Know Your Worth: Differentiating Benefits and Perks as a Nanny

Blog Know Your Worth Differentiating Benefits and Perks as a Nanny (1)by Tré Moment of Mommy’s Day Off

Many times, we see families attempt to lump the perks of a job into the anticipated salary for the job.  Surely some agencies have a hard time with getting families on the same page when deciding how best to create a reasonable and enticing employment package for nanny candidates.  We want to help nannies understand how to differentiate between benefits and perks so that they may have a better experience of self-advocacy with families or agencies alike.

To begin, let’s share the definition of perk which is: become or make more cheerful, lively, or interesting. This typically implies that the perk for something is an unexpected way of adding value to a job.  It comes with the job. It has nothing to do with qualifications, skill set, or even experience but is literally available simply due to the nature of the job.  What are some examples? If a job requires a person to travel, the cost of travel does not bring the salary requirements down. The fact that the person accrues airline miles from traveling is a perk to them.  Or that they may fly first class is a perk to them. This would be the same for nannies!

So how are benefits defined, you ask? An advantage or profit gained from something, is the first definition provided for benefits.  To be completely honest, this definition is how we want you to recognize when something should be at your expense or at your employers’.  Who is gaining the advantage by the situation? Is the family gaining the advantage by having a live-in provider, YES! Is the family gaining the advantage by having you travel with, for, or to them, YES! Let’s use that as the example. Your employer wants you to live in.  They are stating that room and board is a fair exchange for childcare.  How could it be when there are expectations of flexibility, lack of privacy, and more when you agree to be a live in?

A payment or gift made by an employer, the state, or an insurance company, is the next definition.  If the family wants the nanny to have a car, is the nanny supposed to expect less pay? No. The nanny seems content with not having a vehicle or is making it work so them having a vehicle is in benefit to the family and the family is the employer. As employers they may decide to offer benefits that the employee also contributes to such as insurance or retirement contributions, however they still benefit by offering them and contributing to them.

The side benefitting (at all, or the most) covers the cost.  Please do not allow anyone to guilt you into accepting a rate because of what they are doing for you to work there.  If the family relocates you, even if they are relocating you to an area you want to live in, that does not mean you have to accept a lower rate.  Always be willing to negotiate. Always have wiggle room in both directions (to add or take away) in your employment agreement.  In this field your entire purpose is to care for others, so be intentional about caring for yourself and advocating for yourself during contract negotiations because that truly tends to be the only time everything you are considering is solely about you/your needs.

Tré Moment is the President of Mommy’s Day Off providing coaching as well as other educational/professional development opportunities to professional in-home care providers, and you can connect with her on social media with @mstreisgreat where available.

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