View Full Version : Childcare.co.uk for those that aren't sure

15-07-2014, 02:56 PM
I joined childcare.co.uk not long after I first registered.
I got my first proper mindee from there, so it paid for itself within the first month of care.
I was fortunate enough to win a year free thanks to a competition run on this forum, just before I was due to renew, so was chuffed to bits.

This time of year is always a sad time, and I'm due to say goodbye to 2 next week, as they embark on the next journey of their little lives, 'big school'
I'd updated my profile with FIS, and childcare.co.uk, and have had a few 'airy fairy' enquiries - you know the ones....
We're having a big drop in income this year, and I was getting a little concerned about the quality of enquiries.

Well, last week, I messaged a parent, she wasn't entirely sure she was doing the right thing, choosing a minder over a nursery, first time leaving them, daunted by the whole process, and of returning to work after a number of years.
We messaged a few times, I didn't do the hard sell, I never do, guided her to FIS, as there are more minders there than online, ask around at who her friends recommend, etc.
Anyhow, we arranged a visit eventually, and she had a few others to go see too, and the upshot is...

She's coming to me! Yaaay!
Signing contracts tomorrow, and starting in August, 2 little ones. I'm so happy.

So for anyone wondering if being gold makes a difference, for me it makes a huge difference.
No, I don't always get enquiries, sometimes the enquiries I get aren't seriously looking, some never respond to a message, some never even read a message, but that's the same with all forms of advertising, I've had some very dodgy FIS enquiries too.

One client more than covers the annual fee - and you should be looking at the long term (IMO)

15-07-2014, 03:17 PM
I agree I have always been a Gold member and 2 of the children I currently have have come from me messaging them about their requirements. 1 works in completely the opposite direction to where I live and doesn't live near me. It is definitely worth paying for the Gold membership IMO. I don't think I have ever had any children come to me via FIS.


15-07-2014, 04:55 PM
I agree. Our FIS is quite complicated, I often struggle to find myself on there. If I was a parent, I think I would easily give up.

On the other hand Childcare.co.uk is easy to navigate by parents who know their own postcode!

Thinking about what I get out of it..... A place to advertise my vacancies, a place to access training ( free training -bonus!) , a 'sister site' that is a forum to discuss childminding stuff, a service that is not too expensive and I can record against my tax.

This sounds a bit like the services I would like out of an agency!!!

15-07-2014, 05:10 PM
The free online training is a big draw as well. While waiting for the right parent to come along you can be updating your CPD. There are also over 100 guides mostly written by our very own Sarah Neville.

15-07-2014, 05:15 PM
I'm a gold member and love the training and have found all my parents on there :-) big thumbs up from me :-)

15-07-2014, 05:31 PM
I have only been minding since April and I have 4 families that signed up from there, certainly worth the money :-)

15-07-2014, 10:57 PM
Thanks for all the nice comments.

It's very rewarding to hear that so many of you have had great success with our website.

16-07-2014, 08:12 AM
I have got all my parents from childcare.co.uk. It has paid for itself time and time again.

Like others have said easy to navigate I also like the craft mag and the online training.

Also like the advice for writing documents.

17-07-2014, 07:58 AM
I have to agree with Kiddlywinks. :thumbsup:

My only complaint with the site is that I get more enquiries than I can handle, and I end up feeling bad whenever I turn a family down.

Whilst parents will be parents, I do somehow get a far smaller proportion of nut-jobs contacting me through the site that I get from FIS and other means. I can only assume that Richard has installed some sort of sophisticated 'idiot-filtering' software. :D

17-07-2014, 11:39 AM
I have had Gold Membership for 3 years now I think it is. I currently have 4 out of the 5 children on my books who have found me through the site. So well worth the annual fee and I have no intention of cancelling anytime soon. :D

17-07-2014, 11:47 AM
I haven't had any parents from the site, a few enquiries but none that have led to any work. I do however appreciate the free training courses as I find it very difficult to get to any other kind of training courses :)