– Parents also want Homework/Curriculum Support and will pay more for it –
AUSTIN, Texas, August 08, 2022--(BUSINESS WIRE)--As we approach another hectic back-to-school season, many parents are facing an added stressor this fall – return to offices and hybrid work – that is forcing them to adjust their childcare arrangements. Care.com analyzed last year’s back-to-school childcare hiring trends to identify key dates and trends that might help families streamline and more successfully navigate the hiring process.
"Return to in-person jobs and reconfigured hybrid schedules will cause major rifts in parents’ current childcare plans," said Maressa Brown, Senior Editor, Care.com. "Families may need to interview and hire multiple caregivers to fill gaps in their weekly schedules, making planning and flexibility key this year. We know parents across the country are facing the same challenge and are looking for tips on how to get ahead of the demand."
Trends and Key Dates
August 2021 was the peak month on Care.com for the majority (65%) of families looking for back-to-school care, with August 23rd being the most popular day to post back-to-school jobs. Back-to-school caregivers got out ahead of the demand in 2021 with more posting their profiles on August 9th than on any other day during the month.
On average, across the U.S. last year, parents posted their back-to-school jobs approximately 22 days before the expected start date. Since the school year resumes at different times in different regions of the country, key dates for back-to-school care searches varied. In 2021 the most popular dates to post back-to-school jobs by region were: August 1st/Midwest; August 10th/West and South; and August 23rd/Northeast.*
Parents want Homework/Curriculum Support and will pay more for it
From 2019-2021, Care.com found that the start of the school year also drove a spike in interest in homework or curriculum help. More than one-third (34%) of parents looking for back-to-school care specified these functions last year, with these job posts spiking in August and September. Care.com is already seeing a similar trend emerging this month.
And, despite the high cost of care, parents are willing to pay even more for additional help with schoolwork. In 2021, on average parents offered to pay 2% more/hour for these services, or an average of $18.02/hr vs. $17.66/hr.
Optimizing the search for back-to-school help
In addition to noting the key dates related to finding back-to-school care, families can streamline the process by following these steps:
Figure Out Your Fall Work Schedule: Take a close look at your weekly schedule to identify exactly when you’ll need care throughout the week. Understanding your care gaps will help determine if you’ll need a nanny, after-school help, a sitter, or a combination of caregivers.
Identify Your Needs: Before starting your search, know exactly what skills you’d like your caregiver to have and the responsibilities she’ll handle. Many babysitters and nannies may be willing to negotiate "add-ons" to their role. Examples might include tutoring, walking the dog, meal prep, laundry, or running errands for additional fees.
Start Your Care Search ASAP: Starting your care search as soon as possible means you’ll have the widest selection of caregivers to choose from before demand surges.
Interview/Trial Run Multiple Candidates: Allow time to interview and have a "trial run" with a few different nanny and babysitter candidates. This will help you make sure they’re a good fit with your kids and, if you need more than one regular caretaker to fit your schedule, this is a good way to line them up.
Pay Your Sitter/Nanny Legally: Start the relationship off on the right foot by paying your caregiver legally. Given the cost of care, you’ll very quickly reach the $2,400 IRS yearly threshold requiring you to pay your household employee on the books. By doing so, you’ll be able to access tax credits to offset childcare costs if you are otherwise eligible and access money from your Flexible Spending Accounts, if you have them and the costs are included.
Have A Backup Plan: Create a back-to-school backup plan for what you’ll do if the unexpected happens, like your child becomes sick or your scheduled sitter becomes unavailable. Many employers now offer backup childcare for just these reasons so start by checking in with your HR department to see if there’s help available that you didn’t know about.
*U.S. regions are designated as follows: Midwest (SD, NE, ND, MO, MN, KS, IA, WI, OH, MI, IN, IL), Northeast (VT, RI, NH, ME, MA, CT, PA, NY, NJ), South (TX, OK, LA, AR, WV, VA, SC, NC, MD, GA, FL, DE, DC, TN, MS, KY, AL) and West (WA, OR, HI, CA, AK, WY, UT, NV, NM, MT, ID, CO, AZ)
Available in more than 20 countries, Care.com is the world’s leading platform for finding and managing high-quality family care. Care.com is designed to meet the evolving needs of today’s families and caregivers, offering everything from household tax and payroll services and customized corporate benefits packages covering the care needs of working families, to innovating new ways for caregivers to be paid and obtain professional benefits. Since 2007, families have relied on Care.com’s industry-leading products — from child and senior care to pet care and home care. Care.com is an IAC company (NASDAQ: IAC)
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