So you want a nanny to take care of your four-year-old while you are away at work.
Or a maid who will be useful to your aged parents living in the suburbs.
The easier way to source these people is to turn to an agency.
Tarry. For, you could well be courting trouble from day two.
Changing lifestyles produce new words, phrases and concepts.
Manpower is one!
Scan the classifieds of the weekend editions of the newspapers and lo! you have a bounty of them.
But between those smart lines are some stories which should caution you.
Yasmin and her friend Sitha dropped in the other day to share their story with an unhappy ending.
Sitha had been looking for a maid who would stay at home and turned to a 'manpower services agency' in T. Nagar.
The reception was warm, the deal was quick.
Sitha had to just pay Rs 2300, which was one month's salary of the domestic servant that the agency would provide.
And 300 rupees as application fees.
Sitha did not mind the additional fee; manpower is what she wanted desperately.
And she had one the next morning.
But the maid left her house on some excuse and did not turn up at all.
When Sitha rushed to the services agency, it refused to refund the money. They promised a replacement.
The second maid made her appearance.
But she cooked up a story and left three days later.
A request for a third one got an evasive answer.
The agency said it was now facing manpower shortage.
You will have a new maid in 10 days, the agency convinced Sitha.
On the eleventh day when Sitha, seething in anger, drove down to the agency, the shutters of the office were down.
The watchman next door said the business had shifted.
Shopping in Mylapore some weeks later, she noticed a board that looked familiar.
Yes, it was the same agency she had gone to in T. Nagar.
To make a smart move, Sitha got her friend Yasmin to drop into the agency and make small talk.
The staff were the ones who had been at T. Nagar but they claimed to know nothing about the agency in T Nagar. But they promised they could help with maids.
Smart manpower agencies indeed.