We are creating some awesome events for you. Kindly bear with us.

Inside look into Singapore Government’s Innovation Lab, IDA Hive

Inside look into Singapore Government’s Innovation Lab

The IDA Hive, launched in October last year, serves as headquarters to Singapore’s Government Digital Services (GDS) apps and data team. It supports the evolving focus from just meeting needs to improving the experience and communication in transaction with the Government.

The facility hosts a multidisciplinary team of 100 data scientists, software coders, and engineers tasked to develop and enhance government websites and apps more regularly as citizens’ needs evolve.

Some of the more notable digital services created by the app development team at IDA Hive include Beeline, MyResponder, MyConnection, amongst others (more information at the end of the article).

The 13,000 square feet space, IDA Hive contains research facilities and labs for user experience and A/B testing – in turn which help to influence the development and outcome of a product. To also encourage creativity and collaboration, the space includes open discussion areas, moveable desks and even recreational facilities. The environment mimics that of a Google office where bureaucracy is levelled out in an active and conducive working environment.

This facility also provides consultancy on areas in data and analytics to serve government agencies in developing new digital services.

OpenGov recently sat down with the Government Digital Services team at the IDA Hive, to hear more about what they are working on and how they provide user-friendly and digital savvy service platforms for government agencies.

They told us that the buzzwords you will hear around these spaces are “agile” and “user experience”. While the waterfall approach paves an early sequential process, it leads to a product which is not as cost friendly and potentially obsolete due to a linear process, the agile methodology ensures the project is constantly evolving at a rapid pace to remain useful and relevant.

The team at the IDA Hive prides itself on taking an agile approach to product development, which helps it stay current with the pace of technology.

Driving User Experience Design for Government Digital Services

To further emphasise the engagement with the public, the IDA Hive promotes this culture by directly through new and innovative means. The digital services that are being developed by the team are directly tested through physical user interaction – these provide insight into user experience design when developing new apps. 

Sitting in the Hive is a Design Experience lab, where end users are brought in to test the digital service. The team behind the project studies how the user interacts with the platform, to see if each application is accessible and well-received by end users.

 “We want to test how people really react to the design and user experience of our digital services. When they sit in front of the screen, with the help of HD cameras, sensors and other tools, we are able to identify what areas are well received or need to be improved,” said Lim Eyung, Assistant Director, Government Digital Services.

This brings us back to the nascent stages of project development where the end user is brought in to help the team better understand pain points of the application or platform.

As over 1,000 government technology projects are being undertaken throughout the Government of Singapore, there are limited resources of which that can be applied to each.

When taking on a project, the team at the IDA Hive helps with the UXD portion of the government technology initiative, providing help where the government agencies need it most.

“The Government Digital Services team, is seen as a multidisciplinary team bringing developers, software engineers, designers, and project managers together,” said Liu Feng Yuan, Director, Government Digital Services Data Science Division, IDA,

“As a lot of government agencies are working to improve service delivery, we are able to help in making decisions using data analytics.”

By focusing on this, the team at the IDA Hive is able to take what the agency wants and use their own skills to develop a digital platform that will be manageable and attractive to citizens.

IDA Hive Continuing to Deliver Value and Impact in 2016

For 2016, the team at the IDA Hive will continue focusing on delivering value through their services and taking on projects which will create a lasting impact.

“We have a few products out there, we need to expand and improve on them,” stated Feng Yuan, “We have new ideas from agencies who want to do things with us. We try to be focused and build products that will have a very high impact to make the best use of our limited resources.”

With the restructuring of IDA and MDA, taking shape, the IDA Hive will reside under the newly formed Government Technology Agency (GovTech).

“It is pretty exciting for a lot of people here. It is a validation of what IDA Hive has been doing for the past year,” Liu Feng Yuan told us,

“GovTech will drive technology for the public good, in connection with the Smart Nation platform. What is the Smart Nation vision, if not, a combination of digital services, the use of data, and use of new technologies … We are really a supporting part of that vision.”

Having so many different perspectives in such a collaborative environment will continue to help the IDA Hive succeed in contributing to public good through its services.

The establishment of GovTech helps contribute to the greater vision for Government Digital Services and the team at the Hive is expected to have a productive and exciting year ahead.

For information on meetups and sessions taking place at IDA Hive, look out on the IDA Facebook page for more details.

Here are some apps that you can check out:


Shaving time, saving lives – volunteers are notified of cardiac arrest cases within 400 metres of their location and able to assist in performing CPR or helping to apply the AED


Your crowd-sourced bus service, tapping on data analytics and demand to get you to your destination.


Convenience at your fingertips to share feedback on municipal issues.


Crowdsourcing to improve quality of experience for mobile broadband users

Find out more about the apps by downloading them from the Google PlayStore or Apple AppStore today!


Qlik’s vision is a data-literate world, where everyone can use data and analytics to improve decision-making and solve their most challenging problems. A private company, Qlik offers real-time data integration and analytics solutions, powered by Qlik Cloud, to close the gaps between data, insights and action. By transforming data into Active Intelligence, businesses can drive better decisions, improve revenue and profitability, and optimize customer relationships. Qlik serves more than 38,000 active customers in over 100 countries.


CTC Global Singapore, a premier end-to-end IT solutions provider, is a fully owned subsidiary of ITOCHU Techno-Solutions Corporation (CTC) and ITOCHU Corporation.

Since 1972, CTC has established itself as one of the country’s top IT solutions providers. With 50 years of experience, headed by an experienced management team and staffed by over 200 qualified IT professionals, we support organizations with integrated IT solutions expertise in Autonomous IT, Cyber Security, Digital Transformation, Enterprise Cloud Infrastructure, Workplace Modernization and Professional Services.

Well-known for our strengths in system integration and consultation, CTC Global proves to be the preferred IT outsourcing destination for organizations all over Singapore today.


Planview has one mission: to build the future of connected work. Our solutions enable organizations to connect the business from ideas to impact, empowering companies to accelerate the achievement of what matters most. Planview’s full spectrum of Portfolio Management and Work Management solutions creates an organizational focus on the strategic outcomes that matter and empowers teams to deliver their best work, no matter how they work. The comprehensive Planview platform and enterprise success model enables customers to deliver innovative, competitive products, services, and customer experiences. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, with locations around the world, Planview has more than 1,300 employees supporting 4,500 customers and 2.6 million users worldwide. For more information, visit www.planview.com.


SIRIM is a premier industrial research and technology organisation in Malaysia, wholly-owned by the Minister​ of Finance Incorporated. With over forty years of experience and expertise, SIRIM is mandated as the machinery for research and technology development, and the national champion of quality. SIRIM has always played a major role in the development of the country’s private sector. By tapping into our expertise and knowledge base, we focus on developing new technologies and improvements in the manufacturing, technology and services sectors. We nurture Small Medium Enterprises (SME) growth with solutions for technology penetration and upgrading, making it an ideal technology partner for SMEs.


HashiCorp provides infrastructure automation software for multi-cloud environments, enabling enterprises to unlock a common cloud operating model to provision, secure, connect, and run any application on any infrastructure. HashiCorp tools allow organizations to deliver applications faster by helping enterprises transition from manual processes and ITIL practices to self-service automation and DevOps practices. 


IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and business services provider. We help clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM’s hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently and securely. IBM’s breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM’s legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity and service.

Send this to a friend