Employment Contract – Frequently Asked Questions

Holiday pay? What is this 12.07% holiday pay? Do I pay extra for that?

Firstly, no need to worry. The cost of any holiday pay is already taken into account in the £13 per hour overall cost. So you don’t need to pay anything extra!

The way it works is as follows:

By law, as the nanny’s employer, you need to provide paid annual leave. A full-time nanny would receive statutory 28 days (5.6 weeks) of paid leave (inclusive of bank holidays). Since your nanny will be working a few hours each day, it’s easiest to calculate holiday pay by the hour. 

A simple way to think about this is that your nanny will earn 12.07% of paid leave for every hour worked (i.e. if a nanny works 10 hours, then they have also earned 1.207 hours of paid leave). This 12.07% is equivalent to 28 days of paid leave for a full-time nanny.

To make it even more simple, we typically pay out any earned paid leave at the end of each month. This means that you won’t need to keep track of how many hours of holiday pay has been earned. It also means that if the nanny takes a holiday, then it will be considered an unpaid holiday. 

How much does it cost overall?

Our pricing structure is really simple. The service costs:

These costs are all-inclusive (gross). Per family not per child.

We’ve kept it simple because childcare is complex enough and we want everything we do to make parents’ lives easier.

This cost covers your nanny’s pay, the costs associated with you being an employer (e.g. taxes) and our services.

Unfortunately, neither tax-free childcare nor childcare vouchers can be used with this service as our nannies are not Ofsted registered. The cost of getting your nanny Ofsted registered usually outweighs the savings from paying in this way.

*Please note: Our short-term coronavirus contracts operate slightly differently. For these contracts, we are temporarily making DBS checks optional for a £50 fee. You can find more information here.

Are the nannies available in the holidays? 

Our nannies are very often available to help during school holidays and inset days, and usually love picking up the extra hours. 

Holiday work should be arranged directly with your nanny, and as far in advance as possible. You can pay for these hours in the usual way through Koru Kids. 

We have an active online community where nannies can swap tips for crafts, cooking, outdoor activities and trips, so they’re always armed with new ideas, meaning full-day shifts are no problem.

Please be aware that not all nannies will be able to help during the holidays and it does depend on each nanny’s availability. If holiday care is essential for you, please make sure you discuss this with nannies at interviews.

If your nanny is unable to work in the holidays, let us know and we can try to find another nanny to help out. We can’t guarantee we’ll be able to find cover, but we’ll always try our best!

Do I have to pay the nanny all year around?

No, you can just employ the nanny during term-time for the hours that you’ve contracted them for.

And do I have to pay them for days off on holiday?

No you don’t. The cost of holiday pay is already taken into account in the £13 per hour overall cost.

What is the notice period?

For standard contracts

Our standard nanny contract has a probation period of 2 weeks, where you or your nanny must give 24 hours notice to end the contract.  After this probation period, the notice period is 2 weeks.

As you’re the legal employer of the nanny, you’re free to negotiate different terms if you wish, and we can change the contract accordingly. It’s always best to get such changes in writing, to ensure there’s a written record of your nanny agreeing to the amended terms.

It’s important to note that UK employment law around notice periods is weighted in favour of the employee (in this case, the nanny). It’s highly unlikely, but if they quit without working their notice period, you cannot withhold pay for hours they’ve already worked.

For short-term coronavirus contracts

There is no probation period for these contracts. Instead, there will be a 24 hour notice period for the first 4 weeks of the arrangement, during which time you or your nanny need only give 24 hours notice to end the contract.

An end date of 4 weeks from your nanny’s first shift will initially be included in the contract. This can easily be extended if you and your nanny would like to keep working past this point. If you work together for more than 4 weeks, the notice period extends to 1 week, the statutory minimum. 

You can also move to a standard agreement at any time by mutual consent.

Do I get a trial period with the nanny?

Yes, you can definitely have a trial. Some families like to follow up their first meeting or interview with a run through of the normal after school routine, or a ‘play date’ where the nanny spends some time with the children. This gives you a chance to check their suitability for the role and to see how they get on with the kids before deciding whether to proceed. 

An important note on trials: 

We only carry out DBS checks for nannies once a family has decided to hire them. Therefore at trial stage, most nannies will not be DBS checked (they’ll only have one if they’ve worked with a family through Koru Kids before or from a previous job). 

We always recommend that you are present during the trial.

Trials should be used as a chance to see your nanny performing the after school routine and to make sure they get on with the kids. They should not last for more than one or two shifts or be used as probation periods. Our contracts begin with a two week probation period as standard, during which time you only need to give your nanny 24 hours notice if you feel things aren’t working out.*

Some families prefer to skip the trial and use the probation period instead to make sure their nanny is the right fit. As soon as you progress to a contract with a probation period, we’ll immediately begin the DBS check process for your nanny.**

*For our short-term coronavirus contracts, there is no probation period. Instead, there will be a 24 hour notice period for the first 4 weeks of the arrangement.

**This does not apply to short-term coronavirus contracts. We will only begin processing your nanny’s DBS check once you have confirmed you would like us to carry one out. There will be a £50 fee in this instance. You can find more information here.

How does payment work?

Your nanny is able to submit hours as often as they like, and you’ll be sent these for review every Saturday. You will be notified by email (or by notifications on the Koru Kids App). You’ll then have up to the 28th of the month to review and approve/adjust the nanny’s hours (we recommend doing this regularly). You will receive an invoice estimate around this time too.

We’ll then send you a final invoice (for your records) on the first day of the month. If the total is less than the minimum hours, we’ll round up your invoice. The payment itself will be taken automatically by direct debit on the 7th of the month (7 days after your invoice).

We ask all of our families to pay for their childcare with a Direct Debit. Why?

  • It’s easier for you: no more forgetting to pay or annoying bank transfers
  • You stay in control: you’ll get your invoice 7 days before being charged, so you’ll always have time to tell us if the amount isn’t right
  • You’re protected: all payments are covered by the Direct Debit Guarantee meaning your bank will refund you in the unlikely event something goes wrong
  • It ensures your nanny gets paid on time: our nannies rely on your payment for income and using Direct Debit ensures they get paid on time

Where the nanny’s start date is more than two weeks in advance we will ask for a Reservation Deposit to secure the nanny. Find out more here.

Is my nanny entitled to sick pay?

For specific queries about sick pay related to Coronavirus, see our full Coronavirus guide here.

Sick pay can be really complicated but don’t worry – we’ll calculate everything for you, and if your nanny is eligible we handle all the admin. You can find out more about Statutory Sick Pay here: https://www.gov.uk/statutory-sick-pay.

Who is eligible for sick pay? 

Due to the majority of roles being part-time afternoon work, unfortunately most Koru Kids nannies are not eligible for Statutory Sick Pay (SSP). To qualify for SSP your nanny must:

  • Earn an average of at least £118 per week (Weekly earnings average is typically calculated on the previous 8 weeks of employment)
  • Tell you they are sick within 7 days
  • Have been ill for at least 4 days in a row (including non-working days)

*If your nanny is self-isolating because of coronavirus (COVID-19), and is eligible for SSP, they will now be able to receive SSP from their first day of isolation (rather than day 4). More information can be found here.

**If your nanny is self-isolating because of coronavirus, but is not eligible for SSP, it is still our strong recommendation that you should continue to pay them. More guidance on what to do in this situation can be found here.

Who pays the Statutory Sick Pay (if my nanny is eligible)?

If you have agreed to work with a nanny before 20/3/2020:

  • Koru Kids will absorb the risk. If your nanny falls sick we will calculate and pay any Statutory Sick Pay on your behalf. We’ll cover the cost of any sick pay you would owe them. 
  • If your nanny has informed you that they are sick, and you think they might be eligible for sick pay, please inform us and we will make sure your nanny is paid if they are indeed eligible.  
  • In the event of your nanny isolating due to Covid-19, please see our full Coronavirus guide here to find out what you need to do.

If you have agreed to work with a nanny after 20/3/2020:

While our standard policy was to cover SSP on behalf of families, unfortunately due to the Covid-19 crisis and the sharp increase in sick pay claims, we are no longer able to cover sick pay for new nanny arrangements.

How do I pay for sick pay? How much do I need to pay?

  • An employee can receive up to £94.25 a week Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) for up to 28 weeks if they’re too ill to work.
  • Koru Kids will administer the sick pay for you. If your nanny has informed you that they are sick, and you think they might be eligible for SSP, please inform us and we will calculate how much your nanny needs to be paid, pay them and invoice you for this amount.
  • If your nanny is eligible for SSP due to Covid-19, the Government has recently announced that it will repay all SSP claims for employers with less than 250 employees. We believe this will apply to families employing a nanny. We will administer this for you as well (including making the application to HMRC on your behalf to reclaim the SSP). More information here.

Is my nanny entitled to maternity pay?

In the event that you need to pay maternity pay, we’ll cover this for you. Maternity pay can be really tricky to calculate, with qualifying criteria and varying pay rates to negotiate. As the nanny’s employer, you’re legally liable for Statutory Maternity Pay (which can exceed £5,000 a year) – but don’t worry, Koru Kids will handle all the admin and pay this for you.

You can find out more about Statutory Maternity Pay here: https://www.gov.uk/maternity-pay-leave/pay

Does Koru Kids have Grievance, Disciplinary, and Dismissal Procedures?

As the employer, parents have a duty to handle grievances, disciplinary, and dismissal proceedings with their nanny professionally. Most grievances can be resolved informally, with fairness in mind. Koru Kids can be on hand to help advise you, should you have questions, but most situations are best resolved between you and your nanny directly.

We advise parents to follow the principles of the ACAS Code of Practice guidelines: http://www.acas.org.uk/index.aspx?articleid=2174