Whether you’re a family or a nanny, it has to be safety first. And we take on and offline protection very seriously.
If we boil down the nanny and family relationship, it’s essentially inviting a childcare professional into a family’s home to look after their most precious possession – their children. With that in mind, neither party should take anything for granted.
Here we offer a guide to help both families and nannies minimise the risks when either appointing a new nanny or taking a new nanny position.
Safety first for an online agency
Remember, we’re not a traditional nanny agency. We are an online agency, and our expertise lies in helping you search for a nanny or family. To bring you significant cost savings, we pass on the responsibility of ID and document checking to the end-user – nannies and families.
Here we provide a detailed breakdown of the steps you need to follow to alleviate concerns about the misrepresentation of experience, skills and identity.
Tip: Do check our Terms and Conditions to understand the scope of our operations.
No system is full proof. But by following this guide, you can significantly close the gap to any concerns you may have.
Safety first: Identity verification with AoN and YOTI
We partner with YOTI – experts in online ID verification.
If a nanny profile shows ID verified, you know we’ve matched their face to a formal piece of ID.
During the sign-up process, we offer all our nannies the opportunity to verify their ID. It’s a free service that’s simple to do and takes just a couple of minutes.
Here’s some recent feedback from one of our brilliant nannies:
Nannies: If you didn’t ID verify at initial sign-up, you can do it within you AoN dashboard.
Families: If a nanny you are interested in isn’t ID verified, you can ask them to complete this free step as part of your getting to the first interview. Or send us an email at email@example.com, and we’ll arrange that with your potential nanny.
NB: At the moment, we only ask this step of nannies. In the future, families will also be able to complete ID verification sign-up.
Tip: If you do not use our YOTI ID verification. We strongly suggest you see and preferably take a copy of a formal piece of identification, e.g. Driving license or passport. It best to view the documents early on and then ask for copies at the final stages of confirming the position.
Safety First: Ask for References
Check out our Welcoming a New Nanny blog post. This ties in nicely with Safety First as it recommends both families and nannies request two references. Yes, that’s two from families too – it really does show a nanny you are taking the appoint very seriously and respectfully.
If new families and nannies struggle with previous nannies/employers, think around the problem. Identify people who know you, what you’re about and how you work.
Top tip: Families, don’t be shy about sharing previous nannies as references. Allowing a nanny to speak to a previously employed nanny is a confident move that shows you want the relationship to work. It can also help nanny get some immediate insight into what works best for your family and whether they are up to the task. Better that than realising four weeks into a new role.
So many people take comfort in a reference but then don’t follow up and confirm them.
I’m not going to labour this other than to say simple call will go a long way to legitimising someone’s character, abilities and experience.
The general rule of thumb: Get them in early and then follow up on them when you’ve whittled it down to the front runners.
Just like the references, if someone says they have childcare or paediatric first aid qualifications, an Enhanced DBS or any other certificates – ask to see them! They should be super proud to show them off. After all, they’ve worked for them!
Document sharing tools
In the not too distant future, we will offer an in-site secure document sharing facility. But for now, we recommend using WhatsApp.
Within the WhatsApp app, you can attach documents and, providing you have the end-users mobile number; you can be confident they benefit from end-to-end encryption.
Safety first when meeting
We also cover his in the Welcoming a New Nanny post – please do give that blog post a read too.
Our recommendation – especially now with COVID – is the first get together is either a call or on a video conference platform like zoom. Use this moment to make it clear that you want to see or share documentation at the first face-to-face meet up.
If you’re not comfortable with a virtual meet up, then the first face-to-face should be in a public place like a coffee shop. And, most importantly, both parties should let family and friends know that the meeting is taking place.
At that first face-to-face, ask the nanny to bring their accreditations. Get those out of the way nice and early. And if there are any gaps, like Enhanced DBS Checks, you can get that process going straight away.
Both parties should bring ID with them to share at the first meeting. We recommend that before any home visits, complete your ID checks.
Recommendation: We use Personnel Check for EDBS check you can get access to a discount, if you have an AoN profile, here. And we use Safe and Sound for paediatric first aid. Again, discounted with an AoN profile here.
- Take nothing for granted
- Don’t be afraid to ask: Make it clear early on what you’ll be asking
- Always check documents
- Receive and follow up on references
- Be wise with meetups!
This all sounds dramatic, but we all know bad things can happen. With a bit of planning, we can all significantly reduce the risks associated with meeting new people.
And when you’ve found the right nanny or family – it will all have been worth it!
Always report it
If something isn’t right or is mispresented – report it. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for inaccurate profiles. And obviously to the authorities for more serious matters.
Good luck with your search and do come back to us if you think we can help you at any point in the process.