Is there any feeling worse than that premonition that comes over you as the phone rings just minutes before the sitter is supposed to show up? You already know it’s going to be a cancellation, throwing a wrench in your plans, whether it’s an important meeting, a night out with friends, or a date night. Sitters cancelling is an unfortunate part of life – they’re human, too, and they get sick, get stuck at other obligations, or, especially if you hire teen sitters, sometimes just cancel for social reasons. Don’t worry, eventually you will get over it, but it helps if you have a list of backup plans to rely on when it happens

Online sitter sites are a great place to go to find a wealth of childcare professionals and part-time babysitters in your area. They make searching easy, convenient, quick, and safe. However, before you hand over your most precious little angel to a person you just met online, you need to do a little more than a quick chat. Do the work of interviewing and vetting potential sitters ahead of time so that you have plenty of candidates to fall back on when you have to deal with a last minute cancellation.

  1. Consider finding a sitter through a reputable agency: Not only will a reputable company carry out the candidate vetting process for you while conducting thorough background checks, they will also assist you with creating an agreement between you and the sitter. You can use a sitter website like Sitter.com to search for agencies, independent sitters, or daycares, filtered depending on your preferences.
  2. Interview the candidate thoroughly: When interviewing your prospective sitter, it is important to ask them specific questions that directly relate to your family. Find out about their previous experience and if they can flawlessly execute all the duties you assign them. Platforms like Sitter.com make it easy for you to copy your notes directly to the candidate’s profile (for your eyes only), as well as create a favorites list of profiles. That means that when your number one pick cancels last minute, you just have to log on, check your favorites list, double check your notes, and give them a call.
  3. References: Make sure you get references from all potential candidates and perform background checks. Get references for your top three candidates, so that you can rest easy during those last-minute situations.
    Certificates, Special Needs, Etc.: To save you time when you search, better sites like Sitter.com have made it easy to narrow down results according to your expectations. That means you only have to view profiles that fit the availability you need, the education or certificates (like CPR) that you want the sitter to have, and that can meet any of your child’s special needs, whether that’s dietary restrictions, diabetes, or a learning disability.
  4. When you get references, conduct background checks, thoroughly interview potential candidates, and use a platform that offers identity protected phone calls, you have nothing to worry about when you hire a sitter online. It really is that easy.