Nursery Manager Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

A Nursery Manager, or Pre-School Manager oversees the operations of early years childcare centres. Their primary duties include recruiting and training staff, promoting the childcare centre and managing its finances.

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Nursery Manager duties and responsibilities

The duties of Nursery Managers vary depending on the size of their childcare centres and the age of the children in their care. However, their common responsibilities include:

  • Recruiting employees and providing ongoing training in best care practices
  • Developing and maintaining the nursery budget
  • Arranging marketing materials
  • Monitoring the condition of the facility and equipment and organising maintenance, repairs and new items as required
  • Updating parents and Carers about their child’s progress and behaviour
  • Answering enquiries about enrolment, payments and practices
  • Developing and implementing an age-appropriate program of annual events and activities
  • Preparing the nursery for Ofsted inspections and following inspector recommendations

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What does a Nursery Manager do?

Nursery Managers ensure babies and young children have a safe and engaging place to spend their days. They work closely with Nursery Teachers to make sure they deliver the best care and report the progress of children to parents. They also take care of administrative duties to ensure their childcare centres operate efficiently, on budget and within health and safety regulations. Their marketing efforts help their childcare centres attract new children and maintain positive reputations in their communities.

Nursery Manager skills and qualifications

Nursery Managers use soft skills and hard skills to manage their facilities effectively. A successful Nursery Manager candidate will have various prerequisite skills and qualifications that Childcare centres and preschools need, these typically include:

  • Understanding of the Early Years Foundation Stage’s welfare, learning and development requirements
  • Understanding of child safety practices including paediatric first aid, safeguarding children and food hygiene
  • Leadership, including organisation, the ability to motivate others and effective decision-making
  • Written and verbal communication and interpersonal skills for building relationships with staff, parents and Caregivers
  • Marketing for devising effective promotional strategies
  • Financial management, including budgeting and accounting
  • Business management, including employee recruitment, developing and implementing training programmes and running meetings
  • Computer literacy, including confidence using Microsoft Office and record-keeping software

Nursery Manager experience requirements

Nursery Managers usually have at least two years of experience as a Nursery Worker before applying for managerial roles. This experience helps aspiring Nursery Managers understand what children and Nursery Teachers need. They may also work as a Deputy Nursery Manager before becoming a Nursery Manager. While Deputy Nursery Manager experience is not required, candidates with this experience should be very familiar with the tasks Nursery Managers perform.

Nursery Manager education and training requirements

Many Nursery Managers have a degree or foundation degree in child development, early years education or childhood studies. Degrees in child psychology may also prepare candidates for a Nursery Manager position. Alternatively, some people complete advanced early years practitioner apprenticeships to secure their first Nursery Worker roles. Some nurseries require candidates with Early Years Teacher Status. A Level 3 NVQ in Children and Young People’s Workforce, Childcare and Education or similar is another common requirement.

Nursery Manager salary expectations

According to Indeed Salaries, the average salary for a Nursery Manager in the UK is £25,251 per year. Salaries may vary depending on the Nursery Manager’s education, location and employer.

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Nursery Manager job description FAQs

Who reports to Nursery Managers?

Nursery Teachers report to Nursery Managers. These are the childcare centre employees who supervise babies and children daily. They keep the Nursery Manager informed of the progress of children in their care and consult them when they have concerns, such as conflicts with parents or requests for new equipment.

How can I feel confident my Nursery Manager is of good character?

Most childcare centre job descriptions state candidates must pass enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service checks to secure work. These enhanced checks reveal whether shortlisted candidates have any criminal convictions, whether they served time for them and whether they were ever reprimanded or cautioned by the Police. They also show any other relevant details the Police have on file about your candidates. All this information can help you make informed choices about your Nursery Manager’s character and whether they should be around children.

What qualities do successful Nursery Managers have?

Successful Nursery Managers are warm, personable people with sharp business minds. They know how to work well under pressure and stay organised, even when they face challenges. However, they are also sensitive and understanding of the challenges that Nursery Workers and parents face. They are self-motivated individuals who can happily work on their own when developing budgets and facility plans. However, they also enjoy being with others, whether they’re liaising with employees or chatting to the parents that use their centres.

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