After living in a college town for approximately four years, I recently began to see the childcare profession as extremely competitive. Parents need childcare, and there are providers everywhere you look-the daycare center, the stay-at-home-mom, and the nanny. Childcare options are everywhere. Out of the three types of caregivers, the most competitive I found was the nanny. Some parents prefer the comfort of a nanny inside their home, whereas others prefer their child to attend a daycare center, as they may not be able to afford the luxury of a nanny. In either case, I never thought that finding a nanny job in a college town would be so difficult. My competition? Twenty something university students with little experience in childcare.
That being said, I have applied for jobs listing the following qualifications: "must have experience with our child's age group, enjoy interacting with children, and own transportation. Early childhood education students encouraged to apply". I meet all the "qualifications": I exceed the experience with children, as I have worked with all ages, I love working with children, I have a car, and I am a student majoring in early childhood ed. Aha! I don't attend the prestigious four year university by choice. I am beginning to wonder if parents even read resumes-one family who listed these qualifications sent me a reply telling me they had over a hundred applicants and one was chosen. They signed the reply with best. I was livid. How could they list basic qualifications and send such a snotty reply? Did they really count every reply to the position, or did they look at my resume, understand that I exceed their qualifications, resulting in a feeling of fear that I am well-qualified to babysit their child, even though I am not a university student or grad?
"You have great experience and a background and we really like you. Unfortunately, you do not attend the university and are experienced, and therefore, we feel that you aren't qualified enough to work for us, based on the name of your school".
I can hear them saying this as I send my resume to prospective families in town. Most of the time, I don't even get a reply. It's rude, frustrating and childish. I am beginning to wonder if parents even know what a qualified babysitter and nanny look like. I am giving some consideration into building a website for myself, highlighting my background, experience, and education. I plan on opening a nanny agency within the next year, and I feel the website would be a great way to introduce me to the community.
Last week, I decided to apply for a nanny job because I am frustrated with my current job. That being said, I applied for a job with a family who is willing to work around my school schedule. From the way the mother was talking, she made it seem as though I got the job, and even discussed insurance with me via email. I sent her a reply about the insurance and mentioned I was looking forward to coming over Saturday to hang out with the kids, and haven't heard a response from her about that or a start date. She loved my work agreement, and wants a copy of it, however, I have reservations about sending something like that to her without a formal offer. I don't consider myself with a job offer until I hear back from her about a start date.
In the meantime, I guess I will sit patiently and wait until I find a family that is everything I am looking for....