When should a nanny get a raise?

April 5, 2012

The other day, we received an email from a nanny in Toronto asking about her wage.

I have worked for a family for 18 months. The mother just had her second child in November, and she's getting ready to go back to work after her maternity leave. When I took the job, they only had one child in preschool; now I'll be looking after an infant too. They haven't mentioned any type of raise to me, but I feel that I'm working twice as hard as I used to be. Shouldn't I get more money?

This is a great question. No one would argue that you are now working more. Looking after two children, especially an infant, is a very rewarding but demanding job. It is up to the nanny to determine if she deserves a raise for any reason. But, before you ask for a raise, ask yourself a few questions:

  • Are you doing fewer duties than before because you are looking after the baby? If not, maybe you could talk to the parent about decreasing your other responsibilities instead of increasing your wage.
  • Talk to other nannies working in the area and find out what the going rate for your position is. Perhaps the wage you're getting is reflective of the going rate for two children.
  • Will the other child be going to school soon? This would mean that for a portion of the day you'd be back to caring for only one child, and a wage increase wouldn't be applicable.
  • Can the family afford to give you a raise? You may find that the family has reached their budget for childcare, and is unable to increase your wage.

Don't be resentful or mad that the family hasn't brought the subject up with you yet. Every parent values their nanny, and appreciates the contributions you make to the family. If you do decide to talk to them about a raise, let them know in advance that you'd like to speak with them, and choose a time that works for each of you when the children aren't around so you can have a proper discussion.

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