Digital Hives: What You Really Need to Know?

Business leaders across the globe have started realizing the importance of social media in improving employee participation. Investing in Enterprise 2.0 technology platforms isn’t enough for achieving success. 

But, how to get large-scale engagement among employees? Well, first and foremost, it requires an in-depth understanding of company culture and its social dynamics. What triggers a new behavior?

Is the top management willing to get rid of their traditional top-down approach? Can the digital activities complement real-world or other offline events? These are some of the questions that company leaders need to consider. 

Companies that struggle with employee involvements lack the above attributes. They do take the initiatives, but often it gets stuck in middle management. Such companies are unable to gather feedback and ideas from their employees.

That’s where Digital Hives steps in. Now, you must be thinking about what a digital hive is. Right? In this blog, we have discussed almost all the important things. So, continue reading it.

What are Digital Hives?

When it comes to defining digital hives, it is a process that aims to solve a specific or set of problems, establish new habits, and bring an organizational change. It is online communities built to tackle the challenges that businesses face.

Why are companies opting for digital hives? 

Many businesses are trying to bring change, evolve their strategies, and online communities can help achieve that. These communities can boost communication, promote collaboration, and provide easy access to information in the companies. All these are essential elements for them to evolve and grow.

statistics about employee engagement

Online communities keep employees engaged. Harvard business review report says that 71 percent of company leaders believe that employee engagement is crucial for an organization’s success. Great online communities where employees can connect and communicate also leads to higher productivity.

So how to get digital hive buzzing? Let’s find that out. 

Four Ways to Drive Change

Here are four approaches for creating digital hives for your business.  

  1. A Better Strategy for Employee Engagement

    It has always been the top management that would formulate the strategy and implement it. Feedback would often get asked from the middle managers but not from the employees of the company. It is starting to change due to social technologies, allowing for inclusive employee input and modifications.

    A better approach can be the management hackathon concept. The concept is about providing a platform for participants to discuss ideas, contribute expertise collectively, and express opinions. Here are some suggestions to get better results: 

    • Present the problem in stages. It will prevent participants from getting overwhelmed
    • Use volunteers instead of conscripts 
    • Offer your employees training on how to think about innovation 
    • Organize offline events such as weekly cafeteria sessions or workshops. It will supplement the online discussions 
    • Use authentic tone
  2. Social Chain for Connecting Silos

    What is one of the biggest challenges for improving employee engagement? It is to get your employees to talk to each other and cooperate across different departments. The initial excitement for your initiatives of employee engagement will wear off, and your employees will get back to their old habits.

    There is a solution that we call the social chain. It’s a digital platform that links everyone working in the different departments of a company. The social chain creates a collaboration where employees can share how they do things and identify areas where they can work together to tackle bottlenecks or problems.

    You can also assign chain leaders to monitor these conversations and share their thoughts when required. 

  3. Enlist your Key Customers

    Client Rim” is a group of customers that a business considers most trusted and regular. They are a group that has extensive experience with the company, its workings, people and genuinely wants the business to succeed. 

    Client Rim acts as both enthusiastic customers and the strongest critics of your business. They can help you bring the change by providing feedback on product quality or service standards. Use the power of social technologies to gather such people for ideas on improving the customer proposition and showing client-centricity.

    There are many ways in which you can connect with your key customers. Here are some suggestions: 

    • Employees and individual customers can have online conversations through a buddy system. 
    • Mobile apps can show customer quotes on the service or product experience. It should also continually keep updating.
    • Organize a customer-experience event in which employees and customers can explore new directions to common goals. You can even get customer’s help in solving frustrating problems.
    • Create a group of mystery shoppers who can go through internal conversations anonymously and comment on them.
  4. Unite your Sales Team to achieve Higher Sales

    We are often uncomfortable when it comes to trying out new things. Here is an example of how a beverage company in Africa used social media to win back its market share. 

    The company implemented a system that used digital hives to give real-time and personalized information to their sales representatives and call-center agents. The call-center team would collect data based on calls and emails from the sales rep and district managers.

    The company also analyzed where they are facing tougher competition or which stock-keeping units were selling well. These insights would get shared with agents and representatives. At least two or three SMS would get sent daily to keep them well informed. 

    Moreover, the company also introduced a call-center leaderboard. It allowed executives to track which of their agents are more responsive to new information. Executives were then able to determine which ones need more guidance and feedback. 

    All this led to the company boosting its cross-and upselling rates to more than 50 percent compared to the previous 4 percent. 

    What Digital Hives here did was that it put the collective expertise at the hands of frontline reps. It made them closer to the business, which led to better performance feedback.  

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How to Implement Digital Hive?

how to implement digital hive?
  1. Have an Implementation Plan

    Rolling out new technologies without a plan will lead to failure. Here is what it should include: 

    1. Communicate your expectations
    2. Keep tracking progress
    3. Define every role
    4. Reward the contributors 
    5. Ask for feedback 
    6. Encourage conversations 
  2. Develop an Internal Culture of Content

    A culture of content is about accepting the importance of content marketing and internal knowledge sharing across the organization. Here is how you can foster this culture: 

    1. Establish a vision and similar messaging 
    2. Establish tools to enable cross-functional sharing 
    3. Recognize a content leader
    4. Implement executive buy-in  
    5. Encourage employee engagement 
  3. Choose the Right Technology

    Choose the technology wisely for your digital hive. Ask yourself: 

    • Is the solution easy to use and intuitive 
    • Does it have a Q&A function for people to find their answers? 
    • What is the implementation timeframe? 
    • Are others using this solution, and what kind of results are they getting?   

    So, this is how one can implement digital hive in the company or organization and get various benefits. 


Digital hives are still the earliest technology and will keep evolving. It creates clear engagement rules and a level playing field where people will encourage others, seek recognition, and perform well. A digital hive will foster a collective adoption and participation and spur a change throughout an organization.  

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