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Why Hiring For Your Nursery Is So Hard – And What To Do About It

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Are you feeling frustrated about the lack of available nursery staff? Does it seem impossible to find reliable and skilled team members? Are you stressed about the time and money it takes to recruit and retain valuable employees?

At MBK, we know what it takes to run a nursery and we understand your predicament. Over the last 12-18 months it’s become increasingly difficult to source talented and available nursery workers. 

So why is it so hard to find qualified nursery staff and what can you do about it? We have all the crucial info and answers right here…

Where Have Our Staff Gone?

So why has it become so challenging to source available nursery workers? Where have they disappeared to and why have they gone?

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Unprecedented Times Cause Big Changes

During the pandemic that came with Covid, lives were turned upside down; we were quickly reminded to take stock of the important things in our life. This led to many people re-evaluating their career paths and re-setting their priorities.

For some, this meant a change in commitments. Many nursery workers chose to shift to work-from-home jobs or part-time positions so they had more time for family, friends and leisure activities. The pandemic reminded them to spend more time on the things they love. 

Undervalued & Uninspired

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Many nursery workers have decided to re-train or enter completely different fields of work. Either due to the pandemic or simply because they have become disillusioned with working in childcare. 

They feel undervalued and underpaid due to a lack of investment and appreciation from the government. We can all relate to this feeling. Childcare is important yet tiring work; nursery staff often feel overworked, underpaid and unappreciated.

Unavailable Funds

More so than ever before nursery employees are asking for more benefits and defining particular terms of employment. It’s no bad thing. We all aspire to better conditions for staff and families alike in our nurseries. We know you wish you could offer everything your staff ask for.

But the reality is, that it makes running your nursery ever more expensive when finances are already stretched. Unable to meet their requests, the best of your most valued staff are tempted to head elsewhere to get what they’re looking for.

So what can you do about these struggles and realities? How can you recruit and retain reliable, trustworthy and enthusiastic people to make your nursery an efficient business and the most supportive place for the families you serve?

We tackle that next.

What’s The Secret To A Good Recruitment Campaign?

Attracting talented and dependable staff for your nursery is crucial to your success. Without motivated and reliable staff you can’t offer a nursery setting of the highest quality. We get how worrying this problem is.

So we’ve put these top tips together to help you find and keep skilled staff:

Create An Interesting & Informative Job Advert

You’ll be competing with many other nurseries, so make sure you stand out from the crowd! Grab attention with an interesting and informative job advert. Make some jokes. Tell them what they’ll be missing out on if they don’t apply. Get creative. It will spark their interest and ensure the best of the bunch make a beeline for your nursery.

Make It A Sales Pitch

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Similarly, think of your recruitment campaign more like a sales pitch. Tell potential staff all the things they’ll gain by working for your nursery. The opportunity to nurture young children. Care for the youngest in society. Inspire them with a sense of purpose. Tell them about the perks and the benefits you do offer. Sell your nursery to them!

Make It About More Than The Money

What else does your nursery offer besides a paying job? Take some time to think about the unique benefits of your nursery. Do you give a free uniform? Can you offer flexible hours? Free or subsidised childcare for their children? Tell interested applicants about your values and ethos. Let the soon-to-be staff know about the community they’ll become a part of. 

Keep Costs Low

As people with feet on the ground, we recognise how important it is to keep your running costs low. One way you can reduce recruitment costs is by meeting applicants online via video call. It saves everyone time and money and you can easily and cheaply select your favourite applicants for a further interview.

Attend A Jobs Fair

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Another fantastic cost-effective way to find suitable staff is by attending a local job fair. You can put up a stand for free or minimal charge and gain access to huge numbers of job-seekers. With very little effort on your part, you can advertise your nursery and proclaim its wonders to a captive audience!

Be Responsive

Be sure to respond quickly to brilliant applicants and new team members. Get ahead of the competition by quickly replying to enquiries and promptly arranging interviews. Continue to keep a close eye on new staff and help them settle into their role with your nursery. Be around to answer questions and respond to any problems as they arise so they feel supported and valued.

Be The Change You Want To See

Finding and hiring skilled staff for your nursery has become increasingly difficult since the pandemic of 2020. Lives have shifted and priorities changed. Finances have also become further stretched. Retaining your valuable staff has become an additional issue with many employees going elsewhere for greater validation and pay.

If you want to onboard proactive and capable staff, you need to be the change you wish to see. Highlight what you do offer rather than focus on what’s missing. Stand out from the crowd. Get creative with advertising. Invest in your employees with unique benefits and attention. Put yourself out there and let people know why your nursery is a fantastic place to be.

Would you like to find out more about how to attract and keep valuable team members? Get in touch with our knowledgeable team today. With decades of experience running nurseries, you can trust our advice and expertise.

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