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How do I pick nannies to interview?

September 23, 2010

Dr. Lindsay Heller, The Nanny Doctor

Selecting nanny candidates to interview can be a tricky task that requires some skill! Fortunately enannysource.com provides you with what you need to know in to focus your nanny search and select only the cream of the crop to interview!  The most important step is making sure that you have a clear idea of what you want and what you need in a nanny.  After you have determined exactly what you are looking for, it is time to see who fits the bill! Here are some tips for determining who is in and who is out.

1)    Make a list of qualities you can’t live without in a nanny! This is different for every family so it is important that you determine what your list is. Do you want someone with multiples experience? Someone who has been a live-in nanny? Someone who has a degree in child development? Someone that has nanny newborn experience?

2)    Make a list of qualities that are absolute deal breakers! Does your nanny need to know how to swim? Do they need to be comfortable around dogs? Does she need to have cared for newborns?

3)    Start the nanny screening process early. Don’t wait for the in-person interview to ask all of the questions. Start screening candidates via e-mail, then over the phone, or Skype and then in in-person. Only a select few of the potential nanny candidates should make it to the in-person interview.

4)    Select only candidates who put their best foot forward! Individuals with strong portfolios, including their resume, cover letter and letters of reference are usually pretty together people themselves. This also goes for e-mail correspondence. If they are great at communicating via e-mail and professional, that will carry through to their day to day nanny work with your family!


6 Responses to How do I pick nannies to interview?

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Pat Cascio says:

One of the most impressive nannies I ever met in my 27 years of interviewing nannies had a professional portfolio, had great responses to my questions and she turned out to be wanted by the FBI. Once we placed the calls to her references I got a call from the FBI agent the same day telling me that she had stolen cash, checks, credit cards and jewelry from her past employers and the agent asked for her current address so they could go arrest her. Beware of the applicant that seems too good to be true. Check references before inviting anyone into your home and verify that the person is who they say they are by checking their identification before offering someone a job.

Janet says:

Oh my gosh, that’s crazy!! You really just never know who you’re talking to. We’ve been lucky so far in that we’ve managed to find excellent nannies for our kids over the years.

Hannah Smith says:

I think the list of absolute deal breakers is a MUST. We had deal breakers and then ended up making an exception for a nanny we thought would be a good fit by letting two of our deal breakers slide. As it turned out, those two deal breakers DID end up coming into play and a few months later we were back on the hunt for the perfect nanny. Stick to your instincts!

Isla says:

When do you recommend running a background check on a potential candidate?

admin says:

Hi Isla! That really depends on how much money you want to spend on background checks and how you feel about the candidates. You can run a rough, preliminary check on someone simply by typing their name into Google and searching different social media sites for them – you might be amazed at what pops up! From there, you probably want to run background checks on people you are seriously considering as candidates. Definitely run the check with enough time to get the results back before you have someone start working in your home. We offer comprehensive background checks on eNanny, ranging from basic to in depth!

Kylie Mathers says:

i definitely think #4 is important, but – like Pat said – also easy to falsify. it doesn’t take a lot of work to have someone clean up your resume for you and put together a nice looking portfolio. not saying that’s not important by any means though – obviously you want someone who takes the time to be presentable! just that you shouldn’t solely rely on a professional looking portfolio/resume.