A guide to interviewing a potential nanny

Once you have selected the candidates you wish to interview, plan a day when (if possible) the children are at home so that they can meet the nanny and vice versa – the way in which they talk to and approach the children will give you an insight into how well they are going to interact with your children.

The following provides a guide as to how you may wish to approach the interview, based on our experience.

At the start of the interview it is important to introduce the children if they are there and outline what is expected from the nanny, including talking about their weekly routines and other interests (ballet, football etc.).

Ask questions which are relevant both to the nanny’s experience and to your own expectations. Some example questions are below:

  • Why did you want to be a nanny & what do you enjoy about your chosen career?
  • Tell me about your past experiences with children and the activities that you enjoy doing with children at home and outside of the home.
  • What would you offer on a weekly menu for the children? (Take into account here that the nanny will not have the benefit of your child’s likes and dislikes at this stage)
  • Talk about your parenting style and ask for the nanny’s comments on this.
  • Give the nanny an opportunity to ask questions at the end of the interview – this will help them in their decision if the post is offered to them and can also give you a useful insight into their priorities.
  • Give the nanny a tour of your home and the opportunity to spend some time with the children which you can observe.
  • After meeting the candidate ask yourself the following questions:
  • Would you feel happy having this person in your home and possibly living with you? Remember that if the nanny is going to be residential you can’t expect that they will return home every weekend.
  • Could you comfortably discuss any problems with the nanny?
  • Did you feel that the nanny had enough relevant experience?
  • Did the nanny seem well organised and enthusiastic?
  • Did the nanny seem empathetic to your parenting style?
  • Did the children get on well with the nanny?