Childcare services are a perennial solution for people looking to start a useful and reliable business. They are necessary in most areas of the country. They can operate in residential or commercial areas. They can provide employment to a variety of workers. Clients are usually not in short supply. Finally, day care centers can be started with minimal capital and licensing costs.
Despite the ease with which businesses like these can be instituted, there are requirements which must be taken care of before your service will be able to open. There will be some variation in these requirements depending upon where you live and upon your individual goals, but this is a great place to start for anyone thinking about starting a daycare service.
- Licensing. If you are serious about starting a childcare service, particularly one which is to operate out of your home, you’ll need to comply with state-wide licensing requirements. Call your state child safety board, and get a list of requirements. These will include licensing, course work, inspections, parent communications, and fire safety strategies. While this may seem daunting, states make these goals attainable for responsible childcare entrepreneurs. They understand that good childcare is a priority for people within their state, so they want to make sure it’s not too difficult for people to open these services, without making it too easy either.
- Financing. Figure out how you’re going to pay for your service to open. You may get a bank loan, invest personal capital, or borrow the money from family or friends. Whatever the case, you’ll likely spend at least $10,000 to get your business started, and it may be a good idea to request more than you think you need, so that as unexpected needs arise, you’ll be covered.
- Location. A good location may be integral to your childcare business’s success. If you are to operate this business out of your own home, then your search ends here. But if you are considering other locations, think about the center’s proximity to primary schools and residential areas where young families live. Also consider these benefits relative to monthly rent costs, of course, as well as structures inherent to the design of any building you may be considering. If there is already a lot of work done for you, you could save hundreds or thousands in startup costs having to build them yourself.
- Staff. You will want to screen and train staff so that you can hit the ground running on opening day. Accept people with excellent references and good experience, if you can get it. Always prioritize the safety and happiness of the children in your care, so be beyond thorough when evaluating employees. Different states will have different requirements for staff.
- Marketing. Find a way to market your service locally. TV, print, and strategic signage will do well. So will focused social media couponing. Simply having a Facebook presence with a recognizable logo will help your service to grow in recognition locally, and then word of mouth will start to be your friend, as you build a loyal clientele.
Software solutions like SkyChildCare can make any childcare center operate a lot more simply. Rather than appealing to any one aspect of this check list, SkyChildCare is a cloud-based solution (with accompanying mobile app) that helps child care workers in all aspects of their service, including pickup and drop off times, payment automation, employee scheduling, and more. It’s a way to check these items off your list quickly and for less money.