Guide to Employing a Maternity Nurse
After discussing your requirements we will send through CVs of suitable candidates with references. Once you have reviewed the selection, you can discuss the details of any candidates with us. We can answer most questions for you or arrange telephone or face to face interviews if needed.
Costs & Salary Guide
Maternity nannies work on either a five or six day-week on a 24-hour basis. They are paid a gross salary so they are responsible for their tax and national insurance. Daily and nightly maternity nurses may have travel expenses, food and accommodation costs to pay. It is important to be aware that all maternity nurses will expect time and a half or time off in lieu for all bank or public holidays and they will also request travel expenses to and from the booking.
Salaries should be paid weekly by electronic banking, wire transfer, cheque or cash but must be agreed in advance.
Our maternity consultants will advise you of the specific costs once they know your requirements. Here is a rough guide, according to qualifications and experience.
NEW STARTER MATERNITY NURSES: £160+ per 24 hour
MATERNITY NANNIES: £160 – £220 per 24 hour
MATERNITY NURSES: 1 baby £180 – £250 per 24 hour
Twins £190 – £300 per 24 hour
Triplets £200 – £350 per 24 hour
(Can be negotiable if you are happy to give someone the chance to gain experience with twins or triplets)
DAILY & NIGHTLY: £13 – £18 per hour for singles & Twins £16 – £22 per hour
If the baby is late a maternity nurse will receive 50 per cent of their gross weekly salary from the day they are booked until they work. The nurse should be on call at this time and begin her booking upon request.
The agency introduction fee is separate to the salary. The introduction of a candidate to a client by Eden Maternity is confidential and a full fee will be charged for any nurse engaged as a result of an introduction by Eden Maternity, even if the introduction is made indirectly. Full costs of the agency fee will have been given from the outset with copies sent to you.
Role of a Maternity Nurse
A Maternity Nurse can help provide a smooth introduction to new parents and their new baby into family life. Maternity nurses encourage parent’s involvement and confidence in handling their new baby and promote a positive relationship between other siblings and the new addition.
GENERAL MATERNITY NURSE DUTIES
As well as helping new parents with feeding, a maternity nurse is responsible for all the physical needs of the baby. This will include bathing, changing and settling the baby, as well as taking care of baby’s laundry and nursery.
DUTIES WITH BOTTLE FED BABIES
The nurse is responsible for preparation of all milk feeds, and ensuring all bottles and feeding equipment are clean and sterilised. They will be responsible for feeding the baby, day and night and for establishing a good routine by arrangement with the parents.
DUTIES WITH BREAST FED BABIES
The maternity nurse should observe the mother when she is feeding and offer advice where necessary. The maternity nurse should take the baby after feeds and resettle day and night.
A maternity nurse is expected to be on duty for 24 hours so it is important that they have time to rest so that they can remain pleasant and effective at all times. The nurse should be given a two-three hour break in any day which should be by arrangement with the family.
The nurse may share the baby’s room or have their own room. There may be a bathroom for the nurse’s own use or they may share a bathroom with the baby or other siblings. All food will be provided for a maternity nurse. They should cook their own meals and clean up after themselves at all times. It is not the duty of the maternity nurse to cook for the family, however if mum is breastfeeding or recuperating from a C-Section the nurse should be sensitive and bring snacks or lunch and make sure she maintains her fluids.
Maternity nurses are booked for a six-day week and are on call 24 hours. The nurse should have 24 hours off every seventh day and can either stay at the position with no duties at all during this time or leave for this period.
DAILY/NIGHTLY NURSES ROLE & DUTIES
Daily maternity nurses will generally cover the same role and duties as a 24-hour maternity nurse within the hours they are working. They will assist with settling the baby, routine, feeding and provide advice and support. Daily maternity nurses will usually have daytime meals provided within the home.
The night nanny will come in the early or late evening and stay with the baby overnight. Night nurses will rest when the baby is asleep and need to be provided with a comfortable place to sleep in the nursery or an adjoining room. Although a night nurse will not have meals provided they should have access to drinks and light snacks. They can work between 10 – 12 hours a night and can come to you between one – six nights a week.
THE INTERVIEW PROCESS
The interview is a two way process for you and the prospective maternity nurse to exchange information and see if you work together. Throughout the interview remind yourself that you will have to work closely with them. Due to the nature of their work it can at times be difficult for a maternity nurse to attend interviews. In this instance we would suggest a telephone interview, followed by a meeting at a time convenient to both parties. If the nurse is required to travel to an interview from another town or city they may ask to have their interview expenses reimbursed. This will be discussed and agreed upon prior to the interview taking place
BEFORE THE INTERVIEW
Employing a maternity nurse is a very personal thing and needs to be the correct combination of support and experience to complement your needs. There are a number of things you will have to think about before you start interviewing. These will include:
- Thinking of questions to ask and the type of nurse you would like
- Key qualities you are looking for.
- Whether you require them to take certain days off, travel with you or carry out extra duties
STRUCTURING THE INTERVIEW
A good structured interview helps you find the best maternity nurse for you. You should think about:
- Explaining your needs and expectations
- Finding out the maternity nurse’s views
- Allowing an opportunity for the nurse to ask questions.
- Showing them around the accommodation (if applicable).
SAMPLE INTERVIEW QUESTIONS
Click here for some sample interview questions
EXTRA QUESTIONS & THINGS TO CONSIDER
1) How long do you prefer to be booked for?
2) How much time off do you leave between bookings?
3) Do you structure your time off or are you flexible?
4) If not your first baby, how do you feel about siblings? Please Note, a Maternity Nurse is to care for the mother and baby, they are NOT a babysitter for other siblings.
5) How often do you get asked back to work for a family you have previously worked for when they are expecting their next baby?
6) Have you ever had to cancel a booking as a result or illness or personal issues? If yes, how often and why?
7) How do you usually get paid and do you ask for a deposit?
8) Can you offer information and advice when you leave, on weaning & night routine etc?
9) How many other positions are you going forward for at the moment & how soon are you likely to get booked up for this period?
Think carefully as to whether the person is right for your family. Having a new baby is a very special time for a family and the right maternity sure will only add to the overall experience. Consider the following:
- Did you feel comfortable them, their approach, answers to your questions and their overall level of experience?
- Do you agree on all the issues that are important to you and feel comfortable communicating with them?
- Once you have found a suitable maternity nurse, day or night nurse, you should offer them the position as soon as possible since they may be attending other interviews & may get booked quickly.
BOOKING A NURSE
If you wish to book a maternity nurse through us, we request that you confirm the booking offer in writing including the start date, length of the booking and weekly/ daily or hourly rate of pay for the nurse. A written confirmation can be sent by email, fax or post to Eden Maternity to secure the booking. Some nurses may request a retainer from the employer and this would be by arrangement between the nurse and employer. The retainer would be deducted off the nurse’s first salary payment. You can make an offer to book a nurse subject to receiving satisfactory references.
We advise that you speak to the referees directly. We also suggest you only check references once you are ready to make an offer and the nurse is interested in taking a booking with you.
POINTS TO CONSIDER:
- Check dates of employment, age of the baby they cared for, the approach to feeding and routine.
- Reliability, flexibility and communication
- Strong and weak points.
- Whether the referee would recommend them.
SUGGESTED REFERENCE CHECKING QUESTIONS
- Did you employ them as maternity nurse, day or night nurse or night nanny?
- What was the age of your baby when they started with you?
- When did they work for you?
- Did they meet your expectations?
- Please describe their standard of work.
- Did you find them to be supportive?
- Did they have the appropriate experience you may have been looking for regarding breast / bottle feeding, helping to establish a routine and general care of a new born?
- What approach to routine would you say they used? (i.e. flexible demand into routine or rigid routine)
- Were they organised, clean and tidy within your home?
- What was their attendance and reliability on the job?
- Did they get along with others within your home?
- Did you find them to be discreet and respectful of your family space?
- If you have other children, what was their approach to them?
- Are there any strong points/ weak points regarding them you should know?
- Would you re-employ them in a similar situation?
- Are you happy to recommend them as a maternity nurse, day/ night nurse or maternity nanny?
- Did they complete the full booking with you?
Once you have completed the reference checks and are happy with the feedback you must provide a contract for the maternity nurse, day/night nurse or maternity nanny. This is to include all the details and job details agreed on at interview the confirmation of booking. We can supply a contract and some maternity nurses have their own. The information in the contract needs to include:
- Dates of the booking, number of days and hours of work
- Duties with breast/ bottle fed baby, accommodation, meals, rest period, salary and confidentiality
We will arrange for you and your nurse to receive a signed copy of the contract.
COMMUNICATION WITH PARENTS
If the nurse has any concerns about the baby or the baby becomes ill at any time the nurse will inform parents and a doctor or paediatrician. The nurse should know at all times where to contact parents if they are away and should ensure they have the necessary contact details at hand at all times. The maternity nurse should keep a record of all feeds and we encourage the family to continue with this on their day off.
EVALUATION OF MATERNITY NURSES
Providing and placing the highest calibre maternity nurses, day or night nurses and maternity nannies is of paramount importance to our agency. We send all clients who book a candidate through our agency a quality of service evaluation towards the end of the booking. It is greatly appreciated that should you book a candidate through us you take the time to complete the evaluation form and return it by post or email. This ensures that at any time we are working with the best candidates available.
We fully appreciate that our clients are busy people. Our unique approach means you can be sure that we will introduce only those candidates who have the combination of skills, experience and personality best suited to you. Our experienced maternity consultants will guide and support you through all aspects of the selection process to ensure you receive the right maternity nurse for your family.
If you need further information, please email [email protected]