In 2015, 17,000 people searched for childcare providers in West Sussex using our website. When looking for childcare, parents tell us that it is important to have information about whether businesses have vacancies, as well as a good quality description of the services and activities on offer.
You can use our Family Information Service website, free of charge, to market your childcare business.
Using your online Provider Portal user name and password, supply us with the necessary information. If your details are not appearing, or you do not know your user name and password, let us know.
Once you have been added to our website, you can update your advertised information by logging in whenever is convenient for you and as often as you like.
Do I have to contact you when I get my Ofsted registration?
No. Ofsted inform us you have registered and we send you a welcome email and login to access the Provider Portal. On the Portal you can view the information Ofsted have given us. You then provide us with other details about the services you offer, which forms the basis of your profile on our website. Advertising is free, but you can opt out if you wish.
How do we get on to your website?
Complete your profile on the Provider Portal. This will then instruct us to put your details on the Family Information Service website.
Our website allows users to choose how information is returned to them, including:
- the date that the childcare provider last updated their information
- the distance from their home.
How do you know about my vacancies?
Once we have your profile, which includes your vacancy information, you can update it via the Provider Portal. We particularly want to know if you have vacancies to fill and when you are full.
What if we know we will have a vacancy coming up in the future, but it’s not available now?
We can make it clear that a vacancy will be available from a particular date, so update your profile as soon as you know that you’ll have vacancies.
Why do some parents not get my vacancy details when they live in my area?
The individual needs of children, parents and carers are discussed with a Family Information Service assistant. A list of childcare settings with current vacancies which match their criteria is sent to them. If they do not find a provider that meets their needs they contact us again and a wider search will then be made.
We’re not getting any phone calls from parents. What can I do about this?
You can update your profile online which puts your details to the top of the web vacancy list. Review the information parents see about you and your service. Are you telling them enough about what their child will do when they are with you? The training you have done? The skills you have? We can refer you to a member of the childcare team to make further suggestions about ways to extend your service and increase the chance of you matching a parent's criteria.
We haven’t had many calls recently. Does this mean there is not enough work around?
Not necessarily. The Family Information Service matches the enquiry to the vacancy. This cuts down on the number of calls having to be made, which is beneficial for parents and providers. This is why it is so important we have as much information about your service as possible, especially your current and future vacancies.
How do we know what you are telling people about our service?
It is based on your profile, which is the information you give to us. We are always happy to let you have a printout of the information we send out about you, or you can check the information online if you have opted to be on our website.
As a childminder, do you provide my full address to parents and carers?
No, we provide your village, town and postcode only. You also have the option of not providing any contact information on your website entry, and only display the Family Information Service phone number instead. We will take the initial phone call and if we are happy that the caller is a parent or carer, we will provide them with your contact number or forward emails to you. Before you choose this option, contact us, as it may reduce the number of enquiries you receive.