In the Loop

This is a question for nannies/families who have worked/lived in largely staffed household. I've recently went on a few job interviews where I would need to keep a lot of nannies/household staff in the loop about the family's schedule. I haven't worked in this position before and was wondering how others keep it all together. I know you can use Google calender and iCal to share schedules, but I haven't worked with either in this way. Have any of you used either of those? Or have another recommendation? Thank you!


DC nanny said...

In my job we used the Outlook calendar system. The big problem with that (or any other calendar system) is that everyone involved needs to be using the same type of product. That's not an issue when everyone works in an office setting with standard equipment, but if everyone in the house uses their own phone/computer/email, it gets more complicated.

I had trouble getting my Outlook calendar to sync with my iPhone. I know it was possible to do because my boss had hers synced, but she also had an IT team set it up, and I had to try to figure mine out alone.

It can definitely be a pain in the butt, but if it works properly it's helpful for everyone to have access to the schedule. The Outlook calendar itself actually worked very nicely and is easy to figure out. We have EVERYTHING on the schedule, and it's extremely necessary. With 6 staff and 3 over-scheduled children to keep track of, it would be very challenging to manage without the system.

nycmom said...

I am not as technologically advanced as some of the younger nannies, I imagine. For about a year I was juggling various pt nannies schedules and kids' activities. I simply made a table in Word, labeled each day of the week, and made rows/columns for each person's hours and the kids' activities. I gave a copy to everyone and put one on the fridge. Worked fine.

Village said...

'Various part time nannies' used to be called baby sitters.

LAnanny said...

Village, I've learned that babysitters and nannies are completely different things. Babysitters hangout with your kids, Nannies take on a parenting role, in a nut shell....

and thanks for the advice so far! The family currently uses iCal, but I feel like I've heard google calender is better for this kind of use... not sure...

nycmom said...


Yes, I understand people have strong feelings on this topic. In this case, these women were assuming the role of a nanny on a part-time basis due to difficult circumstances. I also have date night sitters who do nothing but babysit. These women were vastly more qualified and skilled caregivers. Nonetheless, the words are used in just different ways regionally and I am not one to get defensive or accusatory about it since I recognize the usage has evolved significantly over the past 20 years and greatly depends on your location.

But I also don't take offense if patients call me "Nurse" instead of doctor either. I have learned to pick my battles more carefully as I get older.

Fiona said...

I am a fan of google for this situation.

As for nanny vs babysitter.

The term babysitter conjures visiosn of a bratty teen, in short shorts, snapping bubblegum, and yammering away on her phone or texting. Someone with little to no experience caring for kids, and someone willing to go along with whatever her boss dreams up. She doesn't care she's just there for the cash. It;s also someone that is part time without a regular commitment to the family.
Nanny carries with a different image one of experience, maturity, respect and commitment.
That is why you see so many people on the various care sites and Craig's List calling themselves nanny. It drums up more attention.

Nycmom, you might feel differently if people started calling you maid, after all you all have a hospital bed in common.
Even more so if you corrected this person many times and they refused to call you by your proper title and just consider it a regional difference.

In my experience people that want to be called babysitters after the age of 19 are immature and tend not to view their role as a nanny seriously. They just like to sound cute and ooh and aah over babies.

Also in my experience parents who want to call the babysitter nanny want to sound important.

Parents that insist on calling their nanny babysitter, typically have trouble admitting that that person plays a significant role in raising their children.

LetsBeAccurate said...

Village, OP didn't say part time nannies. She said several nannies.

Rosario said...

Fiona.... the term "babysitter" can be used for anyone who does not have a long term position in the household. This can be anyone from the 16 year old next door, to your good friend who is going to watch your child for a day while you have something to tend to. A nanny is someone who is on a set schedule, usually everyday with your child. I don't see why it is such a stigma associated with "babysitter". I am one who knows what your place is. When I work for a family for 4 months and i see them 5 days a week from 8 am- 5 pm, i am a nanny. But when I am with my friend's child for a few hours, I am (and i accept the title) a babysitter. It has nothing to do with age or experience.