How to Background Check Your Babysitter

Background checking your babysitter or nannies is one of the most important things you can do when hiring a babysitter or nanny in the first place. Once you commit to that decision to hire someone to help you with the little lives of those you hold most dear to you, it is essential that you thoroughly investigate any potential candidates.

A background check of your potential babysitter will ensure you avoid possible risks parents could face in this hiring process. From hiring someone who has potentially lied about their experience, to hiring someone whose discipline methodologies don’t tie in with your family beliefs, the process of finding the right person for the job is fraught with challenges - additional pressure you don’t need in your already too busy schedule.

Before Running the Background Check

While you feel you may be ready for the interview process, make sure you commit to a hiring strategy before starting to interview. This strategy should include how you will background check your babysitter, and it needs to be a strategy you stick with.

While interviewing, you may feel a connection to a potential candidate and they may seem perfect in that interview process. However, facts don’t lie and the information you discover in that background check could save you from making a critical mistake.

There is nothing wrong with asking your applicants to consent to a reference and background check, but you need to ensure you have their permission to perform this check legally.

You can limit your background search to just some essential information, but you need to make sure you know and can respect the rights of the candidate you are interviewing. Certain questions infringe on their rights and are not questions you can legally ask. These include questions about:

  • Religion
  • Age
  • Pregnancy
  • Disability
  • Ethnicity
  • Marital status

Background Check your Babysitter: Check the Babysitter's Identity

Make sure to confirm any applicants identity from the get-go when you are looking to background check your babysitter. A good way to start is to ask them to confirm their full names and social security number. You can even go as far as to ask for permission to take a photo of the front and back of their driver's license. If they are not keen for you to do this, make sure you are able to view this, and then record any pertinent information for your records.

In addition, you can check passports and work permits, especially if they are not local. An I-9 form is another way to check work eligibility in the Sates, and you can even cross-reference information they have given you against the US Citizenship and Immigration Services website.

Word of mouth is so important in this industry, and references from previous positions are a great way to get insight into the way a potential applicant works with children. Don’t be afraid to ask for reference - or to check them. When you call, make sure to pay attention to small details, like the way they respond when you ask questions. What is their tone? Did they hesitate before answering you? You can pick up valuable information from the unspoken cues in these conversations. Important questions to ask references include:

  • Duration of their employment
  • Why they are no longer employed
  • Would they hire them again
  • Were they punctual and reliable
  • Did they support the rules in the home
  • How did they handle emergency situations

Another valuable search path is social media and anything you see that your applicants have posted publicly to their social media accounts could be valuable.

Background Check your Babysitter: Check Public Records

You may even feel the need to run a criminal check on applicants when starting to background check your babysitter. Background checks are mandatory for any babysitting agencies, and professionals will be more than willing to allow you to complete due diligence. Further things to consider when completing your background check include:

Mental health issues are also coming to the fore in today’s times, and so it is not unheard of to request a psychiatric evaluation. Should this be something you want to pursue, make sure to inform applicants of this step at the start of the process.

Let the Experts Background Check your Babysitter

By now, you may be feeling like it would be easier to just give up working, stay at home or push pause on life rather than complete the process of hiring a suitable carer for your children. If this is the case, there is nothing stopping you from seeking professional assistance in this journey. Nanno, as an example, uses a screening process that is known to be one of the toughest in the industry. We do all the vetting and background checking for you. When you hire a babysitter using Nanno, you can rest assured that we’ve already checked and vetted them thoroughly -- and you can even see ratings and reviews from other parents.

Our background vetting process has been carefully structured and includes:

  • National Criminal Search
  • County-level Criminal Search
  • 50-State Sex Offender Search
  • Social Security Number Trace
  • Global Watchlist Search

Nanno applicants are also required to complete a skills test, to prove that they have the required knowledge of child and infant safety, and a behavioral profiling test, to make sure they have the right personality for child care. These measures provide a thorough and unbiased qualification of babysitters. Then, once the sitter is approved to be on the Nanno platform, they receive ratings and reviews from parents. If they get a negative review, they’re immediately suspended from the platform.

When making use of babysitting apps like Nanno, parents can easily search the database of applicants with the peace of mind of knowing these have been thoroughly screened and vetted.

The Most Important Decision you can Make

Choosing the right babysitter is one of the most important decisions you will make for your family and is something you need to do carefully and with due consideration. Background checks are a great way to make sure they are the right fit for your family and that they can competently complete the required tasks.

Nanno can assist you in this process and will ensure all candidates you consider are comprehensively screened and vetted before even crossing your doorway for that initial interview.

Contact us today to find out more.

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New York, NY
Stacy is a former nanny and currently director of user success at Nanno. She loves to find fun new solutions to complicated problems. Fun facts about Stacy: She is the oldest of 8 children.