Finding a Qualified Nanny

May 24, 2009 by  
Filed under Newborn Care

If you were to look back in history, you would see that many families used a nanny. Although using a nanny became less popular for several years, today, more and more parents are choosing this type of childcare over a babysitter or daycare center. Nannies used to be only for the rich and famous but this is not the case anymore. Nannies are specially trained so they have tremendous knowledge and expertise in childcare.

One of the first decisions you will make for your newborn baby is the pediatrician but following that, you should consider hiring a trained nanny. With this, you will have an extra pair of hands and input that could make your life less complicated.

Finding a qualified nanny involves many things, one being a connection between parent and the nanny. This person should live a life of integrity, someone with sound character, and values that match the way you see raising your child. Instead of choosing a nanny that will set the rules, this person should support you, someone who is willing to go by your rules. Of course, a good nanny will have advice and suggestions but they should never push them on you. Since this person will care for your newborn, you want someone you can trust and a person who will create a safe, comfortable, and smooth environment.

In addition to having a connection between parent and nanny, there must also be a connection between the baby and nanny. As you begin your search, you will be interviewing many people. It is important to watch the nanny around your child, paying attention to the way in which he or she handles the baby. Remember, even newborns have keen senses so if the child has any fear or feels uncomfortable, you will notice the baby crying, squirming, and appearing restless. These should all be indicators that a particular nanny is not the right fit.

Some special considerations would also come into play when choosing a qualified nanny.

For one thing, depending on the nanny, he or she may have children or live in a home with other people. Germs can be spread through contact, meaning if the nanny’s child or a family member were sick, your baby could be exposed. While you can never fully control the spread of germs, as you interview nannies, learn about their personal situation, especially if there is any type of known illness.

You could certainly conduct a search on your own for a qualified nanny but another option is to work through a licensed agency. These agencies carefully screen anyone interested in working as a nanny, performing background and even credit checks. The agencies will also look at the person’s driving history, health history, and criminal history.

Typically, new parents want the most experienced nanny they can find but even people just starting out might be the perfect fit. The goal is to choose a reputable agency so even people just starting out as a nanny will have been investigated. From there, you need to interview the individual to see if there is a click with you and the child.

Some people who become a nanny have grown children or even grandchildren. In fact, some nannies have no children at all but were at one time a nurse. Again, do not discount everyone simply because they are just getting started as a nanny, have grown children or no children at all.

After interviewing several people, you will now narrow your choices down two or three.

If you are working with an agency, they would help create a legal contract and most often, the nanny would come with a trial period so if you are not happy, you are no longer contractually obligated. Even if you choose the perfect nanny, there could be times when he or she becomes ill or has an emergency. Therefore, you will need to have a backup – someone trusted that could fill in should this type of situation arise. You might also ask the agency if they provide the nanny with any insurance benefits or vacation pay. If not, this is an incentive that you might consider offering.

Choosing a nanny is a difficult and emotional time. After all, your goal is to find a qualified and responsible professional who will care for your newborn as if he or she were their own. Approaching the hiring of a nanny as a business helps and as the individual works with you, the relationship will likely relax and evolve.