How to Start Your Own Child Care Agency

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child care agency

Starting a child care agency is a great way for ambitious entrepreneurs to really make a difference to children in their local community. Here, we list our top tips for starting a business in the child care sector and why we believe it’s well worth it.

In the UK, the child care agency sector has shown impressive strength over time. In fact, it’s grown year on year and even showed resilience to the financial crash in 2008. What’s more, experts predict the overall market size will increase rapidly in the coming years, due to the inevitability of further government intervention and funding.

On average, parents pay £122 per week for 25 hours of nursery childcare. That equates to £6,300 a year; a chunky investment for those who need others to look after their child during the day. In London, costs are even higher, increasing by up to 70 percent more than in Yorkshire and Humber (Christie). This is a sector with significant income potential for those with ambition to launch their own business.

Why start a child care agency?

  • It’s rewarding – By connecting child care providers with parents and guardians, you’ll help children access fantastic learning and development opportunities, and support parents to work longer hours.
  • You’ll be joining a recession-proof sector – In fact, as more mothers return to the workplace, we’re likely to see a continued increase in demand for child care.
  • You can meet lots of new people – By finding and signing up child care providers to your agency, you’ll get the chance to meet with and talk to new people all the time. This should mean your job is never dull, particularly if your prospective workers are engaging, friendly and fun.

How to start a child care agency

It can be hard to know where to start when it comes to launching a child care agency business. Here are our top tips to get you started:

  1. Make your brand unique – Any business needs to stand out from its competitors if it’s to succeed. Give clients a reason to choose you instead of another local agency.
  2. Create an online presence - Developing a business website and incorporating social media into your marketing strategy is a great way to tell customers about your offering and attract new ones.
  3. Keep an eye out – It’s worth being proactive and looking out for new families entering your local area, as they’ll be potential clients.
  4. Network as much as possible – Take the opportunity to attend local events, whether they’re business-related or not. By mingling with other entrepreneurs and families alike, you can make sure you keep on top of developing trends and boost your client pool.
  5. Develop an efficient screening strategy – One of the most important jobs you’ll do is make sure your child care providers are safe. Making one small slip-up could signal the end for your business, so take the time to develop a robust screening process. This step will help you maximise efficiency and minimise the chance of errors.
  6. Conduct interviews in person or via video conference – Talking on the phone can only take you so far. Meeting face to face or via video call will help you get a better sense of the people you’re recruiting to represent your brand.
  7. Save costs by working remotely – Child care agencies don’t necessarily require a ‘brick and mortar’ premises. If you have a laptop, internet connection and a mobile, you can run your business from the comfort of your own home.

Child care agency franchises in the UK

If you want to run a child care agency, you don’t necessarily have to launch a business from scratch. Opting to join a franchise could be a fast-track ticket to profitability, giving you the chance to work under an established brand with an existing reputation.


Tinies is the leading child care and nanny agency network in the UK, with over 50,000 people in its pool of child care providers. For over 40 years now, the family-owned company has been looking after parents and their children from agencies dotted all over the UK. The successful brand has also created and managed numerous child care settings, including kids’ clubs and nurseries.

  • Becoming a Tinies franchisee: You’ll recruit and screen all types of child care providers, including babysitters, nannies and maternity nurses.
  • How much you’ll need to invest: Tinies doesn’t say how much you would need to invest in a new franchise branch, but you can contact the brand to find out. Alternatively, the franchise does have several existing units available for resale. You can expect to pay between £10,000 and £100,000 when taking on a Tinies business.
  • What you get for your investment: When you first join, you’ll get the chance to take part in a two-week training scheme learning the Tinies system. You can also rely on support through regular site visits, conferences, newsletters and telephone chats.


Smileys is an established child care agency specialising in the recruitment of nannies, maternity nurses and babysitters for over 30 years. It covers much of the South of England, including Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Surrey. Smileys’ main priority is matching the right child carer to the family, to suit practical and personal needs.

  • Becoming a Smileys franchisee: If you have child care or recruitment experience, ambition and the ability to work around 40 hours from home, Smileys wants to hear from you.
  • How much you need to invest: Smileys hasn’t disclosed its investment requirement figures, but you can find out more by getting in touch with the business directly.
  • What you get for your investment: Franchisees get comprehensive training and support in setting up their franchise unit.

Opportunities with Point Franchise

One of the most exciting child care franchises in our UK franchise directory is Banana Moon. We also offer a range of child activity franchises including Premier, Puddle Ducks, Mother Nature Science, Gymboree and Tatty Bumpkin.

See all our child care franchise opportunities to find the perfect business for you.

>> Read more articles on the Child Care sector

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