Dak Childcare: “The HPO framework helps us implement our strategic plan”

The HPO Center talks to Bart Elenga, Financial Director of the DAK Childcare

“Nowadays, it is far from certain that advisers will make good on the promises made during their highly polished presentations. But the same cannot be said of the HPO Center. Their experts made a number of promises and lived up to every one of their claims regarding their contribution to the HPO procedure.

Good framework

During last year’s meeting for directors of childcare facilities, Simon van der Veer and Esther Mollema from the HPO Center held a presentation, during which they talked about the added value of openness and transparency within an organization. This is exactly how we strive to run our DAK centers.

I was at the meeting together with the chairman of our Board of Directors. Once we heard what they had to say, we looked at each other and knew immediately that we could use the help of the HPO Center. Our strategic plan runs through this summer, after which we are going to formulate a new plan. The five pillars and 35 characteristics of a High Performance Organization could be of help. Their scientifically founded ideas provide a good framework for testing whether your plan lacks any essential aspects.

En route to HPO

We have deliberately chosen to use the HPO scan as a zero measurement. We now plan to use this foundation to work towards becoming a high performance organization. The HPO Center has already held two workshops for our employees to provide feedback on the results of the zero measurement and to present the greatest learning accelerators to us. In addition to the openness that we strive to achieve with our management team, continuous improvement is also an important condition for becoming an HPO. We do not wish to enforce from above, but rather create support by simplifying our working procedures with the help of all those involved.


Since 2005, subsidies in the childcare sector are no longer received by the childcare facilities, but by the parents. This means we need to be competitive and have had to switch to a more commercial approach. One of the learning accelerators is that we make clear to customers what makes us unique in the childcare market.

This was the first time the HPO Center had examined an organization in the childcare sector. Simon took the time to spend an entire afternoon with the groups at one of our 76 locations. We were quite pleased with this high degree of involvement.”

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