For many parents of school aged children, finding childcare coverage for before and after school is a real problem. The hours of operation of early and late childcare programs often don’t provide coverage that is early or late enough, and even if they do, the transportation logistics can make taking advantage of them a real problem for parents who are pressed to be at work on time and don’t have the flexibility to leave work before late care ends .
For these parents, finding a nanny who is willing to work a split shift could offer the perfect solution. A nanny who works a split shift divides her work shift into two segments. Typically, nannies who work shift splits work before and after school hours.
Parents who are interested in hiring a nanny to work a split shift should keep these things in mind:
Parents must advertise to the right demographic. When it comes to working a split shift, part-time daycare workers, students, and teachers are usually the first in line to express interest. Since most split shifts provide for the hours of roughly 9 to 3 off, they lend themselves naturally to students and teachers who are in class themselves during those hours.
Pay is important. Because of the nature of the schedule, nannies who work a split shift may demand a slightly higher hourly wage. While the nanny isn’t working all day, she’s committed to being available in the mornings and afternoons, which prevents her from accepting other paid positions.
Split shift nannies are still employees. If you pay your nanny more than the annual threshold per calendar year, which is $1800 for 2012, your nanny must be classified as an employee, and as such, you must take certain steps to become a legally compliant household employer. Misclassification and tax evasion can result in stiff penalties and fines.
If you expect your nanny to be on-call during daytime hours, you’ll need to compensate her. When it comes to employing a nanny who works a split shift, you can’t have it both ways. If you expect your nanny to be available to pick up your child should he become sick at school or deliver a forgotten lunch to a sobbing child waiting hungrily in the cafeteria, you’ll need to pay her for her availability. Nannies who are hired to work a split shift aren’t typically on call during their off duty hours.
Split-shift jobs have the potential to turn into full-time jobs. Perhaps you realize that you’d like to have someone on call should your child have to come home sick from school. Maybe you’ve discovered that it makes sense to hire a nanny full-time because then you have coverage in place for sick days, school vacations, and school closings. Some nannies who work split shifts are willing to transition to full-time nannies/household managers. When the children are in school, the nanny can tend to the home, run family errands, grocery shop, supervise maintenance workers, and even cook meals. Once the children are in her care, she then reverts back to a more traditional nanny role.
Regardless of how much or little time your nanny is spending with your children or working in your home, anyone who will have responsibility for caring for your children should undergo a thorough background screening consisting of an in-person interview, reference checks, education verification, Social Security Number verification, county cord record checks, national database check, sex offender registry check, and motor vehicle report check prior to her first day of caring for the children.
If the nanny will be transporting the children in her vehicle, you’ll also want to confirm that she has an appropriate insurance policy that provides coverage for transporting children for work and to pay her the IRS business mileage reimbursement rate for when she is on the clock and doing job related driving. If your nanny will be using your vehicle, you’ll want to add her as an additional insured driver and confirm with your agent that she’s covered under your policy.