What are Employee Resource Groups (ERGs)?
An employee resource group (ERG) is a formally supported, voluntary, employee-led diversity and inclusion initiative. ERGs are typically organised around shared identities, interests, or backgrounds, with the goal of assisting employees by providing networking opportunities and fostering a more inclusive workplace. Organizations refer to ERGs using a variety of naming conventions, such as business resource groups, affinity groups, inclusion resource groups, or network groups.
What is the purpose of an ERG program?
While each ERG must define its own mission and objectives, the following are some of the most common ERG drivers:
- Employees who share a common identity can meet and support one another through an ERG programme, which fosters a sense of community and belonging.
- ERG programmes empower these groups by providing them with financial assistance, organisational assistance, and access to decision-makers.
- ERG programmes enable ERGs to communicate directly with leadership in order to express concerns and solve problems.
- ERGs serve as a resource for leadership in terms of employee and community issues, needs, and policies.
- ERG programmes aim to promote a respectful and inclusive workplace culture and to emphasise the value of inclusion.
What do ERGs look like?
ERGs come in a variety of shapes and sizes, with the following being some of the most popular:
- Diversity groups that promote a sense of belonging among employees who are members of a minority group in the organisation
- Volunteer programmes that allow employees to support charities and other volunteer efforts
- Employees with similar interests can socialise through affinity clubs.
- Professional development groups that allow employees to share their knowledge with colleagues from other departments.