Now that you have found the right nanny for your family you will want to plan ahead for her first day so that you will both be prepared and off to a successful working relationship! Starting any new job can bring both excitement and a touch of anxiety. Being prepared with knowledge to get off on the right foot will ensure open communication and a comfortable work environment for your nanny.
One of the first things you will want to do is leave a detailed list of contact information. This should include both of the parents cell phone numbers, work phone numbers, home phone number, home address, the phone number for the children’s school, the school address. In the event of a minor or major emergency you will want to leave additional contacts in case you are not able to be reached. This list can include local relatives, friends, neighbors, anyone you would want your nanny to reach out to after trying to first reach you. When leaving neighbors phone numbers it is a good idea to leave the address with it. Pediatrician phone number and address, including both emergency and non emergency lines, and the poison control phone number. If you have pets in the home list the vet information as well in the event of an emergency. It is very important to have a signed medical release form giving permission for your nanny to request medical attention on behalf of your child, as well as having her name and contact information on the pediatrician list. If your children are school age be sure that your nanny is on the pick up list, along with any carpool signs or information that she may need.
If it is at all possible to be home with your nanny for the first full day it is a great way to get to know each other while also showing her around so that she can be acclimated with her new work environment. Give your nanny a full tour of the house. Show her where the thermostat is, where the washer and dryer is, and any other appliances that she may be using. Show her how to work the outdoor cameras, how to work the remote, and where the baby monitor is. While you are discussing house related topics, be sure to let her know what days the lawn, pool, pest control, any other regular maintenance people, and cleaners are expected. This will prevent your nanny from being alarmed by a sudden presence in or around the home!
Discuss your children’s schedule in detail with your nanny. The children’s daily routines, nap times and routines, and any classes or activities that they may have. Show her where the diapers, wipes, bottles, medicine, thermometer, band-aids, and first aid kit are. Basically anything around the house that she will be using be sure to let her know where to find it! You will want to show your nanny around the neighborhood so that she knows of the close by parks and places to take walks. Introduce if possible or tell your nanny about any children in the neighborhood that your children are friends with. If there are other nannies in the neighborhood let her know so that they can have play dates with the little ones. Your nanny will need to be able to lock up and get back in the house when going for walks and outings. Give her the house key, garage door opener, alarm code, garage code, show her how the alarm works. Discuss with her how she should come and go from the house so that she can lock up and be able to get back in during her daily routine. Some families prefer for the nanny to ring the doorbell in the morning upon arriving, others prefer to go about their morning routine and have the nanny let herself in. Let her know which one you prefer so that she is comfortable with what to do when arriving to work. Show her where she can park her car.
It is a really nice idea to order lunch for you and your nanny on the first day. Take a break together during nap time and get to know each other. This will make her comfortable and feel at ease talking with you. Some things to discuss are ideas and locations for outings, taking photos (can she take pictures of your children’s activities and share them with you?) Create a log book for gas mileage, time sheets, childcare notes, or if you prefer discuss and choose which app you would like to use for these daily logs.
Congratulations on the start of a wonderful working relationship! The more tools and information your nanny is supplied with, the more smoothly starting to work with your family will be for both the nanny and for you!
We wish you much success and happiness!
By: Anne-Marie Ferraro