Career Development

Nanny Job Description: Salary, Duties, & More

Nannies are responsible for the care of children. Nannies perform a variety of childcare duties, including feeding, bathing, and dressing children; teaching them manners and basic social skills; and taking them to school, day care, or recreational activities. nannies are expected to work with children of all ages, including infants.

Nannies are household employees who assist families with their childcare needs. They commonly care for children under the age of twelve, though some nannies specialize in caring for children with special needs or providing assistance to an elderly family member.

Nannies have a lot of responsibility on their shoulders—they have the task of ensuring that children are safe, healthy, and well-adjusted at all times. They must also ensure that they are able to complete their assigned duties successfully, regardless of the circumstances.

Read on to learn more about what it’s like to be a nanny and what it takes to become one yourself.

Nanny Job Duties

Nannies duties can vary greatly depending on the family they work for, but they often include:

  • Planning and preparing meals for children and families
  • Caring for children by playing with them, reading to them, and singing songs to them
  • Providing emotional support and guidance to children so they can grow up feeling confident about who they are and what they can do in the world
  • Ensuring that children get a good amount of outdoor time each day so they stay healthy and happy
  • Helping children with their homework, including supervising while the child works on it if requested
  • Maintaining an updated emergency contact list of phone numbers for doctors, grandparents, babysitters, family members, etc.
  • Clothing the child in appropriate attire for weather conditions (e.g., coats or sunscreen)

Nanny Salary & Outlook

As of May 2020, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the median hourly wage for nannies was $12.24—this equates to just over $25,000 per year. While this is a reasonable wage for the work performed, it is also important to bear in mind that this figure only applies to those who are paid by the hour. Salaried workers would earn a higher wage.

The outlook for nannies is a little uncertain. While the number of childcare workers is expected to grow by 2% between 2019-2029, this is slower than the average for all occupations.

Nanny Job Requirements

Nanny jobs don’t require formal training, but some employers prefer candidates who have some experience working with children.

Education: A high school diploma or GED is required for this position. Many employers also prefer candidates with some college education or training in childcare.

Training: Many nannies receive their training on the job. This allows them to learn specific child care techniques and strategies that work best for the particular family for which they are working. During this time, nannies may also be trained in first aid and CPR.

Certifications & Licenses: No certifications or licenses are required for this job. However, if a candidate wants to work as a certified child care provider or in another related field, they can pursue additional education and training to obtain these credentials.

Nanny Skills

The ideal nanny has a number of skills, including:

Interpersonal skills: A nanny must be able to communicate well with children and parents.

Emotional support: A nanny must be able to comfort children when they are upset, as well as discipline them when necessary.

Nurturing instincts: Nannies need to have a nurturing personality in order to care for the children in their charge.

Ability to provide guidance and direction: A nanny needs to be able to teach the children in her charge how to behave properly, especially if she is watching multiple children at once.

Physical stamina: A nanny must be physically fit enough to handle long days of running around after energetic kids.

Creativity: Children love new games and activities, so a good nanny will always have new ideas for fun things for the kids in her care to do.

Patience: Young children can be very demanding, so a good nanny needs patience and the ability to remain calm under pressure.

Knowledge of child development: It’s important that a nanny knows how young children develop emotionally and physically.

Nanny Work Environment

Nannies work in the homes of clients. They may also work outdoors on trips, such as at a local park or zoo.

This can be a stressful job as well, as a nanny is responsible for the safety and well-being of the child in their care. They must be aware of safety issues, as well as the developmental needs of the child.

The greatest upside to this job is flexibility. If you nanny for the same family for a long period of time, you will get to know your clients very well. This can be very rewarding.

How to Become a Nanny

1. Planning Your Career

If you are looking for a job that will allow you to spend time with children, becoming a nanny is an excellent option. However, before deciding on this career path, it’s important to understand the requirements and responsibilities of the position.

Aspiring nannies should first consider whether they would prefer working in someone’s home or at a daycare center; there are pros and cons associated with each environment so it is best to decide what works best for your personality and lifestyle needs. Additionally, be sure to check out some resources like books or online articles about how to care for specific age groups (such as infants) so that you can hit the ground running when applying for jobs. Finally, once you have secured an interview – make sure that your references are strong. A solid recommendation from a previous employer will help ensure that your application doesn’t get lost in the shuffle.

2. Writing a Resume

A resume for a nanny position should emphasize the skills and experience that are most relevant to childcare. Since this job is based on trust, it’s important that you write about your past experiences in an honest way. In addition to including all of your pertinent qualifications, you will want to describe how they relate specifically to the role.

3. Applying for Jobs

Nannies often look for jobs through trusted personal or professional connections. If you have a network of friends or family with children, you may be able to find yourself a job through this route. If you don’t, consider using websites like to put yourself out there to parents in your area who are in need of childcare help.

4. Ace the Interview

A lot of care goes into preparing for a job interview as a nanny, so make sure you are ready to demonstrate your knowledge of the family you are interviewing with and their individual needs.

When you get to the interview, be sure to dress appropriately and be punctual. Nannies can also expect to answer questions about child development, child psychology, childcare, etc. as well as demonstrating a commitment to the job. Be sure to be friendly and have a positive attitude.


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