Nanny help and advice


Nanny help and advice

Nanny help and advice

Information, help, advice and links to help you become a nanny, doula or maternity nurse.

What nanny employers need to know

Nannies are not usually self-employed; they are employed by the family they work for. There are different types of nanny jobs employers should be aware of. Full-time, live-in nannies should have their food and accommodation provided as well privacy for the hours and days when they are off work.

Full-time, live-out nannies average the same working hours, but their salary range is higher as accommodation and food are not included. There are also options to employ a part-time nanny for fewer hours, or a before and/or after school nanny. More than one family may choose to share a nanny and although this nanny-share arrangement can sometimes be quite complex from a contractual, tax, pension and holidays point of view, it is increasingly popular among families and nannies themselves.

As employers, the parents are responsible for checking their employee has the right to work in the UK. They then need to reach an agreement on a gross salary for the nanny and find out exactly how much the total cost will be as this has to include not just the employee’s gross salary, but also the employers’ National Insurance contribution as well as pension contributions.

An employer needs to have employer’s liability insurance, such as that offered by Morton Michel, and has to create the contract of employment for both parties to sign. They then need to register with HMRC as an employer and set up and run payroll.

As your employee, you must provide your nanny with payslips and remember they also have certain statutory rights. These include statutory sick pay, holiday entitlement and maternity leave. They may also include statutory maternity pay and shared parental leave. Employers also need to be aware of taxable benefits such as a nanny driving her employer’s car for her own use and not just to carry out her job.

Voluntary registration

There is no compulsory register for nannies, doulas and maternity nurses these professions in the UK. However, it is possible to register voluntarily with the relevant authorities in the different countries of the UK, while in Scotland nannies may register with a regulated nanny agency.

Employers may request a registered nanny in order to access financial assistance provided by the government that can be used to pay for registered childcare.


Nannies can join the Ofsted voluntary register in England as a home childcarer. This is an important distinction from childminders who are required to join the compulsory register.


There is an approval schem, rather than registration in Wales whereby nannies apply for the Care Inspectorate (Wales) Childcare at Home Voluntary Approval Scheme.

Northern Ireland

Nannies can apply to the Home Childcarer Approval Scheme administered by the four Health & Social Care Trusts. Under the scheme they must submit proof of their childcare and first-aid qualifications.


Nanny agencies rather than nannies themselves are registered with the Care Inspectorate in Scotland. Being registered with any of these regulatory bodies does not mean that a nanny is inspected as other early-years providers are with regard to the quality of their provision. Nor do registered nannies have to comply with any national curricula or frameworks such as the EYFS.

Tax and National Insurance

As employees, nannies must pay both Tax and National Insurance (NI). Your employer – the family you work for – is obliged by law to deduct tax contributions from your gross wages and pay these on your behalf through a Pay As Your Earn (PAYE) scheme to HMRC. NI contributions are similarly deducted and paid on your behalf to HMRC and both are deducted and paid each time you are paid. These rules apply whether you are a full-time, part-time or temporary employee. There is more information on the PAYE system here.

Although the above responsibilities rest with the family that employs you, as an employee you also have certain duties and these include making sure that you are registered in a PAYE scheme. Your payslips have to show your tax code, your gross pay, how much NI and tax you pay as well as any pension contributions and your net pay. This is why it is important to receive payslips each time you are paid so that you can check on this. Remember, both you and your employer risk falling foul of the law if you are not paying the right amount of tax and national insurance.

Finding a nanny job online

It is becoming increasingly popular for nannies to find jobs via the internet as a growing number of families advertise directly online. However, you need to be wary and know how to safeguard yourself from falling victim to advertisements that are not genuine or families that are trying to cut corners and are unwilling to set up a proper employer-employee relationship.

Avoid using job sites that do not allow for secure messages to be sent via the site as this way you don’t need to give any personal contact details straight away.

Before you start your job search, make sure your CV is up-to-date and effective at showcasing your experience and qualifications, but avoid including too much personal information such as your date of birth, passport or NI numbers or full address and do not include the surnames of previous families you have worked for. Never post your CV on social media or other open sites where it could be viewed by anyone.

You also need to pull together all your certificates as proof of your first-aid and other qualifications, insurance, Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) check, proof of address and identity and references. It is also a good idea to have a file of ideas for activities, meals, play and routines for different age groups of children so you are prepared for the interview stage.

Next, if you are advertising online, you need to think carefully about your profile. Pick an appropriate photograph of yourself and ensure you have completed all the fields required; it is important to give complete information to avoid wasting time for either you or the prospective employer.

Once in contact with a family, you need to remain security aware; for example agree to meet in a public place for an initial interview such as a café and let someone know where you are going and how long you expect to be.