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Checklist: Interviewing a Caregiver

Your guide to interviewing potential caregivers for baby. No holding back!

Finding the right caregiver can make leaving baby under someone else’s charge much less stressful. Start by asking friends for recommendations. Use our questions to conduct thorough interviews with all your candidates. Let each spend some time with baby, and pay attention to how they interact.

Remember, this isn’t the time to be shy. The more you know about the person you hire, the better you’ll feel about the important role she’ll play in your (and baby’s) life... so ask away!


The Basics

Name:

Age:

Address:

Phone number:

Email:

Two references: (always check these!)

Citizenship status:

What hours are you available? Can you ever stay overnight?

Do you drive? What’s your record like? Do you have a car? Is it reliable?

Are you open to doing chores, cooking, or laundry?

What do you charge? (Or, ask if the amount you’d like to pay is acceptable)

How do you feel about working overtime? What would you charge?

What other commitments do you have right now -- other job, school, family, activities?

How long to you plan to be a caregiver? Will anything affect your availability in the near future- graduation, a move, marriage? Are you working towards any personal or career goals?

Why do you want this job? Why should I hire you?

Experience

Do you have children? How old are they?

Tell me about your childcare experience. Have you taken care of infants? How many children have you taken care of at once?

Are you caring for other children at this time? What kind of commitment do you have to them?

What’s the longest you’ve been with a family? When and why did your last job end?

Tell me about the most difficult child you ever cared for. How did you handle it?

Health and safety

Are you certified in infant CPR and first aid? Do you have any other special training?

Do you know how to change a diaper and deal with diaper rash?

How would you soothe a crying baby?

Are you comfortable giving medications?

Have you bathed an infant?

Do you know how to feed an infant, and what to do in case of choking?

Under what circumstances would you call… Me? The doctor? 911?

What would you do… In case of fire? If you suspected a criminal was in or outside the house?

Have you ever dealt with an emergency while babysitting?

Are you familiar and comfortable with our pets? Any allergies?

Can you swim? Are you familiar with basic water safety? (Especially important if you have a pool)

What immunizations do you have? Are they all current?

Explain any issues or concerns specific to your baby, and ask the candidate about their level of comfort and experience.

Explain any practices or rules particular to your family, and make sure the candidate is capable of abiding by them.

-- Paula Kashtan

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