Nanny Background Check: What You Need to Know Before Hiring Caregivers

Are you thinking about hiring a nanny?

Getting a nanny is one of the best decisions you can make for your family. It takes less pressure off you as a parent, ensures that your children get all the attention and care they need, and creates a better home environment as a whole.

But, you can’t hire just anyone for the job! It’s one thing to hire an extended family member to babysit every once in a while and a completely different story to hire a long-term caretaker for your children and your home.

A nanny is someone who needs to be able to devote their time to your family. They should have experience in everything from how to burp a baby to the best way to get a stain out of clothes and furniture.

Most importantly, they need to be a professional that you can trust. The best way to know for sure whether a nanny you’re thinking about hiring is the right choice is to do a nanny background check. It may sound a bit excessive, but it’s absolutely worth the effort.

Here are a few things you need to know about a nanny before you hire him/her to watch over your children.

1. Do They Have a Criminal Record?

Everyone has a handful of past mistakes, but no reputable nanny has a criminal record. Anything more than a traffic violation is a serious red flag to make note of.

Actually, even a few speeding tickets may be the difference between hiring one nanny versus another if you need this person to drive your kids to/from school and extracurricular activities.

But, what you’re really looking for in terms of a criminal record is anything like a history of drug charges, theft, or domestic abuse. The last thing you want is for your children to end up in the hands of someone with a dark past. People do change, but the wellbeing of your family is not worth taking any risks.

2. Have They Been Fired from a Job Before?

Maybe no criminal record comes up when you do a nanny background check but you do find out that a candidate has been fired from one or two of their previous jobs. This is another red flag worth paying careful attention to.

You can choose to bring up job termination in your interviews, or you can move on from a certain candidate altogether when you see this. It may be worth getting the whole story, though.

Discovering the reason for a termination and how the situation was handled allows you to get a much better sense of a nanny’s work ethic. It can also be what starts to build trust between you and a candidate if they’re transparent with you and willing to answer all your questions.

3. How Long Have They Been a Nanny?

Keep in mind that just because a person has a clean criminal record and good work history doesn’t mean they’re prepared to be a nanny. Take the time to talk to your top candidates about how long they’ve been a nanny and why they wanted to pursue this career in the first place.

Don’t hesitate to get into specifics. See if a candidate has experience working with children in the same age group as your little ones. Ask them if they’re able to handle household tasks in addition to child care, and talk to them about their level of comfort working with children who have special needs.

Even if your children don’t fall into that category, getting all the specifics gives you a better idea of who you’re about to welcome into your home. Talking about work experience also helps you cross-reference what your official background check says.

4. Do They Have All the Skills You’re Looking for?

The next thing to find out about a nanny candidate is whether or not they possess special skills that relate to being a caretaker. These include things like:

  • the ability to perform CPR
  • strong working knowledge of First Aid practices
  • the ability to swim
  • the ability to cook (more than pasta and sandwiches)

An additional perk might be the ability to speak a language other than English if you want your children to pick up on the second language. A nanny’s experience working with pets or taking care of elderly people should also be taken into consideration if these things apply to your household, too.

5. Can They Provide a List of References?

Although the needs of your home are unique from that of any other, it is smart to get a list of references from a nanny. This helps you get a full understanding of their quality of work.

Reaching out to references clears up any doubt you may have about hiring someone and provides a whole lot more detail regarding their ability to fit the role of a nanny. It also tells you more about their personality.

Remember, you want to be able to connect to your new nanny on some level beyond establishing a professional relationship. Take the time to reach out to the references provided or at least contact the agency that a nanny represents. Agencies like A Nanny on the Net can help you find a great nanny in a short amount of time and make sure they have a clean background.

Get the Nanny Background Check You Need

Now that you understand just how important a nanny background check is, you have to figure out how to do one! You don’t have to be a cop or detective to run a background check on someone. All you have to do is find the right resource to help you do a basic check before you welcome someone into your home.

Check out our site to get the process started and move forward in finding the perfect nanny!