As the holidays approach and 2016 comes to a close, you may be considering what to give your nanny or housekeeper for all of their hard work with your family this past year. If you don't know quite where to start, here are a few of our most commonly asked questions about year-end bonuses and holiday gifts to help guide you in your expressions.
First, is this expression expected?
In short, yes. Forgoing this expression of gratitude at the end of the year is similar to eating at a fancy restaurant and not leaving a tip. We highly recommend it for our clients who employ someone regularly, even if it's just a one-a-week position.
What is a typical year end gift?
It is standard to give a monetary gift, but many families also add in a small, thoughtful trinket, particularly if the relationship is more friendly and personal. For instance, if you know your employee's personal style and want to get them a special item. Even a gift certificate from a spa is a nice way to say, "De-stress, on us!" Having the children make something is also appreciated and involves them in the importance of expressing their gratitude.
What is an adequate amount?
Again, every family is different so it really depends on the type of position your employee has, and how much you have allocated in your holiday gift-giving budget. Typical bonus would be equal to one week of pay if they have worked for you for at least one year. If you are able to be extremely generous, some families either do one of two things: one week of pay per year they have worked (ex: $700/wk x 2 years, $1,400 bonus), or you can think in percentages of 5-10% of yearly salary ($30,000 a year, $150-300 bonus; $70k - $3,500-7,000 bonus).
Remember that different positions call for different amounts. For instance, a mother/parent's helper's bonus would not be the same as a governess who teaches lessons at home and tracks a child's developmental progress. The same sentiment applies toward a full-time housekeeper and manager position when compared to a bi-weekly housekeeper.
What is the best way to express our gratitude?
The bottom line is that while it isn't important (nor likely expected) to give a large sum of money, it is important to show your gratitude in a generous way. Only you will know what this looks like. Go beyond what you normally do to say thank you. This person cares for you and your family deeply, and they want to know they matter in the peaceful, happy functioning of your home. Rewarding them for a job well done will only built their relationship to you and the position in general!
All the best in the New Year!
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