Sittercity gives parents another resource to locate reliable baby sitters in their local area. Not every parent has a friend or relative who can watch their child for them while they work or enjoy a night on the town. Sittercity allows parents to seek out babysitters that meet their specifications. The process works much like general job hunting websites. The parent (who in this case is essentially the employer) can review available care givers near them. They can post a job to Sittercity. Interested care givers can submit an application to the parent who selects applicants to review. Sittercity provides parents with a suggested four step review process, references for the applicant and background checks so they can feel confident about whom they choose to hire. Once the parent has selected their child’s new care giver, they can discuss the terms of employment and get things started.Show more screenshots »
Sittercity was founded in Chicago by CEO Genevieve Thiers. Today the team has grown to include Lee Hower, Matthew Williams and Ben Schmitz. The site was originally intended to help parents connect with potential care givers for their children. The site’s scope expanded to help parents find reliable tutors for their children while family members can locate care givers for pets and senior citizens. In April 2011, Sittercity raised $22.6 million brining its total funding to $30 million.
There are many job hunting websites, but Sittercity focuses on care giving rather than general jobs. The site guides parents, guardians and family members through the screening process so they find a care giver they can trust. Sittercity does not make the decision for parents, but gives them all the tools they need to make a good choice.
The Sittercity website can easily be classified as friendly. The blue and orange color scheme is highlighted by a smiling parent and child and the warm Sittercity logo. Newcomers are greeted by a very organized lay out that nurtures fast navigation. Tabs at the top of the homepage help users find each tool available through Sittercity. Users can search for babysitters or nannies by zip code. The care giver profiles are very comprehensive, highlighting key items at the top along with a small photo of the care giver.
New users can join Sittercity by clicking one of the “Parents Get Started” or “Sitters Join Now” buttons at the upper, right hand corner of the page. For parents, the registration form asks them to select their desired plan and provide a first and last name, zip code, email address, username, password and how they heard about the website. Care givers are asked to provide a first and last name, street address, city, state, zip code, date of birth (applicant must be at least 18 years of age), gender, username, password, email address, phone number and email settings. The care giver must also agree to the Sittercity pledge before they are accepted.
The cost of Sittercity depends on what type of account the user is creating. Care givers are invited to join Sittercity for free. There are no subscription fees to offer services through the website. Parents on the other hand are required to pay a subscription fee to browse Sittercity and utilize its features. The site offers two subscription payment plan options. Each includes all current features offered on Sittercity. The first option is to pay for one month of unlimited access which costs $35. The second option is an annual plan that costs $70. Parents can also try a free seven day trial that allows them to post a job to see how many applicants respond to it. After seven days, the user must select one of the three payment plans to continue using Sittercity.
Sittercity is an excellent resource for parents and guardians in need of a care giver for their children. The site also caters to those searching for a pet sitter or care giver for an elderly individual. It’s very easy to use and provides a number of screening features, which help justify the subscription fees.