Background Checks

10 Reasons to Run Background Checks on Babysitters

Picking someone to watch your kids may not sound like too much of a challenge, but there is a lot more to it than just picking a number from the phone book and calling it a day. Parents need and want to know that the stranger who is taking care of their children is competent and safe. Hence, the background check. This process is a way to allay family fears as well as to help guarantee that choices will be safe. Not all background checks are created equal, so if you hired your sitter through an agency ask what sorts of checks have been performed. The list below contains some reasons why a background check is a good idea, as well as a look at what a background check might cover.

  1. Unknown Quantities – If you don’t already know your sitter personally you will need some assurance that the care-provider you choose is well-qualified.
  2. Peace of Mind – A background check can provide a measure of relief for parents who are understandably anxious about leaving their children with a complete stranger.
  3. Good for Everyone – Parents and their children aren’t the only beneficiaries of a background check. If you hire your sitter through a service, the service itself will gain in reputation if all staff members are certifiably safe.
  4. On the Run – Not all of the odd-ball circumstances that make it to lists like this happen on a regular basis, but a single occurrence is one-too-many. In this light, you may want to know that your sitter isn’t on the run from pulling a bank job three states away.
  5. Finances – Your sitter may have some financial responsibilities to handle while she is on the job. Clients are happier when a sitter has a proven track record for honesty.
  6. Driving – It’s likely that your care-provider will be driving your children to-and-fro, and she may be using your vehicle for this transportation. Your insurance may be covering the sitter as well, so you want to know that he or she has a good driving record.
  7. Sexual Predators – Nobody wants a child molester to have any access to children, and a background check should uncover any evidence of criminal behavior in this regard.
  8. Company Reputation – A company or agency that represents care-providers is only as good as the people it hires, so background checks are a must, and they need to be comprehensive.
  9. Resume – A sitter and/or a babysitting agency will be able to show background check results. In essence, they become part and parcel to the resume of a sitter or an agency, something by which they will be judged.
  10. Current Certifications – Concurrent with checks on criminal and credit history are examinations of licensing and certifications. Everything should be up-to-date and certifications should be posted prominently.

You may not need to go through much of a check if you are dealing with neighborhood children whom you have known since they were knee-high, but you will want to make sure that anyone strange to you checks out.