Award winning female nursery owner rates technology for business success
Take a spoonful of good old fashioned fun and a healthy dose of modern features, and you have the secret to Cbabiesafe nurseries success. It all started in 2002 when Philippa Stephen-Martin opened her first nursery in Hove; and the first 'webcam nursery' in Britain. Her determination and innovative approach have led to her considerable success, constant expansion and full occupancy figures.
Published on September/October 2008, Nursery Management Today



Having grown considerably over the past six years; expansion is set to continue. Philippa now owns two large nurseries with numerous indoor and outdoor play areas, and dedicated kitchen facilities. Having recognised a gap in the market, Philippa wanted to provide a practical solution for working and commuter parents; and offers extended opening hours.

Philippa recognised that a key concern for parents was leaving their child in the hands of strangers. She combated this head on with a complete open doors policy. Parents are invited to visit the nursery as often as they wish to tell stories or volunteer. And if they can't make it in person, webcams enable parents to make virtual visits.

These webcams were instrumental in Philippa's early success and she won the Natwest Every Woman award in 2003 in recognition of her achievements.

"The award was judged on a number of criteria; innovation was one. Some people ask what made me install webcams in the first place; I just don't understand why no-one did it before. They help develop the parental bond and assure parents that their child is in safe hands." comments Philippa.

Cbabiesafe has cameras in every room including the outdoor areas. Parents can watch their child in lessons or at play, although the webcams are generally used less over time.

On average, viewing times drop from 15 minutes every day in the beginning, to 5 minutes every three days after just a few weeks. This is because the webcams facilitate trust. Operating an open doors policy means parents feel confident in the level of care being offered. Since Philippa pioneered webcams, many nurseries have followed suit and are seeing huge improvements in enrolment percentages.

The more trust parents have in a nursery, the more concerns are alleviated. Philippa tells us, "Parents feel relieved that they can be involved in their child's day via webcams and I would never take that away from them. The webcams are a fantastic investment for any nursery."

Summing up what makes her nursery really special, Philippa concludes "All my staff are approachable, friendly; and, most importantly, they aren't afraid to get their hands dirty. They work hard and make sure the children are always happy, busy and at home. I couldn’t ask for a better team!"

For more information contact Cbabiesafe on 01273 770441 (Hove) or 01903 215020 (Worthing).

If you would like further information about parental webcams, CCTV or security for your nursery, please visit www.nurserycam.co.uk or contact NurseryCam Ltd on 01344 751688 or email info@nurserycam.co.uk.

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