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How to Become a Nanny
By: Sharmain Zain
Reading time: 3 min

Being a nanny is more than just babysitting. It involves helping households run smoothly and providing the parents flexibility and support. Hiring a nanny is often an alternative to traditional childcare, so nannies are expected to be a positive role model and contribute to the development of the children being looked after.

Nannies can even become a part of the family, sometimes living with the household. This can be an incredibly rewarding experience for many, becoming connected with the kids and being present for some of their big milestones.

Is becoming a nanny the right career move for you? What should you expect from this kind of work? Find out below.

Job basics

The estimated starting salary for a nanny is £15,000, while experienced nannies can expect to receive £30,000.

In most cases, nannies will work 40 to 60 hours per week depending on the requirements of the family. Part time work is also possible.

What does being a nanny involve?

Day to day responsibilities of nannies depend on the type and size of the family you’re working for. Some parents may leave lists for you, or discuss in advance what is required of you.

Nannies commonly take on extra tasks in addition to looking after the kids. Typical duties include helping with housework and meal preparation, school drop off and pick up, assisting with homework, and ensuring the kids are always entertained and behaving. Overall, the role of the nanny is to make everyone’s lives easier.

What qualities should I have?

As you’d expect, this type of work requires you to be great with children and enjoy spending time with them. If you’re not a natural with kids or aren’t willing to work on developing a good rapport with them, this isn’t the job for you.

Responsibility is an incredibly important trait. You’re going to be responsible for babies and small children that aren’t yours, and you need to take this role seriously.

Another one of the most valuable qualities of a successful nanny is patience, patience, patience. If you struggle to show composure and can’t keep your cool under pressure, you’re going to become frustrated and burn out very quickly.

How do I become qualified?

Although a degree is not necessary, studying childcare or education is a good idea. Having a qualification in this area will show that you are a serious candidate, and also help you land higher paying jobs.

In addition, work on developing your interpersonal skills. Not only will you better connect with the children you’re looking after, but you’ll also be better equipped to communicate effectively with parents.

Families hiring you will typically expect you to have excellent references, so gain as much experience as possible, even if it’s just babysitting for a family friend.

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