When you begin your search for a nanny to take care of your family, you will find that you have several types of nanny services from which you can choose. You can work with bricks-and-mortar nanny agencies, online nanny services, or more generic websites or newspapers that allow you to post advertisements. If you choose to work with an online nanny service, you will need to proceed carefully – but you may find that it is the ideal option for you, both in terms of cost and in terms of benefit.
Online nanny services can provide interested families with the widest range of candidates. The listings will not be limited to one location, as they might with bricks and mortar nanny agencies, something that is of a particular benefit if your family is seeking a live-in nanny who could travel from anywhere to stay with your family. Because there are many nanny candidates competing for a few positions, it is in your best interest to be able to view as large a pool as possible so that you can carefully select the best person for your family.
Save Money by Working with Online Nanny Agencies
Bricks and mortar nanny agencies may charge $3,000 to $4,000 to help your family find the perfect nanny candidate. However, there is an element of trust that must exist between you and any nanny agencies with which you work – trust that the agency will screen its candidates carefully and will check references to make sure they are real and to make sure they are positive, for example. Some bricks and mortar nanny agencies are extremely reputable, but not all are, so if you are going to choose to use one, you need to do extensive research about the agency itself before you begin the process.
When you work with online nanny services, you will instead pay somewhere in the range of $98-$150 – and you will be able to control every aspect of your search. You can check the nanny’s references yourself and feel confident in what you learn from your phone calls and emails. You can also run your own criminal background check through many online nanny services, and you can use the results to screen any candidates in which you are interested.
In addition, online nanny services will provide the tools that you need to screen and interview nanny candidates. The process of hiring a nanny can take a great deal of time, but quality online nanny agencies will give you such tools as an interview guide and a reference checking form so that you know what questions to ask in these situations. Online nanny services may also provide resources about other aspects of the hiring process so that you are well prepared when you begin.
Online Nanny Services Are Specialists
A generic website that runs advertisements, such as Craigslist, or an ad in a newspaper may be the cheapest option for finding a nanny, but such places also cover a very broad scope. Because they are not strictly nanny agencies and instead run ads for everything from used cars to tickets for sporting events, there is no guidance to help you include the best information for a prospective nanny candidate to find you. You may be including too much or too little, and you may not receive the quality responses for which you are hoping.
Meanwhile, online nanny services specialize in finding and placing nannies. As a result, good online nanny agencies will guide you through the creation of your online profile. It will give you a list of questions that you should answer to ensure that you have provided the best, most complete information so that interested nannies can read through and know exactly what you are looking for. Online nanny services will also make sure that you are being concise and positive, and will even allow you to post a picture of you and your family, which can give a great deal of additional information for any candidate.
Security Issues with Online Nanny Agencies
Some people may have security concerns about working with online nanny agencies. Before you commit to placing your ad with any online nanny services, find out what information will be publicly accessible. For example, if your last name and location are made available on the site, an interested nanny could contact you offline by looking you up in the phone book – something you may not want to happen. Instead, make sure that any online nanny services you are considering will only list the information you wish to be available – usually not your last name, your address, or your phone number (although some families may elect to include their phone number).
If you want to include an email address in your profile, you may want to create one on one of the free sites such as Yahoo or Hotmail that is specifically used for your listing. In the interest of security, some online nanny agencies also will allow you to send and receive messages within the site, leaving it up to you and your family as to when to reveal a more direct method of contact.
The search for a nanny can be time consuming, but it doesn’t have to be complicated. When weighing your options for how to find a nanny, you may find that online nanny services provide the best value for your money and a way to find a quality nanny to take care of your children. Research your options carefully and only work with online nanny agencies that will take your security concerns seriously, and you are sure to find someone who will fit into your family with ease.