Interviewing a Potential Babysitter
Once you have found babysitters that meet your needs on www.babysitters4u.co.nz then you will need to arrange an interview to determine their suitability. This is generally best conducted at your house so they can meet your children and you can show them the environment.
An interview should not only focus on the person's skills and experience but also their personality and temperament, to make sure they will get along with your children.
Remember if you are feeling a little unsure or nervous about interviewing someone, they will be equally as nervous. It is helpful to chat about things in general to break the ice, rather than launching into a barrage of questions which will only intimidate the babysitter.
A conversation is what is needed rather than just a question and answer session. To that end ask open-ended questions such as 'Why do you enjoy babysitting?' The answer to which requires explanation, rather than 'Do you like babysitting?' which only requires a simple yes or no as an answer and reveals little about the person.
The questions you ask will vary depending on the type and age of caregiver you are interviewing. We have split the questions into two groups, one for younger caregivers and one for adult or professional caregivers. You can mix the questions depending on the individual. You don't need to ask all the questions, pick ones which you feel are important to you.
Have a notepad and pen with you so you can take notes, this is especially useful if you are interviewing more than one babysitter, once they have gone it can be difficult to remember what each individual said.
Interviewing Younger Babysitters
You will need to start with the basics. These are obviously details you want to write down. Name, age, address, home phone number, mobile phone number, references and police check if they have them.
Here are some questions you then might like to ask. Remember to make these questions part of a conversation if you can, it will help everyone relax.
- Do you have any brothers or sisters who you have looked after? How old are they?
- Have you taken care of other children and if so, when, where and how old were they?
- Have you any babysitting, first aid or CPR training?
- What are you studying at school/university/polytechnic?
- What do you enjoy doing in your spare time such as hobbies and sports?
- Why do you enjoy looking after children?
- What are some of the important things to remember when looking after children?
- What would you do in an emergency, such as the smoke alarm going off?
- When are you available and what do you expect to get paid?
- And finally: Is there anything you want to ask me?
Interviewing Adult or Professional Caregivers
Interviews with people of this category will usually be more detailed, as they have more experience of life as well as childcaring and will thus have more information to share with you.
The same rules apply as for interviewing younger babysitters, ask open ended questions and try to keep it relaxed. Remember to keep your pen and paper handy!
- Once again, start with the basics of name, age, address, phone numbers etc.
- Ask for and check references, police check, qualifications etc.
- Here are some questions you might like to ask.
- Can you describe your childcare experience, including ages of children and the time spent looking after them?
- Are you still caring for other children?
- Do you have children of your own? If so how old are they?
- Do you have any special training or certification?
- What do you find most and least rewarding about childcare?
- What ages of children are you most comfortable with?
- What is your approach to discipline?
- Are you confident in your ability to handle an emergency?
- What is the most difficult situation you have encountered whilst babysitting? How did you resolve the situation?
- What are your career and personal goals?
- What hobbies or sports do you enjoy?
- When are you available and how much do you expect to get paid?
- Any questions?
In conclusion, once you have finished the interview, it would be a good idea to introduce the babysitter to your children. Allow them some time together whilst you are present, so you can observe how they interact.
Thank the babysitter for attending the interview and explain to them how and when you will inform them of the outcome.