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Household Managers – What are they and why do I need one?

Household Managers – What are they and why do I need one?

Here at Placement Solutions we regularly receive questions from new clients asking exactly what duties their Household Manager is able to do There is often a confusion between cleaners and housekeepers so we thought we would explain using the DEMA definitions.  DEMA is the acronym for the Domestic Estate Managers Association of which we are a proud member.

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Interview styles - One approach doesn’t fit all

Interview styles - One approach doesn’t fit all

With the Nanny Pilot being in full flow the recruitment department faces lots of first times and novelties. We do have interviews in recruitment offices in small towns, interviews in family’s homes, interviews with children and dogs around; we have skype interviews and inductions and we can see nannies interacting with children.

Those different situations make it easy to see advantages and disadvantages of each and we thought it a great time to compare different interview styles.

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How much cleaning can a Nanny do?

How much cleaning can a Nanny do?

A recent post here about our household management service touched on the difference between a Nanny and a cleaner. More specifically, it made the point that a Nanny is not a cleaner and should not be expected to do general household cleaning or other household chores. The only exception are tasks that are associated with child care.

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Happy Nanny - Happy Children

Happy Nanny - Happy Children

Here at Placement solutions we believe that a happy Nanny equates to happy children and a happy home.   A nanny is not just a babysitter or a little bit of help to the family he or she is so much more than that.   A Nanny is a mother’s helper;  they are the one-on-one care for your most precious assets while you need to be at work or other such commitments.   A Nanny comes into your home to provide care and education for your children and to help keep them happy, healthy and safe.

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The way we are … what memories are made of

The way we are … what memories are made of

Recently I’ve been helping my friend archive her old family photos for safekeeping and it got me thinking about memories.   Memories are so precious to most of us – I think you’d agree.  Especially precious are memories and photos of loved ones lost, old friends, family, good times, travel destinations and of course the reminders we keep around the home - all the “stuff” that is meaningful to us.  Apart from evoking (hopefully) pleasant memories, these pictures and tid bits also represent a good part of our history.  They tell a story about who we are, who is (or was) important in our lives, our likes and dislikes and a plethora of other information.  Sometimes, they are a talking point at dinner parties and the mere mention of a souvenir or photograph triggers a storytelling exchange between friends.

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Tips on keeping happy and healthy this Winter!

Tips on keeping happy and healthy this Winter!

With winter fast approaching we are finding ourselves slowly losing daylight, sunshine and the lovely warm days! We will soon be cooped up inside with heaters on, rugged up, hot chocolates and going stir crazy! Now is the time to start planning ahead to ensure that you have plenty of ideas to keep the children happy and ensure that they are not consistently asking for things to do! Along with the activities we need to also remember that hygiene at this time of the year is a key thing as we find, parents, nannies and children picking up all kind of flu’s and bugs that can be contagious.

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10 tips of entertaining children inside this winter!

winter activities, health, inside activities, childcare

With winter fast approaching we are finding ourselves slowly losing daylight, sunshine and the lovely warm days! We will soon be cooped up inside with heaters on, rugged up, hot chocolates and going stir crazy! Now is the time to start planning ahead to ensure that you have plenty of ideas to keep the children happy and ensure that they are not consistently asking for things to do!

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The Story of our Household Management Service

The Story of our Household Management Service

Placement Solutions today is probably best known as a nanny agency, but it wasn’t always that way. We actually started out providing a cleaning service, which eventually developed into the home management service that we offer today.

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Families in Crisis

Families in Crisis

Did you know there is help out there for families going through crisis whether it is financial or medical?  We are especially experienced in helping such families.  Some people may receive funding offered by the government.  Those families approved are allowed to access full child care funding to help them through a time of crisis.

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Nanny Pilot hits the road

Nanny Pilot hits the road

We have hit the road running to make this pilot work! We started our travel through regional Victoria to meet with high priority families that know exactly what they require for a nanny. We are also meeting with recruitment companies in each area to ensure they are on the lookout for some great nannies with our minimum recruitment requirements.

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Five ways to make nanny sharing work

Five ways to make nanny sharing work

Nanny sharing is a great way to reduce the cost of in-home child care while adding some extra socialisation into your children’s day. However it works best when it is approached in the right way. While Placement Solutions keep things ‘clean’ by invoicing each family separately, holding joint client liaison meetings and so on, there are a number of factors nanny-sharing families should bear in mind.

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Recruitment in rural regions – growing through change

Recruitment in rural regions – growing through change

With the introduction of the Nanny Pilot Program by the Federal Government, Placement Solutions has recently been appointed as the sole provider for regional Victoria. The  amount of recruitment we need to do has suddenly multiplied and poses new challenges.  The very short-roll out period means we need to develop strategies quickly to ensure we manage this change and growth well.

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Five common mistakes made by new parents

Five common mistakes made by new parents

Okay. Let’s clear the air before we start, because I can feel the heckles rising on the necks of every new and expectant mother reading this article. “What does Louise know about modern parenting?” I hear you saying. “She’s a grandmother! Things have changed. They’re different now.”

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Nannies Needed for Work in the Countryside

Nannies Needed for Work in the Countryside

Exciting changes have happened lately for Placement Solutions and especially in the Recruitment Department.  With our agency being chosen as the sole provider in regional Victoria for nannies as part of the Nanny Pilot Program, the opportunities for working with us just got bigger!  We are now recruiting not only in metropolitan Melbourne but all through Victoria.

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Nanny Pilot versus Rebated Care

Nanny Pilot versus Rebated Care

Did you know that the nanny pilot has started?!  It is a ‘new’ initiative proposed by the government to assist families who cannot access normal rebated care. Basically it is the same eligibility as normal in-home care requirements except you aren’t using up your CCR/CCB. We as an agency have been selected for regional and rural Victoria and hope to help as many families as we can.

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New Year - New CV

New Year - New CV

New Year’s resolutions are not for everyone.  Nevertheless, the beginning of a new year is a great time to look back at where you have come from and, more importantly, to take a good look at where you are heading.

If one of your to-do list items for 2016 is a new job (maybe as one of our amazing nannies), a career change or finishing studies to start your dream career, refreshing your CV is a great first step.  The first impression any new employer will have is your resumé and of course you want your first impression to be a good one.

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Congratulations to the Newly Elected INA Board of Directors

In particular congratulations to our CEO Louise who is the first Australian board member.INA board members volunteer hundreds of hours each year to the organization.  These board members have been voted on by the membership of the International Nanny Association, and will serve for the term 2016 – 2017.

 

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Let’s talk Ethics…Soft Skills as important factor in your application

Let’s talk Ethics…Soft Skills as important factor in your application

Working in childcare means working in an industry that is loaded with ethical and moral questions, values and opinions; even more so when it is in-home childcare. It can be quite easy to oversee what lies right in front of you. That’s why we as recruiters try to point out the important facts right from the beginning. And besides a screening of your ‘hard’ skills, such as knowledge of child development, skills in settling, nappy changes and activity planning, this also involves an assessment of your ‘soft’ skills such as communication skills and, you guessed it, ethical values and positions.

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School Holiday fun

School Holiday fun

Not all parents can afford to go away for school holidays or maybe one parent can have time off from work but the other can't. Travelling with children can be difficult enough let alone trying to travel with the children without your partner. This being said you don't have to leave the kids feeling bored over the school holidays and that last thing you want is nagging children.

So if school holidays are spent at home then devise a list of activities that you can do with the children, this way you have a plan and the children will have something to look forward to, especially on the down days when they is no activity planned. You can't have an activity every day, money doesn't grow on trees.

To help you out we have developed a list of great holiday activities that can be done with children from different age’s groups, especially if you have a toddler or school aged children.

 

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References - The Good, The Bad & The Ugly!

References - The Good, The Bad & The Ugly!

So you have finally taken the plunge and decided to return to the workforce after having children or maybe you’re sick of the same old job and need a change. One of the many things that you need to think about when applying for a new job is your references. You may be able to talk your way through a great phone interview, or even a fantastic face to face interview however; you need reliable and trustworthy references to back you up. Promoting yourself will only get you so far, it’s your references that can easily make or break you when it comes to getting that great job. Therefore, choosing the right people to be your reference can be a critical part of your application process.

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Is Nanny sharing for you?

Is Nanny sharing for you?

Have you started thinking about going back to work?  Have you thought about putting your child into child care?  Is there no room?  Sounds like something we hear often from a lot of parents that contact us.  There seems to be a shortage of child care centres for the ever growing Victorian population.  Many parents are turning to in-home child care agencies to help find a solution to their problem. 

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The importance of thorough reference checks

The importance of thorough reference checks

Hiring quality staff members can be quite challenging at times. Regardless of a thorough resume screening, detailed interview questions and analysis of personal behaviour during all forms of interaction will only show you one side of the person. The recruiter will hardly ever experience the applicant in a working environment. Especially when working with children it can be a difficult situation since we as recruiters don’t have children on hand to see the interaction of applicants with children during interviews. The difference between presenting at an interview and caring for pre-school aged children is also quite huge. Needless to say, we need to hire good quality staff and ensure that they perform as Nanny to the highest of our standards.

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Could you go handsfree this Summer?

Could you go handsfree this Summer?

A couple of weeks ago I found myself unexpectedly locked out of my daughter’s house with my grandson. It was no big deal. We just sat on the couch on the front verandah for an hour while we waited for mum to come back. The best part of the situation was that I did not have my mobile phone with me so the whole time spent with Reuben was ‘hands free’. We just spent the time looking at each other, laughing and having fun.

It reminded me of an article I read not long ago entitled ‘What a “Hands Free” summer looks like’ by Rachel Macy Stafford. The article is from a few years ago and was written from a northern hemisphere perspective, but it is very relevant as we head into our own summer and holiday period.

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Tips for Your Induction

Tips for Your Induction

So you’ve got your dream job and prior to starting you must complete an induction. It’s important at this time not to relax and think that what happens from here doesn’t matter. Just because you got through the phone interview, face to face interview and reference checking doesn’t mean that you can reduce your level of dedication. The induction is a time where potentially you are meeting other employees or Supervisors and Managers. Providing them with a good impression is just as important as leaving a good impression on the recruitment consultants or hiring Manager, as these are the people that you will have the most interaction with and in some cases the people that will recommend you for jobs, provide you with feedback or even do your performance review. Therefore, it’s always best to maintain the same professional approach that you had at interview stage right through your entire career and all job related interactions.

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A Nanny is more affordable than you think.

A Nanny is more affordable than you think.

Everyone would love to have a Nanny in their home - that extra pair of hands to help you out.  A Nanny can bring a huge amount of assistance and knowledge to your family, as well the advantage of having a one on one interaction regarding your child’s development that cannot always happen in a day care setting.   We know what you’re thinking; “how can I ever afford a nanny?”  Well we’re here to tell you that this is actually possible for a majority of families.  Government assistance and rebates are available to most families and at Placement Solutions we can help you access these facilities.

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What it takes to become a Placement Solutions nanny

What it takes to become a Placement Solutions nanny

One of the questions we get most often is “What does it take to become a Placement Solutions nanny?”

Without putting too fine a point on it, we believe our nannies are some of the highest quality, most professional in-home carers you will find in Melbourne.

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Nannying versus long-day care: 5 pros and 5 (possible) cons

Quite a few of our nannies started their childcare careers in long-day care, and we are constantly fielding enquiries from long-day care workers who are interested in making the ‘shift’.

With that in mind we thought it would be worthwhile exploring the pros and cons of nannying compared with long-day care. While working as a nanny provides a wonderful career for many, it isn’t for everyone.

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The do’s and don’ts of “dressing” for an interview.

Applicants sometimes forget or don't realise how important “dressing” is when attending an interview. In some cases it might be the difference between you getting or not getting a job. Although your experience and qualifications should speak for themselves, it’s the image that you portray that can also affect your job application. Employers may feel that if you dress poorly or inappropriately. This then will reflect on their business and as it does not portray the correct or desired image of the company, they will not want to hire you. Therefore, you need to dress for success and leave the ‘right’ impression not the ‘wrong’ impression.

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Does your workplace reflect your values?

We are flexible. We are connected. We are incredibly open and we travel more than for example my grandparents ever even dreamed about. I moved 16,Son343 km from the middle of Germany to Melbourne in order to work where I work. I can’t even start to count all the different backgrounds, nationalities and cultures my friends, acquaintances and colleagues have; the diversity is enchanting. Different cultures, different food, different music, religion, political views. And in the middle of all this variety is you, an individual with your own culture, values and priorities. There is little doubt that in order to be happy and live  a satisfying life you need to be in an environment that is in line with your own culture, your own set of values; a place where you can be yourself. Considering that you spend an average of 8 hours of your day at work you can do the maths and will find that your workplace should definitely be a place that reflects your own values.

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Don’t search for words at an interview – Follow (the) STAR

Working as a recruitment consultant myself I can tell you that we love behavioural interview questions. And we also know that they put applicants in a somewhat difficult situation. I recently read an article on a great method to deal with behavioural interviews and think it is a great tool for all of us to have.

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