Availability of childcare services have greatly helps ease parental burden of juggling between family provision and child upkeep. Child care is a wide topic that includes a wide field of experts, organizations, and activities.
The number of working parents keeps rising creating an ever-growing need for excellence in childcare services, consequently leading to entrepreneurial opportunity for child care businesses.
In many instances child care is a combined effort of both parents, extended family, legal guardians, siblings, as well as teachers. Another form of childcare is delegating responsibility to a paid caregiver, orphanage or foster care to provide basic needs such as housing, food and education.
Child-care services range from home based care to large commercial operation centres, and can start with a very minimal investment. Hence, you contemplate venturing into childcare as a business, finances need not be a stumbling block. You can commence by creating employment for yourself and expand exponentially to a substantial enterprise.
Financing a startup comes with many challenges and unforeseen emergencies. However to mitigate these challenges you must first have a vision and identify factors to consider as listed here.
Category of services
For better success, be flexible with the services you intend to offer. You may limit clientele to children of a specific age group, or structure operating hours to target a particular market. Offering transportation services is an added advantage and can help you attract many customers.
Hours of operation
Parents need to get to work on time and hence, a childcare centre should be open very early as well as very late to accommodate parents who work evenings.
Meals and snack
You may need to factor in whether meals and snacks will be part of the package. Will you provide meals or will parents and guardians pack for them. If you intend to offer this service, deliberate if you will do the cooking yourself or if you will outsource, noting the extra expense you may have to incur.
Additionally, children come with a myriad of allergies and intolerances to certain foods. To meet this need, you may be forced to have a wide variety on the menu to comfortably accommodate all children. Ensuring the meals are well balanced is another factor to consider.
Will you offer low-fat snacks with minimal amounts of sugar and whole grain products instead of processed food? Will you be able to incorporate fresh fruits in the menu and parents will be keen to know how you cook the food.
These factors could are many for a startup to digest and therefore it would be better for you to advice parents on the appropriate snacks and meals that you recommend for children.
Ratio of children to staff members
The ratio of staff members should not be overlooked. You must have enough employees if you intend to take on many children. When a caregiver is responsible for fewer children, the more individual attention that child will get minimizing accidents.
Parents will be more confident entrusting their children to you if you have received appropriate training. A well-educated and experienced staff will provide meaningful interactions and activities for the children.
Licensing, credentials and accreditation
Before a parents releases their precious child to you, they may want to know how you screen and verify staff, to ensure that they are competent enough and not psychos who may harm their children.
Your local government has rules and regulations that govern your Day Care Centre. You will want to avoid running into trouble by strictly complying with every requirement. Start by studying about child care licensing guidelines for children and daycare providers, and then research on your specific state and city. Have extensive knowledge on daycare licensing requirements.
Are you starting a daycare from your home, looking to rent an existing child care centre, or starting from scratch from a new facility? In any case, you will require to identify a home for your venture, taking a keen interest on city’s zoning laws and child licensing guidelines when making this choice to be sure your location conforms.
Convenient payment options
What kind of payment options will you avail? Make payment flexible with options that favour your clients. Will you accept credit card and debit card payment option, and does it offer automatic charging of cards and bank accounts? These are financial aspects you should consider.
Opt to offer discounts to loyal customers who make prompt monthly payments.
How do you intend to prepare children for schooling? Will your staff double up as teachers and will they prepare lesson plans for the class? What is the reasoning behind your choice of curriculum and how is it beneficial to the children? Make comparisons and settle on one that would be appropriate in establishing a lifetime foundation and create enthusiasm for learning.
Caring for one child can drive you crazy, hence you need to have a special calling and serious commitment to care for a group of toddlers. Children are prone to get in to mischief at every opportunity and therefore while under your care, you have to dedicate all your time watching them keenly to ensure their safety.
Your contribution in their lives will be more impactful if you are passionate and have genuine love for them which will be vital in their overall development.
With the challenges of financing a startup you need to identify where funding for your venture will come from. If you intent to taka a loan, make sure to have a concrete plan of how each coin will be spent and how you will service it. It is a dreadful experience to pay for a loan that was not spent wisely.
Alternatively starting small is advantageous as you may not require a huge amount of money and your savings will be sufficient.
Congratulations on making the choice to start your own business. Whether you are a parent who sees a need or a nanny with a dream, starting a daycare is not a walk in the park. If you intent to run a professional childcare centre, you need professional advice, a clear vision and childcare software to help you strategize and streamline operations.
Your triumph in opening a child care centre will depend on proper management of the startup process from beginning to end.