The time has come for you and your nanny to part. There are many amicable ways a nanny may leave your family. They (or you) moved and their new commute is impractical. Your children are now at an age where they no longer need a nanny. However it happens, your nanny is now looking for a new job and you can help by writing a letter of recommendation.
What is a nanny letter of recommendation?
A nanny letter of recommendation details your nanny’s employment, responsibilities, and top qualities. It will be used by your nanny as they seek caregiver jobs with another family, through an agency, or at a childcare facility. They can include your letter with their resume, educational and professional certifications, and other documents that they present to placement agencies, hiring managers, and families.
For a family considering hiring your nanny, a letter of recommendation could replace a verbal reference or at least shorten that call to just confirming details of the employment.
What should you include in a letter of recommendation for a nanny?
In your introduction, state that you recommend your nanny.
Then include details about the job, such as:
Schedule of work with number of hours worked per week
Live-in or live-out
Job responsibilities and duties
Start and end dates
Ages of your children
Brief explanation of why their employment ended
Your contact information (phone and email)
Beyond those details, you should include your nanny’s best qualities, special skills, and achievements. Skills could include expertise in arts and crafts, fluency in a foreign language, or plays a musical instrument.
Be specific and add stories, anecdotes, and events that support those strengths or show how your nanny went above and beyond while on the job.
While you may want to go on and on about your nanny, try to limit your letter to about three to five of their top attributes.
At the end of the letter, state that you regret losing your nanny and reiterate your recommendation. You will also date and sign the letter.
Some things not to put in a letter include wage or compensation information and employee benefits. Also, do not add your physical street address. A phone number and email address are sufficient for a family to contact you if needed.
What are some good attributes to include in a letter?
If any of these apply to your nanny, consider including them in your letter of recommendation:
Loves working with children
Passionate about childcare
Creative ideas for children’s activities
Kept house in order
A good rule when writing your letter is to focus on the qualities that were most important and helpful to you. Think about how your nanny helped you. What was it about them that benefited you and your family the most? That is likely what other families want to know as well.
How do I write a letter?
The most difficult part of writing is often just getting started. Before even writing, give some thought to what you want to say. Why would you recommend your nanny to another family? What would that family want to know about my nanny?
Then brainstorm. Start with a list of five to 10 qualities that describe your nanny. Sometimes it is best to just get words on paper (or on a screen). It does not have to be perfect at first. From there, trim your list to three to five attributes and include a story that supports each of those qualities and speaks to their talent as a caregiver.
Make sure you have someone proofread the letter, so it is free of spelling and grammatical mistakes.
Is it ok to get personal?
When writing a letter of recommendation for your nanny, it is appropriate to be personal and maybe even a little sentimental. The nature of a nanny’s job is personal. They care for the most important possessions in your life – your children. They become part of your family. A letter for a nanny that is impersonal or distant would not send the right message. You could talk about how your nanny made such a positive impact on your family and your children.
What is a good length for a letter of recommendation?
It is appropriate to keep your letter of recommendation to a one, single-spaced page. If your nanny was with you for a long time or you have more to say about them, going to two pages is fitting. There is no need to go beyond a couple of pages. Keep it simple, to the point, and sincere.
When should you write the letter of recommendation?
It is best to write a letter of recommendation for your nanny while your experiences are still fresh. The more you delay, the more difficult it may become to recall specific instances of your nanny’s exceptional job performance.
You can even give the letter to your nanny on their last day on the job.
Reposted with permission from GTM (www.gtm.com)