Norland recommends that the interview process includes a telephone or virtual (such as Skype or Facetime) conversation followed by a formal first interview and then a trial working with the family. In terms of the formal interview, plan a day when (if possible) the children are at home so that they can meet the nanny and vice versa. The way in which the nanny talks to and approaches the children will give you an insight into how well they are going to interact with your children. We recommend allowing plenty of time to find the right nanny for your family.
Based on our experience, the following information provides a guide as to how you may wish to approach the face to face interview. At the start of the interview, it is important to introduce the children to the nanny and outline what your expectations are, including talking about the children’s weekly routines and other interests (ballet, football, crafts, outdoors etc). Ask questions which are relevant both to the nanny’s experience and to your own expectations. Give the nanny a tour of your home and the opportunity to spend some time with the children which you can observe.
- Why did you want to be a nanny?
- What ages of children have you worked with?
- Tell me about your past experiences with children and the activities that you enjoy doing with children at home and outside of the home.
- What would you offer on a weekly menu for the children? (take into account here that the nanny will not have the benefit of your child’s likes and dislikes at this stage)
- What sort of activities would you plan for the children on a weekly basis?
- Ask the Nanny to show you past testimonials and any other information they may have in their portfolio.
- Talk about your parenting style and ask for the nanny’s comments on this. Discuss with the Nanny ways in which you would like them to share information with you (e.g. a nanny diary) and see what suggestions they have for this.
- Ask about any additional qualifications and training.
- Find out if the nanny is familiar with the area you live in.
- Give the nanny an opportunity to ask questions at the end of the interview – this will help them in their decision if the post is offered to them and can also give you a useful insight into their priorities.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- Did the children get on well with the nanny?
- Would you feel happy having this person in your home and possibly living with you? (Remember that if the nanny is going to be residential you can’t expect that they will return home every weekend.)
- Could you comfortably discuss any problems / issues with the nanny?
- Did you feel that the nanny had enough relevant experience? Did they have some good ideas around the weekly menus and activity plans?
- Did the nanny seem well organised and enthusiastic?
- Did the nanny seem empathetic to your parenting style? Were you happy with the discussion you had around communication?
Once you have interviewed your nanny please contact the Agency to let us know how it went – would you like to arrange another interview, a trial or make them an offer? If you would like to proceed to a formal offer stage, Norland Agency can support you by negotiating terms including salary and working hours and providing template contracts.