A Czech startup is matching foreigners with nannies, housekeepers, and pet sitters

Hlídačky.cz helps non-native speakers find care providers safely and easily on one user-friendly platform.

Diana Bocco

Written by Diana Bocco Published on 22.11.2021 17:00 (updated on 22.11.2021) Reading time: 3 minutes

Online platform Hlídačky.cz was born in Brno eight years ago as a place to help people connect with care providers. What first started as a place for busy families to find a babysitter or housekeeping services has since then grown to also offer pet-sitting, dog-walking services, and even elderly care.

“It was all based on strong demand and feedback directly from the families,” says Hlídačky.cz co-founder Petr Šigut. “They want to find care for the family and household on one platform they can trust. So for us it has been a natural progress to add these services.”

The beauty of Hlídačky is in its intimacy. Rather than calling an agency to find a babysitter or ask neighbors or friends for a recommendation, Hlídačky allows you to take things into your own hands. On its online platform, families can place a free advertisement for the services they are interested in. Or, after paying for a membership, families can search the platform for profiles of interested providers and message them directly.

Šigut believes that because Hlídačky.cz is not an agency (where you don’t have a say in the first steps of the process and the babysitter or cleaning service is chosen for you) users have better control over the process.

“For us, outsourcing help for your home is a very intimate thing,” he says. “That's why we want everyone to find and choose the perfect fit for their needs, home, or kids themselves. So on Hlídačky.cz the families can communicate directly with caregivers and select which one matches their needs the best.”

Today, Hlídačky’s platform of babysitters counts over 10,000 active nannies throughout the Czech Republic. According to Petr Šigut, this is the most sought-after service by expats, followed by home cleaning.

“We know that parenting is hard and every bit of help you can get is priceless,” says Šigut. “Usually that's when our families need the help the most. Not many expats living in foreign countries have their families with them, so when they need help, they can turn to Hlídačky.cz.” 

For non-Czech speakers, there's also the convenience of having access to a platform that's fully in English and where it's possible to see what languages are spoken by anybody they're considering hiring.

As safety is always a top priority for families, the platform also provides numerous ways for caregivers to “verify themselves” through verification centers, video interviews, and third-party services.

Although the verification is not mandatory, Šigut says families concerned about safety can recognize the verification level of a caregiver by the badges under his or her name.

“We have our own verification centers in Prague, Brno, and Bratislava where things like criminal record and certifications are checked and recently we've also added a video verification option because of Covid,” Šigut explains. “Plus, all bookings are automatically insured.”

Insurance is another unique feature of Hlídačky. Petsitters are automatically insured by up to CZK 25,000 per pet to cover veterinarian care in case of injury, while babysitters are insured by up to CZK 1 million to cover common injuries that may occur during babysitting. Even cleaners are insured to cover common damage that may occur during cleaning, such as dropping a vase or staining a rug. 

Other things, such as verification or vaccination certificates (over 3,000 people have added to their profiles that they can provide Covid vaccination proof when hired) were created to make the process of finding the right fit as smooth as possible.

“At the end of the day, you're about to invite this person to your home or entrust your child or pet to them, so verification is very important for us,” says Šigut, who adds they always encourage communication so there are no misunderstandings.

“A great way to start is to meet up first and slowly get to know each other, especially if it's a babysitting position.”

This article was written in cooperation with Hlídačky.cz. Read about our partner content policy here.

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