If you've decided to use online nanny services to find a nanny for your children, then you may have made a very wise decision. There are many benefits to using online nanny agencies to find available nannies. While you will be responsible for interviewing prospective candidates, you will most likely have greater control over the entire process of nanny selection and employment.
Choosing an online nanny service can save you a great deal of money. It is common for nanny agencies with physical offices to charge hundreds, and sometimes thousands, of dollars for a nanny placement. An online nanny agency, in contrast, will normally charge anywhere from $75 to $150 for you to have access to all their candidates.
Online nanny services may also give you a larger and more diverse range of candidates. These online agencies accept candidates from all over the country-sometimes candidates based overseas will also be on their books. If your candidate's physical location is not of concern to you, then online nanny agencies will give you the most in choice.
Of course, using an online nanny service will make you do some of the work yourself, in exchange for the lower registration cost and access to the agency's full database. Depending on the agency's system of security and amount of resources they provide, you may need to take some practical steps to protect your identity.
An online nanny service may or may not offer the service of doing criminal background checks on their candidates. Even if they do not offer this service, you should make sure to do one yourself prior to offering a nanny her contract and letting her into your home and the lives of your children.
If your online nanny services do not provide a secure, in-company email system, where both your name and email address are kept private, you should consider setting up a free and anonymous email account solely for the purpose of carrying out your interviews. This is easily done online, using, for example Gmail or Hotmail.
When interviewing a prospective nanny, you may consider holding your first interview with her in a public place, rather than in your home. If it is a good fit, and she has cleared the background check, you can always invite her to your home for a second or final interview, where she can also meet your children and see the home in which she may be living.
If you are interviewing candidates by telephone, consider setting up a Skype account in which your name is not revealed. This way, if the candidate also has access to Skype, you can see her face to face, even if only through a computer screen. This will give you a better idea of her physical appearance and body language, which is also very important in the interview process.
A good online nanny agency should have search features to help you sort out candidates who clearly would not suit your needs. You should be able to search for your nanny using criteria such as availability, full or part-time, live-in or live-out, education level, and so on. It is not much use to you to simply get thousands of profiles with no organizational system in place.
Finally, an online nanny service should also clearly and easily provide contact details of the principal members of the company, where the company is based, and a full disclosure as to how the company does business. Disputes with agencies, while rare, do occur. It is entirely within your rights to know who you are doing business with.