Frequently asked questions
Seattle Nanny Network (also known as Seattle Nanny) has been serving the greater Seattle area for over 25 years. We have successfully placed nannies in Seattle, west Seattle, Tacoma, Bellevue, Redmond, Kirkland, Bothell, Issaquah, Sammamish, Lynnwood, Auburn, Bremerton, Mercer Island, Shoreline, Edmonds, Mill Creek, Mountlake Terrace, Everett, Kent, Renton, Federal Way, Bellingham and Spokane to name a few. For placements outside of Washington state please visit www.nationalnanny.com
Our search time is about four to eight weeks from start to finish. This is an average, with some searches taking more or less time.
You hire our agency to expertly filter out the majority of applicants and present with only the best screened and ready to hire nannies.
Once we spend the time to get to know your family, our team will review the results of your Needs Analysis. We then immediately share your listing by text alert to our exclusive, available internal candidate pool.
Within 24 to 48 hours (on average) our team shares detailed composites of interested candidates. Many of our jobs are filled before they are listed publicly. Our clients typically make an offer to one of the first 3 candidates they meet from our agency. If a family has met more than this number of candidates and hasn’t at least tried to offer one of them their job, we original expectations. There is no limit to the number of candidates a family may meet with.
Current rates are holding between $30-40/hour.
Standard nanny benefits in the Seattle area include:
- Washington State Paid Sick and Safe Time (PSST), as required by law
- This translates to about 6 days paid time off for a 40 hour per week job. Seattle Nanny Network clients offer the scheduling equivalent two weeks paid days off per year, at minimum.
- Federal mileage reimbursement (for job related driving) is optional but many families provide this as part of the compensation packet.
- Note there may be an automobile insurance differential if your nanny is driving your children while on duty, resulting in the need to obtain increased coverage.
- Paid federal holidays (should they fall on a workday) are also standard.
There is a one-time non-refundable registration fee of $425 to gain access to our candidate pool (for long term, short term, and backup care placements).
Once a candidate accepts your offer, it will be time to choose the fee package that best suits your needs. You will be given the choice of a 2 month, 4 month, or 6 month free replacement window. Should you need a replacement outside of the replacement window, the fee will be discounted by 50% if within the first 12 months. After 12 months and forever more, the fee will be discounted by 10% for return clients.
Placement packages are a one-time fee of 15%-18% of the first year’s projected gross annualized compensation.
As decades long experts in an unregulated industry, we attract job applicants who seek representation. This results in our family clients gaining access to quality candidates that are difficult to source elsewhere.
On average, 135 payroll hours go into sourcing each nanny we place with a family client. The screening process is highly selective, with more than 95% of candidates being rejected during the application journey. The level of selectivity cannot be emphasized enough.
As your Human Resources partner, we offer guidance on nanny market, nanny wages, nanny benefits, nanny contracts, nanny mediation, and so much more.
Most if not all background information one can obtain on the internet is from a database that trolls public records. The results in these databases are not updated in real time. They may contain incomplete or missing information. Online data sweep companies are not bound to the strict regulations of the FCRA (Fair Credit Reporting Act) and therefore only report the most basic data. Privacy protection laws strictly prohibit access to actual court records, unless done so by a company by a third party investigation firm.
Finally, as the direct employer you are unable to base a hiring decision on negative information that is found in a report, as it is discriminatory. With the agency acting as an intermediary, you are provided with a critical layer of protection.
We reject 95% of applicants who apply, and cull hundreds of candidates for every open position. Our transparent screening process allows you the greatest amount of control you will ever have over the selection of who will be supervising your child(ren).
- 4000 hours verifiable paid childcare experience (in-home or facility)
- Three step verification process of references
- In-depth screening of social media footprint
- Background records review (including U.S. work authorization, criminal and DMV (driver motor vehicle), residential address history and SSN trace (social security number)
- Valid driver’s license, reliable vehicle, and current motor vehicle insurance
- CPR/First Aid certification or renewal
- Applicant essay and resume
- 1 hour interview and onboarding with our placement director
- OFAC screening
The primary responsibility of the professional nanny is to take care of the needs of the children, including but not limited to:
- Children’s meals
- Developmentally appropriate activities
- Safe transportation
- General maintenance of areas of the home where the children spend their time
- Dishwasher load and unload
- Child laundry
- Sweeping or vacuuming main traffic areas
House Manager Duties:
- Family laundry (bedding, linens, and towels)
- Management of family calendar
- General errands
- Grocery shopping (in-store or online)
- Pet care (daily walks, vet and groomer visits)
- Managing family bill pay service
- Deep cleaning and organization
- Coordinating auto and home maintenance
- Family meal prep and planning
- Event planning
Caution: be sensitive to “scope creep.” Avoid loading the nanny up with extra duties without updating written agreements and, when appropriate, providing additional compensation.
The schedule we most often see for a nanny is Monday through Friday with between 40 and 45 hours per week within the hours of 7AM-6PM. Any hours before 7AM or after 6PM, or on the weekend will command a premium rate and reduce the candidate pool.
Newborn Care Specialist certification is a training that can be privately obtained from various programs throughout the United States. Often nannies extensive experience working with infants take their career to the next level by obtaining NCS certification. These specialists offer care from birth to 12 weeks and typically charge $40 and above per hour. Our nannies with NCS training provide daytime and nighttime services. Our friends at The Perfect Push in Redmond, WA offer birth and post partum doula services to our clients.
Your nanny is not an independent contractor, they are an employee.
In Washington State, employers are required to withhold Social Security and Medicare taxes, as well as Paid Family & Medical Leave taxes from their employee’s paycheck each pay period. Federal income taxes should be withheld based on the employee’s selections on Form W-4. It is strongly recommended that you also pay federal income tax. Employers must pay employers portion of Social Security and Medicare, as well as federal and Washington unemployment insurance taxes (FUTA and SUTA) and small employment administration fund tax.
Part time workers have unique personal circumstances that allow them to consider less than full time wages. Part time schedules typically involve a similar commute to a full time job in terms of expense and time commitment, which is a consideration when a part time nanny is deciding if they can afford to take the job. Part time workers are also in demand, with more families seeking part time nannies than workers available to do the jobs. For this reason, part time wages tend to be at a premium rate.
Attempting to estimate the annual salary with a monthly numerical calculation based on a 4 week month (a common mistake) can be confusing as each month varies in number of days. We use the following formula:
Weekly number of scheduled hours x hourly wage x 52 weeks (1 year).
Here at Seattle Nanny Network we have seen many successful employment relationships, and some that ended due to preventable misunderstandings. Don’t wait to communicate! Open and honest dialogue is the best way to ensure that both family and nanny share realistic expectations. Our agency takes responsibility for establishing expectations for both parties based on industry standards as well as our decades of experience.
Baseline recommendations include paying market rate wages and benefits, drawing up a formal work agreement and honoring it, treating your employee with respect but maintaining professional boundaries, scheduling regular informal check-in meetings and less frequent formal evaluations, and considering building in a longevity bonus/annual raises to your budget.
We currently offer backup care to clients of Seattle Nanny Network only. We are not taking new family members to the backup care program at this time, due to labor shortages.
Just as it would be challenging for a teacher or daycare worker to do their job if the parents stayed in the classroom all day, a nanny can be challenged by parents who are home while they are doing their job. This can be an easier arrangement to make work with infants, who may be unaware that their parents are in the next room. Toddlers and older kids however, will often prefer their parents over the nanny, and they are smart! This poses a challenge to the nanny who is attempting to keep them occupied while parents are near by, or periodically popping in to say hello. Parents and nanny being on the same page and openly communicating can go a long way in making this a workable arrangement.
Many nanny candidates have worked in homes, daycares, and educational settings with video surveillance systems. They understand that documentation of care protects them, as well as the children in their care.
That said, if you have a concern about the nanny’s performance for any reason, you should never wait to see what a hidden camera reveals. We recommend openly and respectfully sharing your concerns with your nanny. If video surveillance is important to you, we recommend installing cameras where they are visible. Open communication ensures you won’t lose your nanny over the discovery of a hidden camera which would likely be interpreted as a lack of trust.
We offer a unique program with a range of replacement packages and a sliding scale of fees depending on the package you choose. Included with each one-time fee fee is a “free replacement” window. If the nanny leaves during this time, you will receive a replacement at no extra cost. Outside of this window, you still receive discounts on any additional fee. We offer free or discounted replacements from 60 days to 365 days.