Co-operatives UK is launching an online community where new and existing co-ops can ask questions, offer advice and discuss issues with peers.
The new platform is part of The Hive, the business support programme run by Co-operatives UK in partnership with the Co-operative Bank. It provides advice and support for new and existing co-ops, helping them to grow.
In addition to the comprehensive resources available on The Hive’s website and an ongoing training and advice programme, the online community encourages co-ops to speak directly to one another and share best practice.
The core features of the community will be a Q&A forum to help community members start and run a business, and member groups that allow co-ops in membership of Co-operatives UK to discuss issues in more depth.
“We know the benefit of connecting those who are facing similar issues so they can share approaches and ideas,” said Emma Laycock, co-operative advice manager at Co-operatives UK, the network for Britain’s thousands of co-ops.
“The online community, made possible through The Hive programme, is a simple and practical way to do this. From new starts discussing the first steps or established organisations sharing best practice, it aims to become a place where co-ops of all kinds can find support from their peers.
“What The Hive’s online community offers is different; it’s a space to ask and answer questions about running co-operative organisations and have more detailed business-related discussions.”
The new community will be rolled out over the coming months.