Part 1 talked about what care is right for you and as you saw; Nanny-care was the right choice for our family. This part of the article talks about our 3-step selection process that helps to choose from the option one gets within the care of choice.
Part 2 – 3-step selection process
Step 1 – Gathering the initial pool
We started gathering a list of candidates using the following sources and created a list of potential applicants:
- Facebook mom networks
- Agencies in NYC – Rudra agency, Campus caregivers, Abigail Madison
- Word of mouth
If you are choosing alternative care options then start your search with google and facebook mom networks.
Step 2 – Vetting the pool
Step A – Initial screening
We got an overwhelming number of applicants (200+) and it was definitely impossible to interview all these candidates. To make our lives would be a little sane and to expedite the initial screening process we created the initial screening checklist. This helped us to reduce our initial applicant pool by 1/2 and now we were left with 100+ applicants. Still a very daunting task but better than before. We started calling the applicants and after interviewing around 20 applicants we started seeing a trend based on experience and education level of a nanny that wouldn’t meet our “Must Have” criteria. This helped us to eliminate another 50% of our applicant pool.
Step B – In-house interview – First round (1-2 hr)
We invited around 40 candidates to interview in-person; there were days when we had over 6 interviews (questions for this interview are available in the Additional resource section). We were again quickly able to identify trends in types of nannies that wouldn’t work for our family; examples the ones that didn’t enjoy going outdoors, personal hygiene/etiquette or had their own method to madness and were not willing to change/listen. We narrowed down our pool to 10 candidates and asked them to share their references (2 min) and come back for a second round interview.
Step C – In-house interview – Second round (1 day)
Prior to the second round interviews we called the references for our candidates and asked them very specific questions such as:
- What did you like and not like about the nanny?
- How was here work ethic and provide examples?
- What was her philosophy in child development & discipline?
- Why did/was leaving your job?
- Was she flexible in her schedule and how many sick days did she take?
Post our reference conversation we decided not to invite 2 candidate as their philosophy around child development & flexibility in schedule didn’t work for us.
Main purpose of this round was to observe the candidate’s interaction with Siya and us for a day. We looked at things such as:
- Was she attentive to Siya’s needs and listen/follow our guidance and cues?
- Was she an active participant in feeding and playing with Siya?
- What did she bring from her experience in developing Siya?
- Was she pleasant did she have proper hygiene for herself and Siya?
The crucial piece of this round is your & your child’s INTUITION; what does your gutt say? Based on this we actually eliminated 3 candidates because neither Siya (she didn’t go to them) nor us felt warm and fuzzy though they were pleasant and met our criteria.
Step D – In-house – Final Round (1 week)
We invited 5 nannies back for a week long trial and use this opportunity to not only share with her our expectations and see her in action but also build a bond with Siya. Our experience in this round was both eye-opening and fun because we could see how for 3 nannies after day 2 we knew it wouldn’t work for us but for others it just felt like family.
Step 3 – Seal the deal
Midway through our week long test if we liked a nanny we told her that we were potentially interested and we re-visited the salary, salary for overtime, transportation, vacation, taxes and wok permit requirements.
Finally, when all our trials were done, we drafted a contract for our top choice and had our nanny review it and once agreed, we both signed it.
Our journey to find the right care has been no shy of a whirlwind and we glad we came out of it with someone we can trust and consider part of our family. I really hope these tips were somewhat helpful! Feel free to email with any questions, your experience finding care for your child or if you just need a friendly parent to commiserate with.
These are some additional links that talk about different type of cares of your kids and regulations.
- Checklist we created – You can change the criteria per your needs
- List of different types of care and what they are
- List of available day-care and nannies in NYC