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Two very important roles in a busy family household are that of the nanny and the housekeeper. There are many reasons why one or both may be needed and it’s vital to know the responsibilities of both jobs as they aren’t the same.
Consider what you are looking for
When deciding who you are looking to employ, think about the tasks they will be undertaking – or not, such as:
– All aspects of childcare
– Cleaning the whole home or the children’s bedrooms only
– Laundry for the family or only the children
– Cooking meals for the children – or all the family
– Managing household administration
Whilst there will be some crossover between some of the tasks, there are some areas which are purely associated with being a nanny and some with a housekeeper and knowing the scope of each role will help you decide who you really need.
The role of a nanny
With more and more mums now working full time, young children need a nanny to care for them for part or all of the day.
A nanny is an invaluable member of the household and can either be in a live-in or live-out position. Usually with formal qualifications, a nanny will have full responsibility for the care of the children and will be given full responsibility to carry out a number of tasks whilst the parents are at work. These include preparing meals for the children, bathing and dressing them, doing the school run, nursing them if they don’t feel too well and perhaps helping with school work.
Cleaning duties would normally be limited to the cooking utensils and crockery used by the children and the tidying of their bedrooms. A nanny would not be expected to clean all of the house and they wouldn’t normally be expected to make meals for the rest of the family.
Nannies are dedicated, loyal, experienced and love working with children. They are honest and trustworthy and will have impeccable references.
Being a housekeeper
A housekeeper does more than a cleaner but is not tasked with the responsibility of caring for children. As with a nanny they will either live in or out depending on the circumstances of the family.
A housekeeper is a central part of the home. They manage many areas such as cleaning, laundry, cooking, shopping and can often be asked to undertake administrative responsibilities such as financial record-keeping.
Cleaning will be a pivotal responsibility for any housekeeper but they will also have the task of ensuring that there is food available for meals, telephone messages are passed on and that errands are carried out. In a large household, the housekeeper may have cleaning staff they manage who will carry out the deeper cleaning jobs or have certain areas of the home they clean each day.
A housekeeper will certainly have interaction with any children in the household but they won’t be expected to care for them; this is the job of the nanny.
Housekeepers will either have professional qualifications or a raft of experience. Some will have specialist skills such as being a professional cook.
Choose who is right for you
Choosing the right person to be responsible for the care of your children or having the responsibility for the running of your home is one which takes careful consideration.
With the knowledge of the differences in the nanny and housekeeper roles, talk to the professionals about your needs and they can set the ball rolling to find you someone who is experienced, hard-working and qualified. SupaCare has been placing nannies and housekeepers with families for 20 years and can answer all the questions you may have and then find you the right homecare to step in to support you in your busy life.