Are you asking the right questions?
Temporary nannies are ad hoc childcare staff which you can book a while in advance or last minute, but just because they are short term doesn’t mean you should rush the hiring process. Make sure your family is in the right hands by properly vetting your temporary nanny candidates.
Finding the right candidate is a challenge, and the interview process is a critical step. As a recruitment agency, we’ve done hundreds of interviews and seen it all (good and bad). To help you along in the hiring process we put together this list of the top 10 most important interview questions to ask a temporary nanny candidate.
- Are you available for the whole period we need you? Make sure you ask this question right from the beginning as otherwise you will just waste your time to find out at the end that the nanny can only do part of the time you need her.
- Are you happy to cover x amount of days/ hours during your stint with us? Usually temp nannies will cover a period of time when you need urgent childcare such as a holiday period or a time when the mum had a difficult operation and she cannot look after the children. The hours might be slightly more than usual and they may need to be available for 12h or even 24h per day, so do check this aspect as well.
- Are you happy to travel with us (depending on the situation)? Most families will need the temp nanny to travel with them during the holidays (if that is the case) so do make sure that you ask them if they are happy to accompany you abroad and they do not have any other commitments back home. Also check logistics such as: valid passport, visas, etc. and confirm what expenses you will cover (hotel, food, etc.)
- Do you swim? This is another important aspect to ask a temporary nanny, just to double check that she will be able to continue the same activities your kids are doing with their usual/ long term nanny such as going swimming etc. Or maybe she is coming with you on holiday to the beach and she will need to be in the water with the children etc.
- Do you have a valid first aid? All nannies should have a valid first aid, including a temporary nanny. This is especially true if your temp nanny travels with you during holidays when the children are off school and the chance of different accidents is higher (allergies, falls, scratches, bruises, etc.)
- What activities do you have planned for the children? Considering the kids will probably be off the whole day during the time she is working for you, make sure the temporary nanny has a very extensive list of activities covering both indoors and outdoors.
- Do you have a current DBS (criminal record certificate)? Again, all nannies (and other staff) working with children should have a valid and clear DBS, but when you hire a temp nanny, do check that she has one, as it does take up to 4 weeks to have it back and sometimes even longer and you want to make sure that whoever is looking after your children is safe. (all P&T candidates have valid DBS checks)
- If we need to extend your time with us by x amount of days/ weeks, are you available to do it or do you have another booking right after ours? Depending on your situation, do check this as well as it’s handy to know in case you need to extend.
- NI and Taxes etc-make sure you discuss from the start who is responsible for paying the nanny’s NI and taxes. In a permanent, long term nanny’s case, the employer is responsible for making these payments. However, if it’s a nanny/ maternity nurse/ other who does only short term contracts, she might be registered as self employed, therefore she will be responsible for paying her own taxes etc. Do check with your accountant to make sure you will not have any problems with HMRC later on.
- Notice period – discuss this from the beginning with the nanny as you don’t want to be left in the lurch. Even if the nanny is temp, she should still give you some notice in case she needs to leave because of unforeseen circumstances. Same goes from your side, so make sure all these details are clear.
At Polo and Tweed, we understand that things can happen and you are in need of a temporary nanny ‘yesterday’! 🙂 so we will make the process of finding the right temporary nanny for you as stress free as possible. Contact us today and our team will send you the best temporary nannies that we have available on our books.