Parents, when developing or updating a nanny job description, have a clear picture of what’s included. I’m reading a lot of descriptions that include terms like “We’d love someone to pitch-in with keeping the house tidy.” or “It would be a plus if you could take on some extra tasks when you have time.” or “This isn’t required but it would be a big help.” Vague language leads to misaligned expectations, a stressful employment relationship, and neither side getting their needs met. To hire a well-suited candidate or continue smoothly with your current caregiver, make sure you’re doing three things.
Define subjective terms. Phrases like “keep tidy”, “straighten up”, “when you have time” can and usually do have different meanings for different people. Define what you mean by using real world examples so candidates or your current nanny understands what you’re looking for.
Decide if a task is required or not. “It would be nice”, “it would be a big plus”, “if you have time” and similar phrases are confusing. Is the task a requirement of the job or not? If the candidate or your nanny says no thank you, are you really fine with that? If they say no, who’s going to end up taking on the task over the long term? That middle-of-the-road space is uncomfortable for employees. It feels like you’re asking for a favor rather than making a work request and they’re left to navigate that personal / professional minefield. If you’re looking for flexibility and a pitch-in attitude on the job, focus in on those traits in your description and again, use real world examples to define what those traits look like to you.
Let them know the pay increases for additional tasks. We all get the bigger the job description, the higher the pay. However, when only the basics are outlined in the job description and other tasks are only vaguely referred to, it leaves candidates and employees wondering if you’re paying extra for those things or if you feel they’re all included in the base wage because they’re not part of the stated, permanent job description. If you want extra tasks to be seriously considered by candidates or your current caregiver, let them know the basic job description is X however, there’s an opportunity to take on additional tasks for a higher wage. Be ready to define those tasks and the corresponding rate increase.
Your job description is not just something you use in your search. It becomes part of your agreement with your nanny. While it doesn’t need to (and realistically can’t) contain every single task your caregiver will take on, it should be detailed enough so both parties have the same expectations around responsibilities, performance, and pay.
Need help writing your job description for your search or updating your job description for a current employee? Send an email to info@NannyCareHub.com for more information on how I can help.