Ruby Brown : Founder of Nanny Match

Ruby grew up in a little bay on the south east coast of New Zealand and spent her childhood in nature, exploring the beach and bush. She holds a Bachelor of Primary Education and enjoyed three years teaching before I moved to Melbourne for a break. Ruby quickly fell into the world of nannying and Nanny Match was born in 2011.

1. Why do you think more people are choosing to have a nanny over creche / long daycare?

A nanny can provide a more flexible and personal approach to childcare—with no waitlists!

2. You have a unique array of carers in your service - what kind of person attracts you & your brand?

We look for people who are naturally empathetic, open-minded, patient, creative, understanding and reliable.

3. What is unique about your service Nanny Match? For parents and for nannies?

We are a people-first company, so rather than focusing on fast-growth, we're interested in offering a personalised service for both nannies and families. We know that a successful nanny-family match comes down to compatibility, trust and open communication, so we invest time in nurturing both sides of the relationship to ensure a successful, long-lasting match.

For our families we offer peace-of-mind; first we interview and screen candidates and then guide both parties through placement agreements and supported trial periods. We provide above-board employment as well as automated time-tracking and payroll, so our families can enjoy childcare without the admin.

For nannies, we offer legitimate employment with like-minded people and ongoing support. We take care of time-sheets (automated), PAYG tax instalments, superannuation contributions, insurance and WorkCover. We also offer a yearly pay rise and run social events.

4. How would you describe your experience as a nanny?

After working as a primary school teacher, the opportunity to spend one-on-one time with a child was a complete dream! It felt like more of an adventure than a job, filled with opportunities to teach and learn about language, human connection, play, philosophy, art and the world around us.

5. What are your hopes for the nanny industry? In what ways does it need to grow and develop?

The nanny world is a precious and unusual space. There's more room for the child and real-world learning—it's more about the child's experience than the adult's expectations. I love hearing how nannies help parents return to work and the special connection between families and nannies.

My hopes for the nanny industry:

  • Higher pay rates for childcare workers and lower childcare fees for families

  • Changes to superannuation legislation so more nannies receive super

  • More education around worker's rights, minimum wage and employment standards

  • Zero tolerance for services advertising jobs at less than minimum wage

  • More nannies and carers earning a fair, contemporary living wage

These changes would make it easier to find and keep a quality nanny.

6. You have described Nanny Match as a people-first agency—can you explain further?

I have met thousands of nannies and they have taught me one key lesson. If a nanny is happy, the children will be happy. This ethos sits at the very centre of Nanny Match and influences every business decision. We opt in to ideas that will make a positive difference to our employees and we steer clear of anything that will have a negative impact. We hold regular meetings with our nannies to offer support and hear ideas. I value their minds and hearts and I have a deep respect for their work. My favourite Maori proverb says it all:

He aha te mea nui o te ao? He tangata, he tangata, he tangata.

What is the most important thing in the world? It is the people, the people, the people.

7. You are an artist also - how has that influenced Nanny Match and your career as in in home carer?

Making art is practicing thinking outside the box, around the box, under, over and through the box. It's about communicating ideas in different ways, finding different solutions, experimenting and always learning. I've found this way of thinking to be super helpful in business and when working with children. Children constantly challenge our adult thinking, so we need to be able to open up, go with the flow and explore ideas.

As a nanny, my adult mind was challenged in new and wonderful ways—I was able to open my thinking and conversation with children, go with the flow and explore their ideas.

8. Tell us more about your work as an artist? Do you have any up coming projects?

I grew up in an artist's home, so drawing, painting have always been there. I went to VCA while I was nannying and I loved my time there. It was the first time I'd been part of a larger conversation where ideas were really pushed and pulled in every direction. That conversation continued throughout my nanny placement, as I worked for an artist and we talked about art in-between nappy changes and kinder runs. I started a studio practice and I've exhibited around Melbourne—including a group show with my employer! I've put my official practice on hold as Nanny Match grows, however I still keep my visual diary and I'm working through some ideas for future projects.

instagram : @nannymatch

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