Family Interview Guide

Before the Interview
Structuring the Interview 
Sample Interview Questions 
Interview Summary & Evaluation Check List 
Check List 
Overall Assessment

The interview is a two way process where you and the prospective Au pair can exchange information and most importantly, find out if you get along and whether you could work together. Your first impressions are very important so don’t ignore your instincts towards the prospective Au pair.

Before the Interview

There are a number of things you will have to think about before you start interviewing. These will include:

  • Deciding on questions to ask and the qualities you are looking for.
  • The hours the Au pair will be required to work
  • The duties the Au pair will be expected to do.
  • The salary and holiday entitlements you are offering.
  • Additional benefits, such as use of car.
  • House rules such as use of telephone, visiting friends and boyfriends, meals and eating arrangements.

Structuring the Interview

A structured interview allows all points to be covered with each applicant, so you should have at least a rough agenda in mind, before starting the interview. This should include the following:

  • Explaining the job on offer, including hours, duties, rules and expectations.
  • Explaining your routine, what times you are out of the house etc. and also the children’s routine, their school times and/or classes they attend.
  • Find out about the carer’s views on child care.
  • Allow an opportunity for the carer to ask questions.

Sample Interview Questions

Listed below are some questions that could be included in an interview. These are provided as a guideline only. The questions should be open ended to allow the Au pair to discuss and provide an explanation. Try to avoid questions, which result in a yes or no answer, also avoid starting a question with “Don’t you think that…” as this normally means “I think….” and loads the question. If you are interviewing a lot of applicants it is best to make notes as you go along so you don’t forget who said what.

  1. Please find here some questions you may find useful to ask at the time of the interview

    ·         Why do you want to come to Australia as au pair?

    ·         How would you describe your Personality?

    ·         How would you characterize your strengths?

    ·         How would your characterize your weaknesses?

    ·         What kind of children do you find it most difficult to work with?  Why?

    ·         What types of things frustrate or upset you the most?

    ·         How do you resolve conflict?

    ·         In your previous experience with children What were some of the difficult challenges that you had to over come?

    ·         Tell me a little about what it is like to live with you?

    ·         How many children are you capable of caring for at the same time?

    ·         In your opinion what qualities make a good au pair?

    ·         What activities do you like doing with children? (Is she/he creative and/or resourceful?

    ·         An example of the routine on a wet day?

    ·         Do you enjoy cooking? What are your views on nutrition?

    ·         How would you discipline poor behaviour?

    ·         Give an example of an emergency situation and ask how the she would respond.

    ·         Are you willing to work additional hours, baby-sitting evenings and weekends?

What is her current time?

If you need assistance to know exactly what time is now in her country you can visit this page:


Interview Summary & Evaluation Check List

There is clearly a lot to remember when you interview prospective applicants for the position. Many people will wish to take notes during the interview or make brief notes immediately after, other people will just go with their natural instincts and recruit the person they felt most comfortable with. Whatever method you choose has to suit you, the main importance is to be consistent in you assessment of each applicant. You may want to create a brief assessment check list which you can tick off during or after the interview. The following check list may help you ensure each candidate is being assessed consistently.

Check List

  • Discuss responsibilities
  • Discuss house rules
  • Discuss the salary and benefits
  • Discuss Start Date

Overall Assessment

  • Assess their key strengths and areas requiring improvement.
  • Write a few summary comments about the interview

Once you have found a suitable Au pair, you should offer them the position as soon as possible since they may be attending other interviews.