The digital HQ

What is a digital HQ? (And why you need one now)

Today’s top companies are embracing a more flexible and productive way of working by uniting their teams and tools in one place

Author: Lauren JohnsonSeptember 8th, 2022Illustration by Justina Leisyte

In what feels like the blink of an eye, humanity has undergone a dramatic technological shift. We live, work, shop and play in a digital world, and there’s no going back. On top of this technological sea change, today’s organizations face a new challenge: global economic headwinds. Hiring pauses and tight budgets mean organizations must do more with the resources they already have. 

To thrive today—while keeping an eye on the future—business leaders must find digital-first solutions to boost productivity, automate processes, retain top talent and drive better business results. Enter the digital HQ.

A digital HQ is a single, virtual space to connect your people, tools, customers and partners for faster and more flexible work. When teams have the tools they need to be their most efficient and productive, your whole organization can focus on what matters most: delivering quality products and services.


“To me, the digital HQ is about making the historic shift to a digital-first world of work and curating an experience for employees, customers and partners that’s effective and relevant.”

Jennifer KadyVice President of Global Markets Sales, IBMRead story

Maximize productivity by empowering teams to work smarter

In competitive markets, speed is of the essence. Today’s leaders must bring innovations to market faster, respond to and resolve customer issues faster and close deals faster. Every company wants to be more productive—but how do companies actually succeed when it comes to accelerating work? 

A digital HQ boosts productivity by streamlining communication across your entire organization. Instead of one-off email chains, all your communication is organized into channels that are easy to create, join and search. When there’s a channel for everything going on at your company, everyone knows where to find the information they need. No more wasting time digging for that one email in your inbox. 

Speaking of features that save time, a digital HQ easily integrates with an organization’s existing tech stack, making it easy to share information across tools. With Slack as your digital HQ, you can connect the most popular workplace apps in a single place, making it easier to share information. And when teammates don’t have to chase down tasks and messages across multiple platforms, they have more time to focus on the work that really matters.

As for managing pesky but necessary everyday tasks, like scheduling recurring meetings or requesting PTO, a digital HQ makes it easy to automate routine processes in minutes, instantly freeing up time for high-impact work. No coding experience? No problem. Automation is for everyone; more than 80% of people who build workflows in Slack are non-technical.



increase in productivity

After implementing Slack, businesses on average experience a 26% increase in remote-employee productivity.

FY23 Customer Success MetricsSalesforce, survey of 1,742 Slack users, July 2022

Attract and keep top-tier talent

The verdict is in: Today’s knowledge workers want flexible work arrangements. Fifty-five percent of employees are open to looking for a new job in the next year, according to findings from the Summer 2022 Future Forum Pulse. That number shoots up to 70% for employees who are dissatisfied with their current job flexibility. When it comes to job satisfaction, flexibility ranks second only to compensation.

To ride the wave in a challenging labor market, companies must prioritize attracting talent and keeping existing employees motivated. By enabling employees to connect and collaborate from anywhere, a digital HQ helps companies provide the flexibility that today’s workforce demands. All workers can feel included and productive in a digital HQ, no matter where they live or what their daily schedules might look like. 

Flexible work practices are also essential to building inclusive workplaces, which is top of mind for many employers as diversity, equity and inclusion has become a priority in recent years. In fact, the desire for flexibility remains strongest among underrepresented groups, according to Future Forum research


“Underrepresented employees want flexibility in both where and when they work. These employees are crucial to the success of any organization. They feel a stronger sense of belonging and feel more productive when given the choice of how they want to work.”

Sheela SubramanianVice President and Co-Founder, Future Forum


There are added benefits too. According to the Harvard Business Review, employees are more likely to share early-stage ideas and welcome early feedback when working asynchronously because there’s less pressure to present polished work. 

Make the right decisions, fast

The time it takes to reach a critical business decision can make all the difference when it comes to better outcomes. But organizational silos can slow you down, making it hard for teams to access the data, feedback and information they need to make smart decisions. 

Because a digital HQ helps leaders access the information and stakeholders they need, without having to juggle platforms, they gain transparency and visibility—and can make decisions faster than ever.

Leaders can share their decisions and next steps in the digital HQ, so teams can stay aligned. Slack clips provide one way to keep employees in the know. With this feature, you can easily create short audio, video and screen recordings to provide an update, showcase work, walk through a product demo or give step-by-step instructions.



faster decision-making

After implementing Slack, businesses on average experience 26% faster decision-making.

FY23 Customer Success MetricsSalesforce, survey of 1,742 Slack users, July 2022

How IBM is automating the future of work in its digital HQ 

IBM is redefining the modern workplace and setting a new bar for IT service organizations. With Slack as its digital HQ, IBM unites its workforce of more than 250,000 employees worldwide for increased productivity. 

“A digital mindset is part of our DNA,” said Jennifer Kady, vice president of Global Markets Sales at IBM. “To me, the digital HQ is about making the historic shift to a digital-first world of work and curating an experience for employees, customers and partners that’s effective and relevant.”

IBM has also deployed Salesforce Service Cloud across its service organization, Salesforce Sales Cloud for its global sales function and Salesforce partner management solutions to thousands of IBM business partners. These optimized solutions, with Watson AI-powered integrations, are speeding problem resolution, improving insights and increasing business outcomes.


“With Slack, you can deliver business results inside the company—as well as extend those to customers and partners.”

Bob McDonaldVice President of CRM Experience, IBMRead story


The digital HQ is the workplace of the future. By transcending the limits of the physical workspace, the digital HQ makes it easier for all employees to access the people, apps and data they need, when they need it. With the digital HQ, everyday work moves along faster.

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