How to Interview a Nanny: Screening Applicants

Narrowing down candidates

Let's face it, interviews aren't fun

Hiring a nanny is a big decision, and you want the best person for the job. Here are some tips to help guide you through the interview process.

Your newfound popularity

Start your nanny search by posting a job on Care.com. Once the responses start to roll in, focus on candidates who rate well in Care Match, our site feature that shows you how well applicants meet your needs. Begin with your top Care Matches and start screening! Tip: Our easy tools like selecting Favorites and sending quick "No Thank You" messages make it easy to stay organized.

Five things to consider when screening

1. Availability. Do your schedules match up? Be realistic - if she can't stay past 5pm and you don't get home until 6pm, you should move on to other applicants.

2. Skills. From first aid training to homework help to crafts, look at what skills a caregiver offers. Which are important to your family?

3. Experience. Make sure the caregiver has relevant experience for your kids' needs. Experience with newborns and cooking? Welcome to the shortlist! 

4. Proximity. Having a caregiver who lives nearby can make all the difference with last-minute help on sick days or snow days. Plus, less traffic delays. Well, maybe not in L.A.

5. Cover letter. A cover letter gives you a glimpse into your potential nanny's true personality. Trust your intuition. First impressions aren't everything, but they are important.

Stay organized (and sane)

As you narrow down your list, remember to stay organized. Use our simple hiring tools to make life easier. For instance:

  • Label your favorite caregivers for quick reference
  • Send a quick "No Thank You" note to applicants who don't fit your needs
  • Use the notes field to remind you of details throughout the hiring process

Good news - now you're ready to move on to phone interviews!

Next: Phone Interviews »
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