Finding your perfect au pair

August and September are the busiest months of the year on, as parents try to find a carer for their child.

Whether you choose to hire an au pair, a childminder, or a nanny you will be competing with  hundreds of other host families on the site to find the perfect carer for your child.

Children returning to school

We’ve prepared a short list of tips to help:

  • Au pair wages  – since the recent ruling in the WRC au pairs are recognised as employees, and therefore entitled to all the legal protections employees enjoy, including wages. An experienced au pair is now entitled to a wage of €9.15 per hour, if your au pair is live in you are entitled to deduct €54.13 per week to cover food and board – this sum is under review by the Low Pay Comission and the sum will hopefully be increased to a more realistic amount in the future. Not paying your au pair the minimum wage could mean they would have grounds to take you to court, and also brings the industry into disrepute.  Please see this blog posting to learn more about au pair’s wages.
  • Posting your job – Job title and description: To save both you and jobseekers wasted time, add as much detail to your advert as possible – your advert title should include the job title, and the job location (ie. Live in Nanny wanted in Naas”). Your job description needs detail – make sure you include the hours, the number and ages of your children, pets if any, and the au pair’s responsibilities – the more detail the better.
  • Finding candidates – your location will affect the number of applicants your advert gets. Adverts for jobs in Dublin, or other cities, get far more applicants than those in rural locations. If you’re living in the countryside, or in a smaller town you will have will need to be more proactive to get applicants – as well as posting your job advert you should also use our search funtionality to find jobseekers, and use the Share functionality on the au pair’s mini-cv to send jobseekers a link to your job, inviting them to apply. Also use the Shortlist Jobseeker and Private Notes functionality to keep track of jobseekers.
  • Job contract – Have a clear contract, outlining the au pair’s duties, responsibilities, and your expectaions, we have a separate blog posting covering au pair contracts here and we have a sample contract here.
  • Interviewing – As a lot of job seekers on our site are already located in Ireland interviewing is easier than it was in the past. Speak to candidates you are interested in and arrange to meet them at a convenient time and location, if the au pair has to travel a distance to meet you, consider covering some of their expenses to encourage them to make the trip. If your candidate is located abroad use Skype or FaceTime to interview them online.
  • References – we can’t emphasise how important it is you check the candidate’s references. Horror stories are, fortunately, very rare, but on the few occasions host families reported seriously negative experiences with their au pairs, it always transpired they had not check the jobseekers’ references. It is your responsibility to do this – we’re not an au pair agency, we’re a job site, so we do not vet au pairs.
  • Sending money to your au pair – Never ever, ever send money to an au pair. There are absolutely no exceptions to this rule. If an au pair requests money for air fare, for a visa, for innoculations, or for anything else, there is a very strong chance they are scammers. If they do request money, please contact us immediately at [email protected] . If you do wish to cover your au pair’s travel expenses, or any other expense, only do so after they have arrived.

Following the guidelines above should make the process of finding your perfect au pair a little easier, and result in more applicants to choose from, it will also make the experience of hosting your perfect au pair, when find her all the more enjoyable.

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