Childcare workers at a daycare undertake daily tasks with the children, preparing them for school and introducing them to the community. Because of these duties, childcare workers deal with emotional, physical, and psychological challenges on a daily basis. Many childcare workers remain at the center every day to provide their services. If this sounds like the ideal job for you, here are a few key points to consider as you begin your new career:
Responsible Parents. Childcare workers attend work everyday knowing that they’re planting the seeds for your next generation to grow into good, responsible human beings. If you’re patient and kind, if you relish the fact that you have a stable paycheck that comes with perks, and that is also fun, childcare may be just the right job for you. After all,” caregiver” doesn’t necessarily mean “custodial mother.”
Responsible Professionals. Childcare providers are professionals who must maintain appropriate levels of supervision while ensuring the well-being of the children they serve. If you have knowledge and experience in the childcare industry, or if your childcare business has been established, you are already qualified to practice as a childcare professional.
Flexible Employment. You can choose to work full or part-time; you can work in your pajamas or dress in your suits. You can choose to work independently or under the watchful eye of an experienced supervisor or childcare provider. The more flexible your employment arrangements are, the more likely you are to succeed in your career. If you need to juggle your personal life with your childcare responsibilities, that’s okay-just be honest with yourself and with the business owners about your needs so that you can make wise choices about when and how much time you spend working.
Advertising Your Services. Because childcare providers are service-oriented organizations, they often advertise their services in community bulletin boards, in local newspapers and in magazines. Ask friends and family if they know of any good childcare centers in your area. If not, you can always print their names and contact information on fliers that you can distribute to your employees for free.
Open Up Regular Hours. Make sure that your childcare facility is open all the time, even during holiday seasons. It will be great to have employees who can leave work for the day and come back to a clean and orderly work place at the end of the day. Also, ensure that your childcare facility is open to clients even on weekends and holidays so that customers don’t have to worry about making it to the facility on time.
Give Your Employees Recognition. Accredited training schools for childcare workers can give you information on how to recognize good employees and motivate them to do their best work. In addition, you can assign a small team of childcare workers to handle calls and requests from parents, which can be helpful for staff turnover and customer complaints.
Give Your Employees Training. You can’t discount the importance of continuing education for all childcare workers, especially those who may not have a full understanding of the legalities and regulations concerning child care. A two-week course on basic child care can be enough for those who work in residential settings, but you can expand the course to a more comprehensive curriculum as needed. It’s also a good idea to provide formal continuing education courses for newly hired employees. In the meantime, you can provide online instruction for current workers to help them stay up to date.
Enroll Your Employees in Job Training Programs. Many states require employers to offer job training to their employees, and some even make this a condition of employment. Some programs focus on aspects of childcare, while others cover a broader range of learning. To comply with state laws, make sure your employees take a certified training course when you first hire them. Otherwise, they won’t be covered for work-related accidents or illnesses.
Make sure you provide your employees with safety equipment and devices. Most Americans are aware of laws dictating that employees have a right to work in a safe environment. Installing alarms and other devices can help prevent accidents from happening, as well as ensure that caregivers know where their clients are located. If possible, choose equipment that can’t be disabled easily, so that caregivers don’t have to take their equipment down for cleaning. It’s also a good idea to train employees on how to use these devices so that they don’t become vulnerable in the field.
Work With a Credentialing Agency When Looking for childcare providers, make sure that you choose those who are licensed, bonded, and insured. This way, your employees will be better protected while they’re on the job. Also, check references and ask local agencies for recommendations from former clients. Ask about each childcare provider’s background and how they were able to remain compliant with state and federal requirements. Working with a reputable agency gives you peace of mind that your childcare workers are well-trained and safe.