The process of hiring a nanny for your child can be overwhelming because you will be inviting this person into your home and life, depending on them for child care, possibly for years.
You can gain valuable insight into interviewees’ personalities and approaches to child care by knowing what questions to ask. The fact that this person will be in your home and watch your children requires that you feel at ease around them. They should also be someone you respect and trust.

For the majority of parents, the process of interviewing and hiring a nanny involves three steps: prescreening the applicant pool, speaking with potential candidates over the phone, and setting up an in-person interview. Additionally, you might want to schedule a playdate for your kid and each finalist to observe their interactions.
Although there are some topics that are off-limits (more on that later), there is no such thing as asking too many questions when hiring a caregiver for your child.

How to organize an interview for a Nanny

Phone Questions

  • Describe your family and introduce yourself.
  • To confirm that you and the employer have the same expectations, review the job description. You’ll want to confirm things like the location, working hours, start date, and salary, for instance.
  • Mention any important details about your family that the candidate should be aware of. Do you own animals? Does your child have any unique needs or medical conditions?
  • The purpose of the phone interview is to learn enough about the applicant to decide whether you’d like to move forward with an in-person interview after those details have been established.

In-person interview

  • Plan a face-to-face interview with the candidate if you feel positive about them. This will allow you to ask more in-depth questions to gauge the nanny’s communication style, whether it be at your home or in a public place like a park or coffee shop. Having your kid present will allow you to observe how the candidate interacts with them.
  • Examine any fundamental inquiries you were unable to make during the phone interview.
  • Ask some more in-depth or open-ended questions to better understand the candidate’s personalities and observe their body language.
  • Ask the candidate if they have any questions after the interview is over and inform them of the next steps in the hiring process.
Nanny Interview Questions

Nanny Interview Questions

1. Tell me about yourself

Give only pertinent information about your life and try not to go into too much detail.
Think about:

  • your knowledge
  • Your aptitude
  • strengths and interests

as they apply to this specific nanny position. Prior to your interview, learn as much as you can about the nanny position so that you can tailor your responses.

2. What ages did the kids you looked after in the past range in age?

The purpose of this question is to determine the candidate’s level of child-care experience. This will enable you to assess their level of experience in looking after kids of your child’s age. What to look for in an effective answer:

  • Knowledge of raising children
  • Diverse experience working with various age groups
  • Ability to work with various age groups

Sample Answer – “I have experience looking after kids of different ages in my previous positions. I am comfortable taking care of kids of any age, but I have the most experience with younger kids between the ages of two and four.”

3. Why did you decide to become a nanny?

In order to ensure that the candidate is committed to caring for your children, this question aims to determine whether they are passionate about childcare. What to look for in an effective response:

  • commitment to childcare
  • knowledge of caring for children
  • dedication to their job

Sample Answer – “I love kids, so I became a nanny. I come from a large family and have three younger siblings, so I’ve always helped my parents with their upbringing. I wanted to pursue a career where I could play with them and watch them learn and develop because I loved doing that.”

4. What skills do you possess that would make you a good nanny?

This question seeks to determine the candidate’s educational background and any pertinent credentials. What to look for in an effective response:

  • First Aid and CPR training
  • Formal credentials, such as a child care diploma, degree, or certificate
  • Knowledge of how their skills relate to being a nanny

Sample Answer – “I finished the Canadian Child Care Federation’s online course on child care last year. I learned about child development and how to deal with issues related to children’s health and safety. In order to ensure the safety and well-being of your children, I recently renewed my First Aid and CPR certification.”

5. What aspect of your previous nanny jobs did you enjoy the most?

In order to make sure the candidate is enthusiastic and passionate about working with your children, the purpose of this question is to determine whether the candidate enjoys being a nanny.

What to look for in an effective response:

  • Kid-centered response
  • working as a nanny before
  • Knowledge of the role

Sample Answer – “I spent four years working as a nanny for two kids under the age of five in my previous position. Since I am so enthusiastic about learning, I loved using them to practice speaking and writing letters. It was very rewarding for me to watch them develop over the years.”

6. What types of activities do you enjoy doing with the kids in your care?

This question is intended to test the candidate’s understanding of kid-friendly activities. What to look for in an effective response:

  • Knowledge of carrying out entertaining and instructive activities with kids
  • Understanding of a wide range of activities
  • The ability to include new activities in their routine

Sample Answer – “The kids I used to work with and I both enjoy art and music. We would paint, draw, or color while listening to music after they finished their homework. They also learned to play the toy piano we had, and each week we would work on a new song. We put on concerts or art exhibits for the parents when they got home so that they could participate in our activities as well.”

7. Are you at ease carrying out household duties?

Finding out which household chores the candidate feels confident handling will help you determine whether they are a good fit. What to look for in an effective response:

  • Knowing what needs to be done
  • Ability to carry out simple household duties
  • Knowledge of how to carry out household duties

Sample Answer – “Since the kids are my primary concern as a nanny, I’d be happy to handle any household duties that meet their needs. This may entail preparing food for them, tidying up after them, or, if necessary, washing their clothing.”

8. What methods of punishment do you employ when a child is acting out?

The purpose of this question is to determine whether the candidate’s approach to child discipline aligns with your parenting philosophy. What to look for in an effective response:

  • Understanding of controlling tantrums
  • Understanding the proper way to respond to tantrums
  • Discipline methods that are similar to your own

Sample Answer – “I find that, depending on the intensity of the tantrum, ignoring it works best, unless they are physically harming themselves or another person. Ignoring a tantrum makes sure I’m not encouraging kids’ bad behavior, and they usually stop more quickly. I’ll talk to the child later on about how they’re feeling and explain why the behavior was inappropriate.”

9. What characteristics do you believe a nanny should possess?

The purpose of this question is to determine whether the applicant shares your views on what makes a good nanny. What to look for in an effective response:

  • Knowledge of the role
  • Strong argument
  • Comparable list of attributes

Here is an illustration of a solid response:

Sample Answer – “A good nanny, in my opinion, should enjoy working with kids because they frequently reflect our feelings. For the family to be able to rely on them, a good nanny should also be reliable, well-organized, and punctual. As long as the nanny does not endanger the children, nannies shouldn’t be afraid to have fun with them.”

10. When taking care of kids, do you prefer a certain age range?

Based on your children’s childcare preferences, this question aims to determine whether the candidate is a good fit for your kids. What to look for in an effective response:

  • Ability to work with people of different ages
  • Preference for the target age group Experience working with a range of ages

Here is an illustration of a solid response:

Sample Answer – “I have experience working with kids of different ages, and I don’t favor any in particular. I like working with young kids because they are playful and inquisitive, and I like working with older kids because their personalities are beginning to emerge more.”

11. Have you ever had to deal with an emergency in childcare?

The purpose of this question is to determine the candidate’s ability to function under pressure and handle challenging circumstances. It also enables you to gauge how much work experience they have. What to look for in an effective response:

  • Knowledge of handling childcare emergencies
  • Well-suited to working under pressure
  • Knowledge of emergency childcare procedures

Sample Answer – “I used to work with a kid who had a life-threatening peanut allergy and always carried an EpiPen. The principal called to inform me that he was experiencing anaphylactic shock as I was en route to pick him up from school. They searched everywhere but couldn’t find his EpiPen, so I rushed to the school and used the one I was carrying as well. I went with him to the hospital, where the school had already called an ambulance and waited until his parents arrived.”

12. Are you seeking a long-term relationship with one family?

This question seeks to determine whether the candidate’s plans align with your immediate or long-term requirements. What to look for in an effective response:

  • Plans that meet your requirements
  • Thoughtful career aspirations
  • Ability to change to suit your needs

Here is an illustration of a solid response:

Sample Answer – “Yes, I prefer to live with one family for an extended period of time so I can get to know the kids well. I enjoy staying with families for at least a few years because one of my favorite aspects of being a nanny is being able to watch the children grow.”

13. How accommodating is your schedule?

This question is intended to test the candidate’s adaptability and availability to see if it matches your requirements. What to look for in an effective response:

  • Adaptive scheduling to your needs
  • The capacity to adapt when necessary
  • Realizing that flexibility is a necessity for nannies

Here is an illustration of a solid response:

Sample Answer – “I am very flexible with my availability as I am looking for a full-time position. Depending on your needs, I can modify my schedule to watch your kids in the mornings, at night, or on weekends. I’d like to take two days off each week to spend with my family, but I’m open to other arrangements.”

14. What did an average day in your previous position entail?

This question seeks to gauge the candidate’s background and comprehension of the position. What to look for in an effective response:

  • Knowledge of the role
  • Working as a nanny
  • A planned schedule that is centered on the kids

Sample Answer – “In my previous position, I lived with the family and spent three years looking after their five-year-old. Making breakfast, assisting her with getting dressed, seeing to it that she brushed her teeth, and brushing her hair were always the first things I did after waking her up and getting her ready for the day. I later drove her to school and completed any necessary errands, like grocery shopping. I cleaned the house and made dinner while she was at school. We read stories and played games after I picked her up from school until her parents arrived.”

15. What are the main difficulties faced by nannies, and how do you deal with them?

The purpose of this question is to gauge the candidate’s capacity for dealing with pressure. What to look for in an effective response:

  • Strong ability to solve problems
  • Positive attitude when facing the role’s difficulties
  • Willingness to overcome typical difficulties

Sample Answer – “Learning what each child and parent require in order to provide for the kids effectively is, in my opinion, the biggest challenge of being a nanny. Making adjustments to meet the needs and expectations of each family can be challenging. Forming a relationship with the parents and kids through open communication is the best way to handle this. I can better understand a family’s needs by probing a lot of questions at the outset so that I can modify my care as necessary.”

16. Are you able to adapt to various childcare approaches?

This question seeks to determine how well the applicant comprehends various childcare approaches and how to use them in various contexts. What to look for in an effective response:

  • Ability to modify their childcare approach
  • Understanding of various childcare methods or styles
  • The capacity to adapt to various environments

Sample Answer – “I am comfortable adjusting to any childcare approach that best suits the needs of the parents. Some of these approaches include positive parenting and the use of reward systems. I do find it simpler to change my parenting style to keep my kids comfortable because they will be accustomed to it.”

What to consider after a nanny interview

Make notes on more than just the applicant’s responses to your questions during the in-person interview. After the interview, write down your initial thoughts and evaluate your gut reaction. When choosing child care, if there’s ever a time to trust your gut, it’s when.
The following factors should also be taken into account when determining whether a potential nanny will be a good fit for your family.

  • “Does this prospective nanny get along with my kid?” – If the applicant passes your preliminary screening, a crucial component of the nanny interview should involve some face time with your child. Does the applicant come across as being kind, patient, and focused? Do they feel at ease handling and entertaining your child? Although your baby may be experiencing some stranger anxiety, it’s not necessarily a deal-breaker if she is crying or acting disinterested. Instead, how the candidate responds to the situation is more telling.
  • “Did this prospective babysitter ask the right questions?” – Another way to determine whether or not a candidate will fit in with your family is to look at the questions they have prepared. A lack of any questions (or comments) can also be revealing.
  • “Did we get along well?” You don’t have to become best friends, but you do need to feel comfortable discussing potentially sensitive topics. Since you’ll need to communicate frequently for this arrangement to succeed, the nanny you choose should feel just as at ease around you as they do with your child. Do they make good conversations? They laughed a lot, did they not? Did it seem like they would fill you in on all of your child’s mischief?
  • Was this potential nanny’s communication ability strong? Red flags should be raised by poor communication skills, lack of eye contact, and disobedience to your rules. Observe whether they speak and smile when they speak to both you and your child. These spoken and nonverbal cues show whether you have found a nanny who is friendly, skilled in communication, and experienced.
  • “Do they seem trustworthy?” Even with a valid excuse, being late for the interview could indicate that they have trouble keeping to a schedule.

Finally, plan a trial run. Giving your top candidate a tryout in child care is worth a few days’ pay. This could last a few days, a week, or even two weeks, giving you both enough time to gauge how things feel. To get a sense of how a day develops, make sure you (or your partner) are present for at least a portion of each day. Is the individual meeting your expectations?
Test their ability to listen to your advice and incorporate it by making some suggestions. After the trial period is over, make the nanny an offer if you still have faith in her abilities.

Related: Mcdonalds Interview Questions

where i can get certified as a nanny

The American Red Cross offers quick, easy, and certified babysitting training.

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