Sometimes you meet someone and your personalities mesh. Perhaps this happened when you were interviewing nannies. You just know that you found the right person. And while you probably did find the perfect nanny for your family, Candi Wingate, president of nannies4hire.com, cautions you against hiring her before you take the following five steps.
It's almost entirely likely that your new nanny is telling the truth when she says she does not have a criminal record. Nonetheless, you're trusting her with your children and that calls for more than just good intuition. Plus, background checks are standard for most jobs. Many nanny agencies will run a background check for you, but if they don't, make sure do.
If your nanny will drive your kids, make sure you get a copy of her motor vehicle record for each state in which she has had a license. Nobody's perfect -- let's be honest, we've all gone a few miles over the speed limit -- and you have to determine what you're comfortable with as far as driving infractions. However, if she has multiple speeding tickets within a short period of time, or more than one at-fault accident, perhaps this isn't the person you want behind the wheel of a vehicle carrying our children.
Calling references is a waste of time, right? Nobody would use a reference that can't give a good review! Actually, you'd be surprised. Wingate insists that it's extremely important to always call references and ask them about their experience with your nanny candidate. She also recommends asking for landline numbers instead of cell phone numbers, as this allows you to independently verify the validity of the reference.
Creating a contract for your nanny is a must. "Sit down with your nanny and discuss it. Be sure to include anything pertaining to the job so that she understands what is expected of her," Wingate explains. "Lay out each of her responsibilities, the pay day, whether she will be using your car, keeping track of mileage if she uses her own car, etc." By addressing all of your expectations and the details of the job up front, you will avoid misunderstandings and frustration in the future.
This seems obvious, but some parents skip this step. If you interview nannies without your children present, make sure you schedule time for her to interact with your kids. You might have found a wonderful nanny candidate, but it's possible her personality and your child's personality won't mesh.
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