How do you select the right babysitter for your family?"A lot of parents find it hard to meet a babysitter for the first time."

More and more families are using the help of a babysitter. We live in a time where it becomes really difficult to multitask and set the right priorities. Especially when other alternatives are not possible at the moment —such as friends and family taking care of the kid(s)— having a flexible babysitter around will be much needed. But when do you know that you have selected a good babysitter? Do you have a conversation with the potential babysitter to get to know eachother? Or is a telephone call enough? And what qualities should you pay attention to?

Keep on reading and see what father Gijs and three of our experienced Babysitting Angels have to say about this subject. You will also find five useful tips when it comes to finding the right babysitter.

Maar wanneer weet je dat je een goede oppas in huis hebt gehaald? Ga je een gesprek met de potentiële oppas aan of is een telefoontje ook genoeg? Op welke kwaliteiten moet je letten en selecteren?

Lees snel verder wat vader Gijs en drie van onze ervaren Oppas Angels zeggen over dit onderwerp en wat zij ouders adviseren bij het vinden van een oppas die bij hen past.

The search for a babysitter was also a challenge for father Gijs

The new generation of parents

In the past, the roles in house were divided differently. Mothers often stayed at home to take care of the children while the fathers went to work to earn money. Today, this division of roles is completely different. Many families now consist of both hard-working fathers and mothers. With both a career and other social obligations, having a helping hand around is useful.

Father Gijs and his wife have a son of 15 months old. With both a busy job, having more flexibility is indispensable. And with few relatives living nearby the two fresh parents quickly came to the conclusion to have the help of a babysitter. For many parents, especially those who have just received their first child, having a babysitter in house can be quite exciting. Gijs and his wife on the other side had no problems at all:

"When our little one was only 3 months old we were already making use of a babysitter in house. We really like it. We do not have any problems with receiving various babysitters, especially because we are confident that they have been screened and have the necessary diplomas."

Gijs van Vuuren

At home, Gijs and his wife mainly make use of a last minute babysitter during the week. Always handy if you have all kinds of spontaneous nights out or late business appointments. Through acquaintances Gijs heard of Charly Cares. Soon he became one of the many parents who trust in the concept of Charly Cares: finding a reliable babysitter.

5 tips for finding a reliable babysitter

1. Have faith in your babysitter

It is very important to start your search to find the right babysitter with full confidence. After all, you are going to hand over the care of your most precious gift. This can be very exciting of course, but do not let these healthy tensions influence your selection process.

The process can be very difficult if you are constantly in doubt. For example, you can dwell too long on the qualities / characteristics of a babysitter. Nobody is perfect, but with the right instructions, a babysitter can be perfect for your family. In this case it is important to know what your family specifically needs. This way you can efficiently target the right babysitter.

Therefore it is really important to fully commit to finding a babysitter. If you find it too exciting and there are other available alternatives where you feel more comfortable with, we recommend you to try multiple alternatives and see what suits you best.

Father Gijs has confidence in Charly Cares, because the Babysitting Angels are personally screened and have the necessary experience in the field of babysitting and care (for children). In addition, he advises parents to book different babysitters to see what suits your family best.

Gijs says:

"Good screening, take a good look at those who you invite to your house and try to book different babysitters. With the help of the app you can see all the qualities of each babysitter."

2. It is all about the first impression

If you open the Babysitting App and get to see all the available babysitters, selecting the right babysitter becomes a lot more difficult. Everything revolves around the first impression. Does the babysitter look neat? What do other parents have to say about the babysitter?

According to our Babysitting Angel: one picture is worth a 1000 words. No matter how you look at it, people are visually minded. It is very logical that parents select a babysitter based on their profile photo. Some parents on the other hand find it difficult to select a babysitter based on their profile photo. Bleike advise these parents to select a babysitter with the help of the children. If they are old enough to do this of course. It is really fun and a good start to build a connection between the potential babysitter and the kids. In the end, the children will be in contact with the babysitter most of the time.

"One time the children chose me as their babysitter. Based on my profile photo. Also a lot of other families pick me as their babysitter with the help of their children."

Bleike Bruisten (Babysitter at Charly Cares)

But does a picture says everything?

Do you know those days when you have a "bad hairday"? The last thing you want to do, is to make a profile picture at Charly Cares. You want to look at your best so parents get the right impression of you as a person. For these kind of situations all babysitters at Charly Cares can add a personal description. This way parents get to know the babysitter a little better.

"Parents also read my description just to know if the description matches with the feeling they get from my profile photo."

Bleike Bruisten (Babysitter at Charly Cares)

Also Babysitting Angel Bregje understands the importance of a good personal description. Especially in the selection process of finding the right babysitter. Bregje says:

"If I were a parent, I would look at the personal descriptions about the babysittersmyself and I would also look at the photo (of the babysitter), otherwise you do not know at all who is coming to your home."

Bregje Adriaanse (Babysitter at Charly Cares)

Gijs on the other hand does not attach much value to a profile photo. Of course he and his wife do want to know who they will invite to their house, but they mainly take a look at the qualities of the babysitter.

3. Commitment & the first meet up

After the superficial selection round, it is important to examine if a babysitter shows the right amount of effort. Is the babysitter enthousiastic? Does the babysitter take care of a child serious enough? Does the babysitter takes initiative when it comes to a booking?

For Gijs, this is also one of the most important issues when it comes to select the right babysitter. To get the right answers, you can either choose to send a message to the babysitter, call or schedule an appointment to get to know each other face-to-face. But what is the best way to communicate and what exactly do you have to pay attention to?

According to Babysitter Angel Rachell it is important to send a message to the parent as soon as the booking is complete. This is very useful for both the parent and the Angel. It shows the parent that the babysitter takes the initiative and is enthusiastic. For the Angel it is a useful moment to get to know the family better.

"Well actually, if I have accepted a booking, then I always send the parent a message saying: Hey how nice that I am passing by to babysit. Also because I would not find it okay if I go to someones house without saying a word to each other."

Rachell van Zutphen (Babysitter at Charly Cares)

Rachell, Bregje and Bleike notice that each family is different when it comes to getting acquainted. For example, some parents like to have a separate meeting with the babysitter to get to know each other better. And other families like to wait until the actual date and give a brief instructions to the babysitter.

"Some parents find it very important that they see you in advance. So that you can come over to get to meet the children. This way they can see if you can get along with the children. Other parents are really chill. When you come over they will welcome you and tell you where the fridge is."

Rachell van Zutphen (Babysitter at Charly Cares)

In the field of getting acquainted, it is important to look at what you consider important as a parent. If you think you need half an hour or longer to get to know a babysitter, then you should definitely do that. It is certainly not weird to pay extra attention to this. Other parents who have less time, and more experience with getting a babysitter in the house, do not always need or have time for this. And this is not weird either.

Father Gijs has his time management well organized. His family has had different babysitters and created his own pool of favorite babysitters and an efficient way to instruct all the babysitters.

"We always leave an instructions sheet for the Babysitting Angels containing all the information about the house and the house rules. And we always take 10 minutes to explain everything to the babysitter."

Gijs van Vuuren

You prevent a lot of ambiguities by —just like Gijs did— by creating an instructions sheet with all the house rules. A babysitter can never remember all the information at once. And in case you, as a parent, are not available, then it is very handy for a babysitter to have all the information at hand.

4. Don't forget the basics

The right babysitter can be recognized by a number of basic characteristics such as: Is the babysitter on time? Does the babysitter look neat? Does the babysitter show interest in the child or children? It is important to pay attention to these basics, because it says a lot about someone's character.

In addition, you also know that you have found a good babysitter when you come home and see happy children waiting for you.

Do you find it difficult to see and judge all these characteristics? Our advice to you is to write down the most important characteristics. This way you can calmly check your list of important characteristics when you will meet the babysitter.

5. Keep the babysitter in mind

Not only the children and parents want to feel comfortable with a babysitter. The babysitter wants to have a nice (working)environment too. A satisfied babysitter can lead to a better bond which lead to a better collaboration.

Gijs says:

"We always make sure that the babysitter feels at ease. We always get a meal for the babysitter and we make sure that the house is cleaned up."

Gijs van Vuuren

Have these 5 tips helped you or do you have some nice tips yourself?

Let us know!

Meet the parents: Hilke Lieshout

A few blog posts earlier we interviewed parent Hilke about how she ended up at Charly Cares. Hilke tells us what she finds the three biggests advantages of Charly Cares. Curious about her story?

Read the experience of parent Hilke about Charly Cares