Sunday, May 22, 2011

What Nannies Want From Agencies

Communicate with us on a regular basis when we register with you! Nannies want and need agencies to keep in touch with us when we are job hunting. Send out email blasts or text blasts if you have a lot of nannies looking for jobs. Make a call and leave us a message if the number of nannies you represent is smaller. When we try to contact you, please get back to us within 24 – 48 hours. When nannies don't hear anything from an agency for weeks at a time and/or get no response to emails or calls the nanny makes to check in, we feel discouraged and annoyed. If an agency doesn't care enough about us to let us know what the status is for new jobs and our personal job search, we feel disconnected.

Prepare us for interviews with your clients. We’d like to know all there is to know about the families we are going to meet. Give us details and specifics about any issues the child(ren) are experiencing, let us know what the parents are looking for in a nanny, and we will look professional and prepared, which means the parents will see YOU in a favorable light. When we go in under-prepared, ultimately, the agency looks bad. We realize that it’s not always possible for an agency representative to meet face to face with every client family, but we still depend on you to do your due diligence.

Tell us what you understand the job description and pay scale are before we go to an interview. If we ask you a direct question, give us the exact information that you got from the client family. That way, if the family tells us something different about pay, duties, or hours, we won’t be caught off guard, and we can come back to you to ask why the information you gave us differed from what the family told us. Clear communication means less chance that a nanny will walk away from your agency feeling deceived.

Send us out for job interviews that match our needs, both stated and unstated. If we decline an interview based on the description of needs and pay that you give us, please don’t act annoyed or put out! Nannies know better than anyone how essential a good match between nanny and family is, and that means a good match in all sorts of ways. If you have a terrific nanny who you know (after meeting her and interviewing her and checking her references) is also soft spoken and extremely non-confrontational, her best match is not likely to be the loud, aggressively assertive family that says they expect nanny to always go above and beyond at all times no matter what. That match will end badly, whether it starts and stops with the interview, or evolves into a job placement, and bad matches mean that neither the nanny nor the family will call you back when they need help next time.

Keep in touch once the contract is signed and the job begins. Nannies (and families!) occasionally need support during our relationship. Agencies are often able to see things from a perspective nannies don’t have, which means a little encouragement or brainstorming if we call you for help can go a long way to preserving a match. We do understand that you can’t solve our problems for us, and chances are that we’d love a referral to someone who can coach us and help us prepare for a discussion with our employers. If we can call on you when an issue arises, we will call on you again when we are ready to search for our next position!

(This was sparked by a discussion on linkedIN about how traditional nanny agencies can compete with on-line matching sites.)

6 comments:

Marta Perrone said...

Of course you want these things and you should receive all of them. In addition, you need to know how to do these things yourself. The world is changing and while agencies are still very much alive, being self-sufficient and know how to handle every aspect of employment on your own is what separates you from someone that needs and waits for the assistance of an agency. This is why I have created workshops and classrooms filled with domestic workers wanting to understand how to present themselves professionally and maintain this status every step of the way.

Kleigh said...

I believe the parents should also be interviewed and have a list of past nanny or sitter recommendations. There are some crazy and wicked mamas out there.

Nanny Agencies In LA said...

Hi all...

Nanny agency is a nanny and aupair search and job service, providing employment for nannies and au-pair jobs worldwide. It play an important role in many families, they are often nurturers, sometimes educators, companions and caretakers or even mentors.

Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Great post!! All families should be given a handbook by their agency - how to treat you nanny and keep her happy - so she will stay a long time!

Neil Ickes said...

That was a very remarkable article. I think veteran nannies and the new ones should read your pointers to learn about dealing with their agencies. I do believe that agencies should be responsible with the nannies under their business. For one, when an agency is taking good care of their people, their subordinates (the nannies) will give a hundred percent to their jobs and take good care of their agency’s reputation by working hard and doing their job right.

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