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Tips for Success During the Trial Phase

You’ve had a successful interview (or several) and now you have arranged a trial in a client’s home. That’s great news but the job is not yet secured –  a trial is your opportunity to show off your skills, learn more about the job, and find out if its a good fit for both employer and employee. This week, we’ve compiled our top tips for a successful trial. Remember, our recruiters are always here to help if you have questions or need advice before a trial.

What is a Trial?

trial is a short (usually 1-3 days) time period where a candidate works in the family’s home and, ideally, mimics regular work days. This is the chance for the candidate, the client, the other staff, and any children to see how they work together and if it is a good fit.

Our Top Trial Tips 

Dress for Success.

trial is different than an interview in that you will be on your feet doing work most of the day. Dress professionally and dress appropriately for the work at hand. The goal is to be polished and practical. Until you better know the family’s preferences, it is best to avoid perfumes and scented products, and to keep makeup, hair, and nails simple.

Be Prepared and On Time.

It is critical that you are not late to a trial. While we all understand life happens, a trial is your chance to give a client a glimpse into what working with you will be like. If you are late at this stage, many clients will assume you are unreliable and consistently late, even if that is not the case. Most clients are very busy and many won’t even meet with a candidate who arrives late. First impressions are extremely important. We recommend planning your route ahead of time, allowing extra time for unexpected delays, and even doing a test-run of the trip if the address seems tricky to locate. Depending on the hours of the trial, it is best to come ready with a simple lunch, snacks, and water for yourself. The client may provide food but if it isn’t explicitly discussed ahead of time, it is better to be prepared than sorry.

Put Your Best Foot Forward.

Ask the recruiter ahead of time if there are any specific requests or information you should know. Get a good night’s sleep the night before. Brainstorm questions you might have for the principal. Think about things you learned in the previous client interviews that may help you succeed at this stage in the process.

trial is a careful balance of following a client’s lead and being proactive and showing your experience and how you can excel in the role. Err on the side of proactivity and try to anticipate needs without overstepping. Make sure to be respectful of other staff and remember that your behavior with every person in the home matters. Silence and stay off your phone (except in the case of emergencies) and be present in all your interactions.

Ask Questions.

trial is for the benefit of both the client and the candidate so make sure you ask questions about the role and expectations. The goal is to find out if it is the right fit on both sides. Asking appropriate questions also indicates to the client that you are engaged and serious about the role.

Be Yourself.

The best advice is to be your best authentic and professional self. A job will not be sustainable if you’ve behaved differently in the trial than you would in real day-to-day life. You are likely to be happier in a position long-term and find a better fit if you present your real self during the trial.

Follow Up.

Consider drafting up a simple Thank You card beforehand thanking the family for their time and consideration of you for this role. Put in an envelope and leave with the principal or your main contact in the home upon leaving. You could also follow up with a simple text or email t hanking them for their time; you can also send this to the recruiter in charge and ask them to forward it to the client. If you aren’t sure what kind of communication is appropriate, feel free to ask the recruiter who is working with you on the role for advice.

If after the trial, you don’t feel the role is for you, it is best to communicate this directly with the recruiter who sent you and let them speak to the client about it. It’s best to be honest and direct with recruiters so they can best assist you in your job search.

More Resources 

Blog Posts

Common Interview Questions

Top Tips for Preparing For An Interview

What Should Be Included in my Contract? 

Commons Reasons Candidates Are Not Selected 

Top Tips To Optimize Your Online Presence for Future Employers

Resume Guidelines

Nanny Resume Guidelines 

Housekeeper Resume Guidelines

General Resume Guidelines

Sample Resumes 

Sample Nanny Resume

Sample Housekeeper Resume

Sample Newborn Care Specialist Resume

Sample Estate Manager Resume

For those interested in applying, you can sort through our job board by keyword, category, position type and/or location. Select the job you’re interested in and apply through that page. Note: Your resume will still be considered for other positions that we have. Contact us if you have any questions.