For a successful interview with a nanny candidate, we suggest to follow the following checklist.
1) Prepare yourself. Before the interview, allocate enough of your time to prepare yourself well; consider your nanny criteria, things that matter to you the most and things that you would or would not negotiate on. Prepare the right questions; you could go through all the documentation from the candidate that you received from the agency and make notes on the areas you would like to hear more.
The topics that may help you to think through:
- What will be the nanny responsibilities, children's routines, any allergies and special needs the nanny should be aware of, what are your likes and dislikes, things on which you should give clear instructions and the areas where nanny can use self-initiatives and own creativity
- What kind of and how much interaction will the nanny have with you
- What are the benefits you would like to achieve with hiring a nanny
- How flexible are you in regards to pay for the nanny, consider hourly or weekly gross (or net) rate, payroll, any potential car mileage cover, accommodation if you offer
2) Starting the interview. Make a good impression, be welcoming and approachable but stay true to yourself. Show your personality to see if you connect. Explain the candidate about the job you are offering and your expectations. Be clear about everything; you will see if the candidate is happy with the job description and your circumstances.
3) Questions. In order to get to know the nanny candidate as much as possible, ask the right questions and listen well. The questions could include nanny candidate's personality, why she likes nannying, past childcare experiences, views on childcare, routines for children, dealing in stressful situations and similar. It is important to ensure that the candidate understands the role and it is good to observe how the candidate is responding - is there any uncertainty, negativity, evasiveness, etc.?
A list of some useful questions:
Tell us about yourself. How would your friends describe you? Where are you from?
What are your hobbies and interests?
Why you like being a nanny?
What are you looking in an employer?
What are you future career plans and goals?
CHILD CARE EXPERIENCE AND VIEWS
How long have you been a nanny and why did you choose to work as a nanny?
What particular relevant experiences have you gained at your previous roles?
What do you enjoy most about working with children?
What types of activities you like to organise for children in your care?
How do you handle a child who misbehaves or has a bad day?
Have you ever been in an emergency situation? How did you handle it?
What types of activities do you like doing with children?
Did you ever have any difficulties or challenges with parents?
What do you think is your primary responsibility of my child's age?
Can you cook for our children?
How would you promote and support my children in education or development?
How would you teach and encourage my children manners and etiquette?
HOUSEKEEPING (if a nanny housekeeper job)
What do you like about housekeeping?
What is your concept of a clean house?
What are your strengths in your housekeeping job?
What type of food you like to cook?
Are you comfortable with having a (paid) trial with us?
Are you willing to work additional hours and babysitting if/when needed?
How long you could commit to work for us?
Do you have any questions for us?
4) Introduce your baby or children to the candidate and observe the interaction and connection. The children will spend the most time with the child carer after all.
5) Let the candidate know how they did the interview and when you should make a decision.
Ultimately, keep in mind that you wish to take your domestic worker as a partner - as in every relationship, it is important to know each other, and build mutual trust and respect. Show your personality and family situation and also hear the candidate about their life. Talk about your expectations clearly early on and also discuss what the nanny can offer and her circumstances. In order for the placement to work in the long run, the employment should be set up fair and in a way that will keep you both happy and motivated.