How to Become a Nanny

Updated: Apr 17, 2019



With the rise of busy two-income households, the need for professional nannies to provide loving, reliable and quality child care is certainly in high demand. Professional nannies, unlike casual babysitters, spend many hours per week caring for the physical and emotional needs of children ranging in age from newborns up to teenagers.

Nanny salaries are also on the rise, ranging anywhere from $25,000 - $85,000 per year for full time and $15-30 per hour for part time. With the hiring demand coupled with these competitive rates, many school teachers and health care professionals have opted for a career alternative in providing private-duty child care as a professional nanny.

With the competitive nature of the industry, many are wondering how do I become a nanny and how do I land my first nanny job? We've worked with many families, nanny agencies and top nannies and have found the key to becoming a successful nanny.

1. Enroll in a Nanny and Pediatric CPR Training Course

Working as a nanny is no longer just watching kids, nannies are expected to be professionals and know what to do all day. Nannies should be able to handle emergencies, potty train, put children down for naps, provide safe nutritious meals, create and follow a schedule, provide age appropriate learning and play activities, care for multiple age groups including infants, communicate well and more. For caregivers who are serious about becoming a nanny and working with a great family, nanny training and certification is a must. Not only will it develop your child care skills but will likely increase your marketability and pay, and will indicate to families that you take your job seriously.

2. Gain Hands-On Child Care Experience.

Probably one of the the most important things you can do to become a nanny is to gain some child care experience. Many caregivers often ask, well how do I get nanny experience if most parents and agencies require that I already have experience? While this may seem unfair, it is understandable. Would you hire someone to care for your baby who has no experience over someone who has several years? The good news is that many have gained experience in a number of different ways.

  • First, see if anyone you know would be willing to let you babysit or help care for their children for free in exchange for a recommendation letter or reference for a job well done. Maybe someone in your neighborhood or a family friend. Tell them you are hoping to become a nanny and want to gain experience. Try to avoid using family members since this is frowned upon in the nanny industry and is often thought of as a bogus reference. Offer to babysit for them as often as possible to gain more

substantial experience.

  • Offer your services to families at a discounted rate for a period of time. This will allow them to try you out and gain confidence in your ability. Let them know you've received training and want to begin your career as a nanny. While this may not work for all families, some will be open to saving on child care expense.

  • Offer babysitting services on care.com or other online nanny sites before registering with a professional agency, who will want more verifiable experience.

  • Volunteer at a daycare, summer camp or afterschool program. These programs are often looking for an extra set of hands. Let them know your goal is to gain experience.

  • Set up a linkedin account and add 'child care' or 'professional nanny' to your profile and network. Families may contact you directly.

3. Create a Professional Nanny Resume.

Often this first impression a family may have of you, is your resume. Having a Professional Nanny Resume will show your training, your related experience and your goals. If you don't have tons of experience, be careful not to list dates on the resume. This way, you can speak with the families first to discuss your experience and goals and they may give you a chance. Be sure to be honest and list the activities and duties that you are willing to perform. Adding a clean and very friendly picture of you may help. For help with nanny resume writing and editing services, feel free to email us.

4. Join Nanny Associations, Local Nanny Networks & Nanny Agencies.

The International Nanny Association and other nanny networks provide helpful information for nannies and families on working as a nanny. Becoming a member will increase your awareness and professionalism. Once you've gained some experience on your own, apply to all your local agencies and they can recommend you to your area's top nanny jobs. Nanny agencies perform rigorous screening and background checks on all nanny applicants and will match you with families that are seeking your skills and background.

For more questions on becoming a nanny, please send an email to The Infant & Child Care Training Academy (ICT).

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