How To Fire Your Nanny


Published on June 9, 2020

When you first hire a nanny or any childcare, probably the last thing on your mind will be having to fire that person. Firing someone will never be an easy task. A nanny, especially, will because such an important part of family- and your children’s lives. Especially if they are living with you, or maybe spending holidays together. So implementing that change and terminating a contract is never going to be an easy thing. For yourself, and your children.

However, sometimes it is the right or needed thing to do. So if your mind is made up: what is the best way to fire your Nanny?

Why Fire Your Nanny

Firstly, it is important to make sure you are making the right decision in firing your Nanny. Reasons for this can differ extremely per situation, person, and family– and it sometimes can be a very personal thing. Especially because a nanny will be so closely involved in your and your family’s lives.

Whatever the reason is, make sure you have thought it true completely. Where possible, it is always helpful to consult another member of the family about the decision to fire your Nanny. You want to understand everyone’s point of view and make sure it’s not just a temporary glitch you can get through. Although, as mentioned above, it could be a very personal process, there are some warning signs you want to be mindful of when having a nanny. So what could be reasons to fire your Nanny?

Changes in Financial Situation

This is perhaps the most difficult reason to fire your Nanny. You and your family might really love having the Nanny and all they do. But if the finances coming in no longer match up with the cost of salary for the nanny, it might be time to make some tough decisions.

Before you fire your nanny, there might be options to consider first. Have a look at what it would mean to reduce your Nanny’s hours. Perhaps changing the contract from full time to part-time might be an option. Some Nanny’s even only work once a week per household, after school only or just weekends, so reduction might be an option.

Of course, this is a conversation you should openly and honestly have with your Nanny. If they can get a Nanny share somewhere in the area, that might help too. This is where the nanny is shared between two or more families living close to each other. And maybe your Nanny might have other suggestions too on how you can get through this period when finances might look a little more difficult.

Skills and Performance

A completely different reason to consider firing your Nanny might be because of them simply not doing their job in the way you want it too. You might feel there to be a lack of skills and performance. This is something to take very seriously.

If you are paying someone to do a certain role, an extremely important one – caring for your children. So it should be performed well. However, there are many blurry lines here. So before you come to the point of firing your Nanny, sit down with them and talk about the things you are unhappy with. Maybe your Nanny wasn’t aware that you wanted certain things done in a specific way. And things might well improve once they are aware of it!

However, if you feel like you have taken the above steps, given the Nanny time to improve and things are still not changing in the way you would like it to be. Then it might be time to acknowledge that this Nanny might just be the wrong match for you. So then letting them go could be the best for both of you in the long run, and especially for the children.

If you feel there is a lack of skills or knowledge in certain areas, but you feel your Nanny does match well with your family – you can always consider training. Specific training courses can make a great difference in how a Nanny works around the house, and with the children.

Illegal Activity

There should be no question about this one, especially when it comes to someone working with your children. If your Nanny has done anything illegal whilst in your working hours, has shown up to work under the influence or has put you or any of your household in danger, you can have grounds for immediate dismissal. When in doubt, consult a lawyer but it can be pretty straight forward.

How To Fire Your Nanny

If you have indeed come to the decision that firing your Nanny is the best thing to do, you want to make sure you do it right. Firing anyone can be a challenging task and should not be taken lightly. Knowing you are doing the right thing by letting this person go is one thing. Doing it the right way is another thing.

Firstly you want to make sure that legally you are taking all the right steps. This UK Government website page can help you along a lot already, or consult a lawyer if you are unsure.

So what is the best way to fire your Nanny?

  1. Follow a staged approach
    This means you have not rushed into things. So before you would get to the firing stage, you have a sit down with your Nanny and discuss anything you are unhappy with. Give them an opportunity to improve or change their ways that might work for you and your family. (This does not count for ‘illegal activity’ as mentioned above).
  2. Where possible, only fire face to face
    When firing your Nanny, make sure to keep communication very clear. Sending an email or making a phone call with potentially devastating news for your Nanny, is not professional. Make sure to schedule in the time to have a sit-down meeting with them, where you can argue your case and explain why you have made the decision you have. For both parties, this will be the best possible way and process.
  3. Always remain polite
    Firing someone can be an emotional and difficult thing to do. Emotions can potentially run high during the conversation. Even if you are firing the Nanny because of negative reasons, try to keep the conversation polite and friendly. Try to understand from their point of view that this will be a difficult thing for them to hear.  If relationships have soured in such a way that you do not feel able to be friendly, at least keep it professional. This conversation is not about going over past mistakes and issues anymore or bringing any negative things up anymore. Argue your point clear and concise. Even though the end result will be the same, there is no need to make it more negative than it is and everyone will feel better for it.

How can Polo & Tweed help?

So if you have indeed had to fire your Nanny for whatever reason.  Polo & Tweed can help you find a new, much better-suited Nanny for you and your family! We are leading experts in finding the best match for your set up and requirements. We have a very thorough recruitment process making sure only the best possible matches will be selected for you. Let us help you in the search for a new, better-suited nanny and take all the stress out of it!

Do get in touch with us here and one of our recruitment consultants can talk you through what we can do for you.

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