If you’re a self-employed nanny, you have a lot of flexibility over the jobs you take. Many of these independent contractors use their flexibility to their advantage and work with multiple families at a time.
- Why would a nanny juggle multiple families?
- How do they do it?
- Is balancing multiple families something that YOU should do?
We’ll take a look at the first two questions, and you can use that to answer the last one yourself .
You may love nannying. It may be the career of your dreams. But, the fact is that there is a reason, beyond your love of children, for working as a nanny.
How do you, as a nanny, earn more money? In my article Nannying Rates I talk about not getting greedy. Rather than just upping your rates for no reason, it’s better to increase the value you offer the world. The article says:
Don’t get greedy, do more. When you first start in any career, the pay isn’t that great. You may need to look into working with more than one family or maybe doing a nanny share. Start by looking for families that only need a few days each week. You may be able to work out a schedule that has you working full-time between different families. The other thing you could start doing is nanny sharing.
I definitely recommend not working with different families that have overlapping schedules when you are just starting out. Once you’ve got some nanny experience, though, you can juggle multiple families at a time. It will help you earn a livable wage and have some variety in your week. Another reason it’s good to work with multiple different families at the same time is that you’ll never be left without a job. If one job doesn’t work out for one reason or another, you still have your other(s).
Balancing multiple families at one time can be a bit complicated. You have to make sure that their schedules don’t overlap or have nanny share clauses covered in your Nanny Contract. Keeping everything organized can be a challenge, but not impossible. Here are the ways I keep multi-family operation going.
I’m so excited to announce our nanny binder is on it’s way! We have been working on it for a while now and it’s getting close to being finished! If you want to be alerted when it’s released, sign up to our Newsletter below to get updates on it’s progress!
This nanny binder will include access to the Nanny Contract, medical consent form, interview questionnaire, module daily log, and tax tracker. Everything will be in one place and easily adjustable with our disc-binding setup! I’ve been using our initial prototype (and making adjustments) for about the past few months and I’m loving it!
Being the visual person that I am, I like to see multiple pages laid out in front of me at a time. I can do that with this binder style. I can take pages out of the notebook and stick them right back in and still have it look like professional journal. I also love the fact that I can rearrange things in it! I use all of my printables and have my different families bookmarked for easy transitions throughout the week.
I have and will continue to mention the importance of tracking your finances and miles for work. I have my tax tracker right in front for easy logging throughout the month. Then, I can use those pages for a quick and easy reference for filing my taxes. You don’t have to be one of those people that dreads tax season. The few minutes I take everyday to fill out my log makes my taxes take only about 1 hour to file! I’m telling you guys, this nanny binder is a life saver.
Ok, so back to explaining how the nanny binder can help you juggle multiple families. All of your different families’ information can be separated out by last name or kids’ name. This way, you’ll have quick references for their daily routines and schedules. You can also have their kids’ food and activity preferences listed here.
Or, you can organize your binder like mine! My tax tracker goes right in the front with my master calendar. Then, I have a tab for contracts and medical consent forms at the back of my journal. This is just in case I need quick access to any of their personal or medical information. I put that tab in the back, so it doesn’t interfere with finding and getting to the tabs I reference more often, which is the kids’ individual tabs.
Normally when I first start with a new family, I just use their family name to organize everything about all of the kids there. After a few months though, I’m able to build a “profile” for each kid individually. This is nice because I’m able to take notes about each kids’ successes and struggles. I can also add specific notes about their individual preferences and habits.
Google calendar each kid in a different color
I highly recommend using the printable calendar in your nanny binder to keep track of your different nanny families. I use a different color for each family and their activities. For example, at one point I was working with three different families. I used pink highlighter for one family and highlighted any events on my calendar that were associated with them pink. My other two families were blue and yellow.
I also highly recommend making a shared google calendar with each family. Label their calendar as “Child Care for (Family Name)” and share it with them. That way, both you and the parents have access to the schedule you agreed on. It also comes in handy when either of you want to change the schedule. You can just send an invitation to the schedule change.
Then, on your end, you can select all of your shared google calendars with the individual families. This will give you an overall view of all of your nanny jobs. That way if any of their schedules start to overlap, you can make necessary adjustments or accommodations.
It’s super important to take good notes and have an efficient way of organizing them. As I mentioned earlier, I really like organizing my notes in my nanny binder. That way all of my notes are with me all the time. I keep my invoice and payment apps on my phone and make sure to have the important documents (contract and medical consent form) uploaded to my google drive. Making sure these notes are available in an instant can prevent me from making unfortunate mistakes.
Before I had my nanny binder, I made plenty of mistakes. Some were minor, like forgetting that a kid didn’t like tomatoes, while others were far worse. One time, I almost gave one of my little ones a food they were allergic too. Thankfully, they were at the age that they knew and recognized the food and the fact that couldn’t have it. If it hadn’t been for them or I’d had my documents and notes organized in a nanny binder like the one I have now, that could’ve ended our day at the local Emergency room.
When you’re taking care of kids, it’s WAY better to be safe rather than sorry! So, make sure to take good notes and keep them organized. Keep up with your calendar and carry your nanny binder with you everywhere. To get one like mine, sign-up for our newsletter for updates on it’s progress and look forward to it’s release soon!