Nanny interview tips
Although useful, the following list of questions is not meant to be comprehensive. You should add questions on issues that are important to you. For example, you may wish to ask about the nanny’s attitudes towards things like discipline, sweets, television, etc.
- What made you become a Nanny?
- What ages of children have you particularly enjoyed caring for? Why?
- What do you think the children you have cared for would say about you?
- How would you describe your personality?
- What do you think are your particular strengths/weaknesses when working with children?
- What aspects of this particular job do you think you will enjoy?
- Are there any elements of this role that you are unsure of?
- What would you do if… (give an example of an emergency or similar situation where an individual’s initiative would need to be used) …?
- What would be your ideal day with my child/children?
- What would you do on a rainy day?
- How do you feel about phone use during your working day?
- How might you spend the day with my child? (Ask them to give examples of the sorts of activities that they might fill the day with and take note of developmental opportunities and variety offered.)
- Are you a competent cook? Are you confident to cook for the children? Please provide examples.
- Why are you looking to leave your current position? (If appropriate, otherwise ask what made them leave their last job as a nanny.)
- What difficulties have you experienced as a nanny and how did you resolve these issues?
- How many days of sickness absence have you had in the last 12 months?
Discuss with your potential nanny:
- The wage or salary (with details about tax and National Insurance arrangements).
- How payment will be made, monthly or weekly, by cheque or directly into a bank account, etc.
- The hours and duties of the job, referring to the job description if necessary.
- When you would want them to start.
- What holiday entitlements will be and whether they would be willing to take them at certain times – for example, to fit in with school terms or your annual leave.
- The length of the probationary period.
- Positive discipline strategies – Remember a trained childcare worker would never use physical punishment as a form of discipline.
- Child safety: in the home (including dealing with pets); when using public transport; and, where appropriate, when using a car (seat belts, car’s capacity, etc.) – the Child Accident Prevention Trust produces leaflets and checklists on all aspects of child safety in the home and all childcare settings for both parents and childcare workers.
What do your children think?
It is important to let your children meet the potential nanny. You do not need to tell your children that this might be their nanny when they are introduced. Observe how the individual interacts with your child. It may be a good sign if they pay more attention to them than to you. Take note of how your child responded.
What does the nanny want to ask you?
Interviewing is a two-way process. Make sure you offer the nanny the chance to ask you questions.