In comparison with the first 6 months of 2012, the first half of 2013 has seen an increase in registrations of au pairs and host families of 56% and 31% respectively - more than doubling previous growth rates for these groups. This represents in excess of 160,000 new au pair registrations and 41,000 new host family registrations for the 6 months through June 2013.
The positive figures are to be found in traditional au pair host countries as well as in countries where the idea of au pairing is relatively new. Au pairs from France, Italy, USA, UK, Australia and Spain registered at above average growth rates ranging from 50% to more than 130% in the first half of 2013. For host families, particularly strong growth has been observed in Spain, New Zealand, Australia, Germany, France and the UK.
For the company, this rate of growth is highly gratifying and marks a clear and emphatic endorsement from the market of the AuPairWorld business model. A recent survey that polled more than 3,000 users of the site, for example, found that 95% of respondents would recommend AuPairWorld to other potential users.
The continuing success of AuPairWorld can be attributed to a variety of factors. Fundamentally, the attractiveness of au pairing as a means for young people to acquire linguistic and intercultural skills early in their careers appears to be increasing. With the growing significance of globalisation and the ongoing integration of Europe, such experiences are acquiring an increasingly high value for au pairs and host families alike.
With an audited market share of over 60% of the online au pair placement business in Europe*, AuPairWorld's success is, however, not only a function of the general popularity of au pairing. A decisive factor is also its unique mix of excellent functionality combined with friendly and highly experienced personal support. Often it is assumed that the only service provided by an online au pairing portal is search functionality to match au pairs and host families. But a successful au pair experience is more than just the initial search, and AuPairWorld has a wide range of offerings that is continually evolving to meet these extended needs.
These offerings take many forms. On the AuPairWorld staff there are dedicated experts who are continually researching and updating information regarding au pairing opportunities and regulatory requirements in 23 key host countries. When individual questions or problems arise, the AuPairWorld Support Team is there to provide the necessary input by telephone and email in six languages. And the AuPairWorld staff quality-check profiles created by the website users to ensure a high level of data quality and excellent security for all users.
AuPairWorld's service mix is highly distinctive and is making an impression on users around the globe, as seen in the exceptional growth in the use of the online agency. Uwe Regenbogen, founder of AuPairWorld, explains the site's success this way: “We use the strengths of the Internet to present and filter information, but that's only the first step. We are very much aware that we are serving people as they try to establish and develop important relationships, and that requires much more than just the right algorithms. Finally, our aim is to help each au pair and host family have a great experience. It's working on that added value that keeps us busy at AuPairWorld.”
* Source: Independent assessment provided on 24.04.2013 by an expert publicly appointed and sworn in by the Chamber of Industry and Commerce (IHK) in Kassel, to verify AuPairWorld's market share in the sector of internet-based au pair placement business in Europe. The registrations and activity of au pairs and host families from EU member states were analysed during the period 31.12.2012 – 17.02.2013.