In this day of social media and online job searching sites such as www.care.comnannies will often find themselves applying for job openings through these forums. This can be a great tool to use in in your search for a position, however quite often professionalism is lost with short hand and other types of lazy responses. This does not present you as a professional and can decrease your chances of securing the interviews and jobs that you want. It is so important to take time and effort when applying for a nanny position the same way you would with any other job. Let’s take a look at some common mistakes that applicants make and how to avoid them.
There are many Facebook groups for parents and nannies to connect. Whether you are responding to a parents post about an available position, or creating a post of your own that you are seeking a family to nanny for, it is important to do so with care. Often nannies will respond to a post with “pm me” or “I can help” or “I pmed you”. You are applying for the job so the proper thing to do is to take the time to send them a private message rather then expecting them to reach out to you. “I can help” sounds as if you are offering to help a friend move instead of applying for a job. Show your interest by sending a proper message with correct punctuation, Capital letters, and proper sentences rather then a long run on sentence. Introduce yourself, share a little bit about your experience and why you are interested in the position. Be sure that you have read all of the details in the post. If it isn’t a fit for you due to location or schedule there is no need to apply. If a family is seeking a daytime nanny, don’t send them a private message letting them know that you are available for night work. This is a waste of everyone’s time and shows that you did not take into account the needs of the position that is open. If you have sent a professional message to a parent and simply want to let them know, it is acceptable to type a comment. Take the time to type out that you sent a Private Message rather then a “pm”. You’re not making weekend plans with friends on social media, you’re applying for a job. Conduct yourself with professionalism even on Facebook. You will be teaching their children as they grow and they are not going to want to hire someone who cannot spell, or is simply too lazy to take the time to spell things out. You may be a wonderful candidate for the position, but responding in this manner does not let this shine through. Avoid giving names and phone numbers of your references in a public comment. This should go without saying yet it happens all to often. Do not ask what the pay is in a comment. Some nannies will leave a comment simply asking what the pay is and nothing else, this is unacceptable. Take the time to write a little bio to them and you can include your rate in that. If you are truly interested in a position, you will want to make it easy for the family to contact you. This means that you should not leave a comment with just a link to an agency, or a screenshot of any kind. You may share a little bit about the agency and include the link, but don’t make the families have to go hunting for your information.
Some of the common mistakes that take place on Care are very similar. Nannies will type “Check out my page” or “I’m interested” or “I’m a great fit!” If you are interested then type up a proper message. It is never ok to apply to a job of any kind with one sentence. Parents receive many applications, which means they want some information in the application rather then having to search for it. Leave out personal details such as your age, that you don’t have children but want to some day, that you are single, married, or divorced, and anything else of this nature. This has nothing to do with your experience as a nanny and quite honestly is a little weird. Whether you are 22 or 55 is not their concern. Simply list your qualifications such as first aid, CPR, elementary education degree, and share a little about your experience as a nanny and what you are looking for.
Remember that you are a professional and should always conduct yourself as such including job searching online and on social media. Pay attention to detail and exercise common sense. If a position clearly states that you must be comfortable with dogs it would be silly to apply saying that you are allergic to dogs. Avoid commenting on the same job post multiple times. This can become annoying and bothersome. Once you have sent a professional message and properly let them know that you have done so leave it at that. Parents can be overwhelmed in the process of finding a nanny and they will get back to you when they are able.
Be the professional that you are beginning with how you apply to potential jobs! Never cut corners when it comes to this. Enjoy the Process!
By: Anne-Marie Ferraro