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  1. #1

    Parents withdraw to go to a center

    Why do parents hide the fact that they are on a center waiting list and then pretend to feel bad when they finally get a spot?

    I know they want to do whats best for their child which is totally acceptable, but why mislead providers who aim to give their very best.

    Frustrated because this was the family I liked the most but happy because I obviously wasn't what they were looking for.

  2. #2
    Shy
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    Why do they hide it? Because then they can't use us as a stopgap!
    This is one of the first questions I ask applicants, whether they are planning on going to a centre later. If they are honest with me at least I can decide whether to accept them as a temporary client.

    I used another provider's idea of having an enrollment fee instead of a deposit, and it applies to the last 2 weeks of care so long as the family has been in care for one year.

    This has worked well in stopgap families enrolling with me. However I still had a family that left after one month - gave notice after 2 weeks being with me because their waiting list spot opened up. Took it upon herself to apply the enrollment fees for her final two weeks She misunderstood my policies.

    Just as families do what's best for them, you must do what's best for YOU too. Ask those questions before deciding to enroll a family.

  3. #3
    Euphoric !
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    They hide it because they know that if we are aware they are only staying for a few short months, we will not offer them a space and will offer to someone intending to stay.

    While this has never been an issue for me because it's something I specifically ask when interviewing and I can *normally* tell if they aren't being straight, I have been affected by a similar issue of teachers saying they understand I don't follow a teachers schedule or parents in further education saying they will still need care in the Summer because they will need to work, and then pulling out their child when the school term ends. They say that they would love to return in September but that doesn't help me with the lost income for summer months.

    What I did a few years ago was to eliminate my "deposit" and have an enrollment fee instead. Then my policies state that the enrollment fee is credited to their final weeks of care if they have been here for more than a full year. That has put a stop to anyone who joins the day home, intended to come short term only because they typically try and negotiate around that policy. That's my warning that they aren't planning on staying long term and so I don't offer them a space.

  4. #4
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    Hi. To be honest I talk to my clients upfront. First my doors are open to anyone that wants and need my services (even for short term, I got the best recommendations from them especially and got good long term families through them too) I'm very honest with them and tell them that their spot will be available after they leave and if they see or know someone interested to let me know. I have a demand and waiting list I also tell them as I'm helping them out, to just let me know at least a month ahead or as soon as they figured it out. Giving me time to interview and have someone to fill the spot as soon as their spot is open (they know they can count with their spot until they have to leave no pressure)

    So far, i do not have problems filling the spots, the problems were when once I filled the spots (with contracts signed a month ahead), the leaving families change their minds (I guess they evaluate pros and cons); but I also had families that signed for short term and they stayed years (and they cancelled their daycare centre spots).

    My opinion comes to this; if I'm offering a service, I must evaluate my needs ;

    1. Stay empty keep looking around avoid families that need my services (even short term, obviously perhaps a good economic situation would allow that) or

    2. Fill my spots even with short terms and offer a "quality service" for short or long term (which actually helped building a great reputation and get more people to know me and my serviced and get positive recommendations).

    I have never made felt any family like signing here is a trap (I'm sure that's what also would lead to non being honest and sign anything in desesperation) I'm honest open and families also are. They all have rights to think and change their minds as I would too.

    So, it comes to this "my doors are open to anyone that needs my spots" as we are in a "service" industry a day empty is a day lost for ever.

    I got three long term families that started as short term (they were afraid to commit to a new situation and to someone they didn't know 100%, It took few months until they felt comfortable and secure that my services were what they were looking for).

    ***My personal advise is to keep doing what you're doing treat that family the same and let them see how good you are, I had families that once they tried the centres they regreted and wanted to come back but, their spots were filled.

    And I also was thinking on a tighter contract a enrollment fee etc. But when families decide to leave for any reason and because is their child, they do not mind losing or paying extra that won't stop them. The well being of their child is priceless..
    Last edited by Peacefulbird; 12-06-2018 at 06:36 AM.

  5. #5
    Euphoric !
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peacefulbird View Post
    First my doors are open to anyone that wants and need my services (even for short term, I got the best recommendations from them especially and got good long term families through them too).....

    I have never made felt any family like signing here is a trap (I'm sure that's what also would lead to non being honest and sign anything in desesperation) I'm honest open and families also are. They all have rights to think and change their minds as I would too.

    So, it comes to this "my doors are open to anyone that needs my spots".
    While it's nice that this works for you, I can see for a lot of provider's it wouldn't - me included.

    One of the key aspects of having a successful business, is the determination of our boundaries - i.e. what's acceptable to us and what isn't. Some of that will be personal, some of that will be based on our provincial regulations and some of that will be based on our client's needs.

    For me personally, one of the strongest elements which brings client's to me, is stability. I intentionally don't accept part time children or short term children because initial phase-in's affect not only myself and the new child but the entire client base. It takes time for a new child to settle, and it's not unusual that during that time, the new child has a little more attention to ensure they are settling well into the group. Taking short term client's might well help personal finances but it's a constant state of change for loyal long term clients. I know for me, if I had an endless door of short term placements, and constant change in the day home, I feel that's unfair to those who have been with me long term.

    I have only once taken a short term client intentionally. An existing client who was on mat leave with their second child, and who had kept their older child in care in order to keep her space, decided they were going to pay for a second space when it became available - a full 8 months before they needed it. They knew that this is a low turnover day home and that the odds of another space were slim as I had no one aging out that particular year. In order to relieve the financial strain on that family paying for two full time spaces when on mat leave, I offered to seek a short term client with the aim of any days that client signed up for would not be charged to the existing family. But that was exceptional circumstances and done not for my benefit (since I was being paid regardless of whether I phased in a new client or not) but for the benefit of the client - with the agreement of the entire client base.

    My opinion is in direct conflict to yours - That the security of keeping loyal clients who have been here long term, by providing a stable day home vs one in constant change, is more important that the short term financial gain for me that a short term client brings.

    My door is NEVER open to anyone who needs my spots. I am not interested on "bums in seats" resulting in high turnover. I am very particular with who I take and I have never offered a space to someone based on them wanting to come here. I vet my clients and I choose my clients based on what is in the best interest of myself and the client's I already have because in my market, that has proven to be the best way of having a low turnover day home and stability for all. I eliminate potential clients based on the boundaries I have determined to be the right ones for both my business and my family.

  6. #6
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    My opinion is in direct conflict to yours - That the security of keeping loyal clients who have been here long term, by providing a stable day home vs one in constant change, is more important that the short term financial gain for me that a short term client brings.*

    My door is NEVER open to anyone who needs my spots. I am not interested on "bums in seats" resulting in high turnover. I am very particular with who I take and I have never offered a space to someone based on them wanting to come here. I vet my clients and I choose my clients based on what is in the best interest of myself and the client's I already have because in my market, that has proven to be the best way of having a low turnover day home and stability for all. I eliminate potential clients based on the boundaries I have determined to be the right ones for both my business and my family.
    Good for you Suzie_Homemaker, I'm sure your method works too. Absolutely agree you have created your own boundaries for you and your business. Because that's what works best for you.

    Sharing my personal experience I must say I haven't had turnover it actually created a long waiting list of long term clients because many people got to know my services. It helped creating a good reputation over the years.

    I'm sure your demand market is slightly different than mine. I cannot longer see or call "long term clients" many of them stay only for two years and a half or so (then their child goes to school in Ontario); and I have parents who have the second child and stay but i noticed that is also changing many just have one and they're done.

    My group have experienced first hand the exposure of their children learning to accept, tolerance, patience, the children I care for are very social and also resilient to overcome changes. Parents know that here or in school sooner or later they will experience change, I help them raising a child who accepts changes in a more positive manner, they know that even with changes it is all ok and they are fine, accepting that changes are part of our lives. I do not create closed.circles because a city life is more dinamic.

    Young generation of parents are obviously open minded (they have their child enrolled in different activities too and not just daycare). I have really good report from parents and teachers on how well socialized those kids are. They are patient able to help and support if someone is in need (I guess they have learned that through role modeling, helping others and making them feel better) when a short period client comes by they usually become long term clients or leave with a positive experience which resulted in great recommendations.

    So, in general Suzie_Homemaker, as I mencioned before and in many of my posts, I work with the children and not only what is in my best interest, I evaluate pros and cons constantly and what life learning experience my group will have. Which I think it is much greater than any finantial gain.

    But also as I see some caregivers read our posts, I share with honesty of what I do or works best for me, by giving other options or look things differently is what drives me to write these posts. We have the social responsibility of guiding or giving advise or just listen or support to who ever needs it.

    Your method works and mine also works both successfully, we shared our experiences now it is up to each person to take or guide themselves through our advices or not, or also come up with a better ideas or results. That way we all support each other and grow together.

  7. #7
    Euphoric !
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    I can see you do that but many of your posts, intentional or not are patronizing for those who do things differently to you. While you make the noises that you can see different ways are effective, your tone suggests less inferior and I'm not okay with that.

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