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Sitter service is day care alternative

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in HR Management,Human Resources

With 1,500 employees at its Chicago headquarters, advertising firm Leo Burnett isn’t quite large enough for an on-site day care center for employees’ children, says HR Manager Meredith Reinker.

So it signed up for a service that matches parents with local nannies and baby sitters. Reinker describes it as “almost a dating web site for parents and baby sitters.” Parents can post their job openings on the site, and interested sitters respond.

The site, Sittercity.com, also lists elder caregivers, pet sitters, tutors and housekeepers. About 20% of Leo Burnett’s Chicago employees have used it since 2007—at least to look.

“Almost all of our new parents check it out and create an account,” says Reinker. “A lot of them hire full-time nannies from the site.” Users can evaluate sitters by posting online comments to help other parents decide whether a sitter is a match for them, Reinker says.

Employees pay only for the time of the sitters they hire, and Leo Burnett pays $3,000 a year to give them access to the site.

Contact: Meredith Reinker at (312) 220-1436.

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