In the competitive landscape of Early Years and Childcare, nursery managers and owners must strive not only to create a welcoming, nurturing environment for the children in their care but also to build a team that is happy, committed, and skilled. One of the ways to achieve this goal is by becoming an ‘Employer of Choice’. Often thought of as unaccessible to anything but the large chains, increasing numbers of settings are becoming known to their local selection pool as an ‘Employer of Choice’ and with that brings the ability to recruit, retain and grow their teams.
The term ‘Employer of Choice’ describes employers who are recognised for their outstanding work environment and employee conditions but yet its not just about hourly rates and fancy perks.
Here’s why being an ‘Employer of Choice’ is crucial in the nursery sector:
1. Attracting and Retaining Top Talent
First and foremost, an Employer of Choice has a powerful attraction for the most skilled and dedicated professionals in the field. High-quality educators, skilled administrators, and experienced support staff are more likely to seek out and stick with settings known for their excellent employment practices and conditions. This can help reduce turnover, lower hiring costs, and ensure a stable, skilled workforce that can provide the best care and education for children.
2. Promoting Positive Culture and Employee Engagement
Being an Employer of Choice means investing in a work culture that values employees and their contributions. This positive environment fosters stronger engagement and commitment from staff, improving teamwork and collaboration. Engaged employees are more likely to go the extra mile, contributing to higher standards of care and a more positive experience for the children.
3. Enhancing Reputation and Trust Among Parents
Parents want to entrust their children to nurseries that offer not only high-quality education but also stability and professionalism. Nurseries known as Employers of Choice often enjoy a strong reputation locally, they are recognised for their team and their ability to attract and retain their team, helping to attract more families and grow the business.
4. Driving Continuous Improvement and Innovation
Settings recognised as Employers of Choice typically have robust feedback loops and employee development programs. They prioritise continuous learning and improvement, encouraging staff to bring new ideas to the table and keep up-to-date with the latest pedagogical innovations. This proactive approach can enhance the quality of education and care provided, driving the nursery’s success.
Becoming an ‘Employer of Choice’: A Journey Worth Taking
Being an Employer of Choice isn’t just about offering competitive salaries; it’s about creating a work environment where employees feel valued, supported, where staff well being is a feeling not a basket, and where the team is inspired to do their best work. It includes offering opportunities for professional development, recognising and rewarding staff achievements, encouraging a work-life balance, and fostering open and respectful communication.
By investing in becoming an Employer of Choice, Nursery managers and Owners can build a stronger, more committed team that provides the best care and education for children. It’s not an overnight transformation, but the journey is well worth the rewards in terms of staff satisfaction, business reputation, and overall success.
Remember: happy employees lead to happy children, and happy children lead to satisfied parents and a thriving nursery. This virtuous circle starts with valuing and investing in your staff. So take the first step towards becoming an Employer of Choice today.
In August’s bundle of The GROW Programme we are focussing on Employer of Choice. To join GROW for just £47 per month and get access to this bundle and 23 others, please go to www.growprogramme.co.uk