There is this dilemma among working parents: ‘Who is going to look after the child(ren)?’

This is a problem Kiddocare hopes to solve as it is Malaysia’s first babysitting platform that helps parents to connect with reliable babysitters to care for their children.

According to co-founder of Kiddocare Muhaini Mahmud, the idea to create the app came after becoming a mother herself: “I realised it’s very tough for working mother to work, at the same time trying to find someone to care for your child.

“So Nadira Yusof (co-founder) and I, we met and we thought it would be perfect to help working parents,” says Muhaini.

Overcoming the scepticism of hiring babysitters through an app - Co-founder of Kiddocare

Currently, Kiddocare offers two ways of booking a babysitter; from the mobile app and from the website. “The process is simple, just fill in your particulars, the date and time of booking. Details on your child, number of child and medical condition, things like that.

“We need these details because some babysitters are good with toddlers and some are good with infants and some are good with young children below the age of 12. So if a job comes in, we match to meet the requirement of the parents.

“We are the Grab or Uber for babysitters. And we are very strict when we hire our babysitters and list them onto our platform”

“Our baby sitters can go to any location of your choice. We have parents requesting to babysit in shopping malls and gym centres while they do their shopping and workout, some parents need our babysitters to care for their child at their office. We will go there,” she adds.

The idea to hire a person through an app to take care and babysit our young children, however, might leave some of us raising an eyebrow with pressing questions: ‘Who are these people? Is it safe? How can I leave my child with a complete stranger?’.

Muhaini answers with confidence: “We are the Grab or Uber for babysitters. And we are very strict when we hire our babysitters and list them onto our platform”

“We don’t just hire anyone to be listed as a babysitter on our platform. We only employ Malaysian women- some are college students, some are kindergarten teachers and some are retirees. Right now, in our system, the youngest is 19-years old and the oldest is 56-years old.

“When someone registers to be a babysitter, there are a few things they need to go through and pass. Firstly, we do security vetting- we work with ‘Polis Diraja Malaysia (PDRM)’ on this.

“After that, they need to pass a medical test. They cannot have HIV Aids, Hepatitis and Tuberculosis (TB). They have to be healthy.

“Then, they will need to undergo basic childcare training- for this, we work with relevant bodies like CPR Malaysia and Safety Aid. When they pass this, they need to take a psychometric test. They need to be mentally stable.

“The last step which for me is the hardest one, it is a one-on-one interview session with Nadira and myself. Sometimes, these babysitters can pass all the test, but when you meet them in person, we will know.

“I have turned down people at this stage. There was this lady who passed everything but I wasn’t confident when I was talking to her. I just didn’t get that energy,” says Muhaini.

Five important steps to getting hired as a babysitter with Kiddocare - Muhaini

Since it began its operation earlier this year, Kiddocare has now a close to 380 registered babysitters serving many families across Klang Valley.

“We have more than 2,000 registered clients now, some are regular, and some are tourists who know about our service.

“The number of clients is growing faster than the number of babysitters! It’s a good problem but it is still a problem!

“In fact, we are now seeing a lot of event companies and corporations coming to us and get us to set up a ‘Pop-up Nanny Service’. This is something very new. What we do here, is we set up a small temporary babysitting service during an event.

“The number of clients is growing faster than the number of babysitters! It’s a good problem but it is still a problem!

“This way, when you come to an event, you can bring your children and just leave them with us. We will prepare age-appropriate activities for them” she says.

The next plan for Kiddocare is expansion. “We obviously would like to go nationwide. But we need more money. So we are going through a crowdfunding process right now. We have huge demands from Johor, Melaka and Penang.

Aside from expanding Kiddocare, Muhaini also shares their plan to establish a Professional Nanny Service.

“We don’t want our babysitter to just remain as babysitters. We would like for them to progress and become a professional nanny. Who knows, they can even set up their own childcare centre or own a franchise of our pop-up nanny service.

“This Professional Nanny Service is very common overseas, but we don’t have it here at the moment. So we would like to explore that,” she says.

The dynamic duo; Muhaini and Nadira both came from different backgrounds and are quite accomplished in their respective industries prior to their venture in Kiddocare.

Nadira has a longstanding experience in technology and business while championing women empowerment through Girls in Tech, while Muhaini was a Director in Corporate Affairs in Weststar Group.

Muhaini recalls the first time the two co-founders met was through Muhaini’s mother: “That’s an interesting story because we were actually studying in the same college, doing Electrical and Electronic Engineering.

“But we never met, but we both were introduced by my mother. Nadira was in the same organization as my mother, National Council Women Organization (NCWO). My mother was the president and Nadira was the deputy,” she adds with a laugh.

Now both Muhaini and Nadira hopes to empower all women to fulfil their career aspiration, at the same time giving the best care for their children.