questions to ask nanny interview

Nanny Interview Guide for Agencies: Must-Ask Questions

This small guide covers every aspect of the agency nanny hiring process. Every question you have about the hiring process will be answered in the following sections:

  • Nanny basics- what do people look for in nannies?
  • Hiring process- How should you go about hiring nannies for your agency?
  • The nanny interview- What questions should you ask?
  • Shortlisting and hiring- questions to ask yourself

Nanny Basics for Agencies

Here are the basics you should know before hiring nannies for your agency. Answers to these will form a foundation for your hiring process.

What Do People Look for In A Nanny?


Parents want a person they can trust with their children. They will want to know the nanny inside out as a person: their character, background, experience with children, how they were sourced, their motivations, etc. As an agency, it would help if you structured your recruitment process to fish out all this information and have it ready for the client.

Training and Experience

Parents would want a nanny who is either formally trained or has experience as a child caregiver. Also, most parents would like to know if the nanny has children of their own or has worked as a nanny before. What formal training have they gone through? A nanny is involved in a child’s development as long as they are under their care.
Parents hire nannies because they possess the necessary skills and experience to develop their children properly. Sometimes parents choose a nanny over parental care because they lack the skills or time to be involved. For instance, some prefer a nanny who can do potty training, motoring skills, etc.


Being reliable is the number one personality trait needed to be a nanny. Parents demand a nanny who always does what is expected of them and is available for the children. As you look for candidates for your nanny agency, please find out how they performed in their past jobs or their general attitude about work.
You can easily find out if a nanny will let their employer down, even during an interview or introduction to their place of work. Signs of an unreliable nanny can be as simple as dodging simple questions regarding their past performance or ignoring simple instructions early on. Of course, you should also do background checks and talk to past employers if available.

Good Communicators

Parents who go for a full-time nanny instead of a babysitter or daycare service want a nanny who can communicate clearly. A parent’s worst experience with a nanny is being kept in the dark, especially when something goes wrong. A test or assessment of communication skills is therefore crucial in a nanny agency recruitment process.
While it is vital to gauge a nanny’s communication skills from the start, it is also important to note that personality traits, background, and environment can also affect one’s abilities to communicate. For example, you wouldn’t want to quickly dismiss a nanny who is not fluent in English if they are good at their job. You will find that many nannies you onboard speak English as a second language.

Organized and Time Conscious People

Parents want nannies who know how to stay organized and observe time. They expect them to keep on top of everything to do with the kids under their care and sometimes go beyond their primary duties. Often, a parent who hires a nanny is already struggling with keeping everything in order, and they expect their nanny to help them stay organized.

Relationship with Children (Chemistry)

Obliviously, every parent wants to get a nanny who can form a great relationship with the children under their care. To have good chemistry with kids, nannies have to be people who love being around children and know how to make them feel safe and happy around them. Nanny agencies should use their skills and experience to pick candidates with these highly sought-after abilities.

A Professional Person

Even though they’ll be treated like family members wherever they work, your nannies must understand that theirs is a job and what it means to be a professional. They should be people who can recognize boundaries and also alter their behavior to suit their environment. For instance, no employer would appreciate having a nanny who likes to gossip.

What are the benefits of a Baby Nanny?

What are the benefits of a Baby Nanny
Nannies play many vital roles as caregivers of the little ones. One would argue that nannies are third parents to the children under their care. Here are some of the direct benefits of hiring a baby nanny:
Early care– Nannies can step in and provide babies the care and attention they need for parents who are too busy or inexperienced with parenting. For instance, nannies know how to bathe babies of all ages, feed them, and ensure they are always comfortable.
Child development – Nannies are either professionally trained or have natural skills that help them ensure children develop well. A nanny will do potty training and help children go through all motoring stages, speech training, sleep training, and other essential skills as they develop. Some nannies are even trained to teach children necessary life skills such as manners and dining etiquette.
Bonding– Nannies will be there for the baby and ensure they form a healthy bond with the people around them.
Exclusive focus on your child/children– unlike babysitters or daycare centers, nannies are solely focused on the baby(s) under their care, thus ensuring they have the attention and care they need.
Tailored care– Nannies are much more flexible than babysitters and daycare centers. They can offer care tailored to a child’s needs like arranging play dates, taking them for a walk, or to the amusement park.
The above points are just a few reasons parents choose to hire nannies instead of babysitters or daycare services. Such parents are ready to make the financial sacrifice to get the best nanny, so it’s your job as an agency to find the right people.

How to Structure A Nanny Interview?

A typical nanny interview should be broken down into three parts. The first part of the interview involves going through the nanny’s qualifications and experience. The second part will include asking the nanny questions regarding the job to verify their suitability. The third part of the interview involves matching the nanny to an employer and assessing their performance on the job.

Questions To Ask A Potential Nanny About Training, Experience, And Background

  • What is your education level?
  • Do you have any formal education as a nanny, and if yes, where did you get trained, and what certifications do you possess?
  • Do you have an experience as a nanny or child caregiver?
  • If yes, where have you worked before and for how long?
  • Why did you leave your last job?
  • Are you fluent in English or any other language?
  • Would you be willing to go through extra nanny training with the agency?

Questions to Ask A Potential Nanny About the Position

Questions to Ask A Potential Nanny About the Position

  • Why did you choose this as your career?
  • Why do you want this position?
  • Why did you choose our agency?
  • What motivates you as a person caring for young children?
  • What do you enjoy most working with and around babies?
  • What is the most important quality needed to be considered a top nanny?
  • How would you go about working with a problematic employer as a nanny?
  • Are there aspects of being a nanny you dislike or do not enjoy?
  • What would you require from your employer to help you with your job as a nanny?
  • Which educational and developmental areas are you good at or prefer as a nanny?
  • How would you plan and organize your work week or day as a nanny?
  • Would you be willing to go the extra mile and provide the best care to children in challenging environments?
  • What would you do in an emergency involving children under your care? Do you have any specific lifesaving skills?
  • How would you handle a child who does not obey your instructions?
  • Do you have any questions about this position?

Questions to Ask A Potential Nanny About Lifestyle

  • Do you have any hobbies? What do you do for fun or in your free time?
  • How much time are you willing to dedicate to the baby(s) under your care in a day?
  • Do you have any religious, dietary, or lifestyle preferences/restrictions?
  • Are you willing to alter your lifestyle and schedule to match your employer’s?

Open-Ended Questions to Ask A Potential Nanny

  • What are your career goals or aspirations?
  • Where do you see yourself in ten years?

Questions to Ask Yourself After A Nanny Interview

  • Does the nanny have the requisite qualifications?
  • Does the nanny meet the criteria in all areas of interest?
  • Does the nanny match the needed of our client?
  • Is the nanny a trustworthy and reliable person based on our assessment?

Questions Not to Ask During A Nanny Interview

  • How old are you? -You cannot ask this question because it is illegal to discriminate candidates based on their age.
  • Do you have any disabilities? – You cannot ask this question because it is illegal to discriminate candidates based on their disabilities or lack thereof.
  • Are you married or do you plan to get married?
  • Questions to do with their sexual orientation/gender

There is no doubt that recruiting the right people is an important activity for any nanny agency. Get the wrong people, and you may find it hard to attract clients or stay in business. You can make your work easier by letting us handle your client communications and automate your processes today.

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