomes too friendly, it can make life changes extra
difficult. Your life and the life of your nanny should be separate. It’s important to
make sure that your nanny has a life outside of their work.
Give Your Nanny an Attractive Place to Stay
If you are providing boarding for your nanny, it should be adequate. Personal and
private space for your nanny is extremely important. This space should be a
place where they are able to enjoy their time off without unnecessary
Likewise, the space should not deviate too much from the rest of the home. For
example, if the rest of the home is bright and well-furnished, and the room is dark
and includes only a bed, the contrast will show the nanny that their job is not
A nanny’s space does not need to be expensive or extravagant. There are many
inexpensive ways to create a nice space. Curtains for privacy, a small table and
dresser, and a comfortable bed are all important touches. Extra additions can include a few small decorations such as pictures on the wall, a flower vase, or a mirror.
Help With Your Nanny’s Education
If you want your nanny to feel that their position is important and that their skills
are valued, providing them with extra education is a great way to help them grow.
Giving your nanny a chance to go to nanny training seminars and conventions is
a great way to show that you care about their career growth and that you are
committed to making sure that they are well-trained for their job. A good
employer gives their employees a chance for continued educational growth.
Likewise, you can do the same for your nanny.
Give Your Nanny Feedback on How They Are Doing
Feedback is important in every job. Nannies also appreciate feedback and the
chance to learn and grow. Sitting down with your nanny periodically and giving
them a review of what they are doing well and what they can improve is
important for everyone in the home.
These performance reviews work well at least once a year, but can be done
every quarter or semi-annually. This is also a great chance to discuss goals,
upcoming changes to the family dynamic, or changing needs of the family. As the
children grow and develop, it’s important to discuss how the nanny’s
responsibilities may change.
It’s optimal to put such performance reviews in writing so that your nanny can
easily review what is discussed. Likewise, it’s important to let your nanny give
you honest feedback about what is working well for them and what kind of
changes they would like to see. This kind of open communication helps to make
the nanny feel valued and happy with their job.
Utilize Nanny Communication Apps and Tools
Modern technology has improved many areas of life. That includes the nanny-
employer relationship. Using modern tools can make both of your jobs a lot
easier. Communication is incredibly important, and nanny apps such as
Rayz Kidz is a great additional tool to take advantage of. These apps
provide a great way to create a plan for childcare as well as provide a new
channel for effective communication between the parent and the nanny.
Give Your Nanny Time Off
Nannies have a very busy job that is often exhausting. Busy jobs oftentimes end
in burnout. Giving your nanny periodic time off is a way that they can recharge
and be better equipped to do their duties.
The time off you give your nanny will depend on a wide variety of factors that
have to do with your life and what your needs are. Time off is optimally discussed
at the beginning of the nanny-employee relationship, and it is recommended that
care is taken so that this time off is not altered.
If you travel with your family and the nanny, giving them some kind of time off
while you are traveling gives them a chance to unwind and see some places that
they may have never got to experience without working for you. This provides a
nice benefit for working for you.
Don’t Involve Your Nanny In Drama
Drama easily creates a toxic environment. One way to make a nanny start to look
for work elsewhere is to involve them in a family drama that they need not be a part
of. While some drama is a part of every household, aiming to shield your nanny
from drama as it arises does your nanny a huge favor.
A Happy Nanny Makes For a Happy Family
When your nanny is happy, the entire family benefits. With respect, open
communication, and adequate support, your nanny will be better able to thrive.
While not all nannies are a perfect fit for every family, it’s more likely that your
nanny will stay with you for the long term if you give them an environment where
they can thrive and take good care of themselves.
When it comes to being a great nanny employer, the best thing to consider is the
golden rule: treat your nanny how you would like to be treated. Like anyone, a
nanny will be able to tell if they are appreciated and valued. In the end, the time
and money saved make putting the effort into being a great nanny employer an
Photo: Courtesy of @nannyconnie via Instagram