The Benefits of Hiring a NYC Nanny
More than ever before, mothers are returning to the workforce when their children are still babies. For some this is by choice, while for others it’s a financial necessity. Whichever the case may be, leaving your baby or toddler in the care of someone else can be a daunting and emotional experience. Hiring a NYC Nanny can make the whole experience less traumatic for both mothers and babies, and though more costly than other child care options, the benefits of having a nanny clearly outweigh the less expensive alternatives, such as daycare centers.
Having a New York Nanny to care for your baby or toddler is beneficial for their emotional health and development. Having a single, familiar person to care for them provides security and continuity, and allows a loving, trusting relationship to blossom between the nanny and child. A nanny who knows your child well is also able to respond promptly to their individual needs, which is often not the case in a daycare center environment, where there are interchangeable staff and a large carer to child ratio.
For all children, young babies in particular, having a nanny means that their feeding and sleeping schedules can be maintained easily. Also, any changes that you wish to introduce to your child’s schedule, such as introduction of solids and potty training, can be implemented easily and consistently by a nanny. Many daycare centers don’t have the time or resources to provide such services and are reluctant to help potty train toddlers.
For very young children whose immune systems are not yet fully developed, being cared for in their own home by a NYC Nanny will prevent them from being exposed to the huge variety of bugs and illnesses that circulate within daycare centers. Besides keeping your child healthy, this benefits you as an employee also, because if your child does fall ill they can still be cared for by the nanny in your home. If your child is ill they are unable to attend daycare, which means that you will need to take time off to care for them at home.
Hiring a NYC Nanny means that life is less hectic and complicated for busy New York working parents. It means that in the morning you will have help with your child while you are trying to prepare yourself for your working day. It also means that chores, such as preparing and packing your child’s milk and food for the day, along with diapers, clothes, and other essentials, are not required. Nor will you need to bundle your child into the car early in the morning to get them to daycare before you start work, which adds a considerable amount of time to your daily commute and cuts down on the quality time you spend with your child.
A nanny can also help reduce your domestic workload and ease the stress levels of being a working mother. Keeping your house tidy, doing your child’s laundry, preparing bottles, and making pureed baby foods are just some of the household tasks that a nanny will do that will make your life easier, especially after a long day at work. Some nannies in New York will even be prepared to do some light cleaning duties and grocery shopping, which will further reduce your household workload.
Hiring a NYC Nanny is certainly not an inexpensive child care option when compared to daycare centers. Yet the benefits that you receive for the cost are huge, and certainly well worth considering when you make the decision to find child care for your precious baby or toddler.
Choosing the Right NYC Nanny
Many parents are shunning traditional nanny and babysitting agencies in New York in favour of finding carers themselves, often utilising the growing number of websites dedicated to this purpose. Traditional agencies are certainly the more expensive option, and often charge the equivalent of a month’s wages as a placement fee. The expense does however provide peace of mind for parents because the nannies and babysitters from reputable agencies are thoroughly screened, and have proven track records with the agencies. Yet by following the tips below, parents are able to ensure that they find the perfect New York Nanny or babysitter for their family without the expense of agency fees.
Perfect your interview technique. For parents who aren’t accustomed to interviewing candidates for employment, this can seem like a daunting experience, but it’s an incredibly important part of finding the right carer for your children. Most importantly, be prepared. Have a list of questions for the candidate which are specific to your needs as a parent. Ask the candidate about their previous positions, including; what duties they performed, the age of the children in their care, why they left the position, and the experience they gained from the role. Present the candidate with some different scenarios, maybe involving emergency situations or discipline issues, and then ask them how they would react to the scenario. If possible take comprehensive notes so that you can look back over them later. With the candidates permission you could also record the interview, using a video camera, a voice recorder or your cell phone.
Check references. This is an immensely important aspect to employing a New York Nanny or babysitter, yet often parents don’t do it properly, and sometimes don’t do it at all. Ask the candidate to provide at least three checkable references, preferably previous employers, and then phone them all. If you are unable to make contact, then ask the candidate for another referee that is contactable. Contacting referees via email is not recommended, it is easy for dishonest candidates to fabricate referees and previous employers, and set up fake email addresses. Again, be prepared, and have a list of specific questions to ask the referee. Ask about the candidates duties, the age of the children, and why the candidate left their employment. You can then cross check these details with the details that the candidate has provided you with in the interview. Also, ask the referee about the candidate’s personal presentation, punctuality, reliability and perhaps most importantly, if they would employ them again.
Do a trial. If the interview went well and the references check out, then ask the candidate to do a trial shift. Observe the way the candidate interacts with your children and suggest that she think up some age appropriate activities to do with them. Also, observe the way that your children respond to the candidate, and always ask for their opinions afterwards; children is surprisingly excellent judges of character. If the trial is under two hours then it isn’t necessary to pay the candidate but if it is for any longer than this or you leave your children in the sole care of the candidate then it is customary to pay the candidate the expected hourly rate for their time. If the initial trial is successful and you are happy with the candidate then offer them a position based on a successful trial period. Two full weeks is the optimal length of time for a trial period, as this allows the candidate to become familiar with their duties and for your children to become accustomed to their new carer. During this period take note of how well the candidate performs their duties, how your children feel about the new carer, whether they are reliable and punctual and whether things seem to be running smoothly in your home. It is also a good idea to put in an appearance at a time when the candidate isn’t expecting your presence; is the candidate doing what is expected of them and are they where they’re meant to
Use your powers of observation. This pertains to both the interview process and the trial period. Are they punctual? Are they well groomed? If they are using their own car to transport your children, is it clean and in good working order? Did they turn up for the interview or for the trial period smelling of cigarettes when they have said they don’t smoke? Do a Google search of the candidate’s name, and also check the candidate’s profiles on social networking sites such as facebook, twitter and myspace. The internet is a powerful tool and should be utilised to reveal the true character of a candidate where possible. A candidate that posts provocative or revealing images of themselves, or brags about the amount of alcohol they drank on the weekend is probably not someone you want caring for your children.
Finally, and most importantly, trust your instincts. Even if you’ve followed all the above steps, and the candidate seems theoretically perfect, there is sometimes a niggling feeling that something isn’t quite right. Trust these feelings, for a parent’s instinct regarding their children is usually correct.