Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) can make your company a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive place to work. However, their effectiveness is tied to how much support these groups receive from your organization.
ERGs are coalitions of employees who form alliances based on shared characteristics, interests, or life experiences. Studies have shown a strong correlation between ERG activity and improved DEI metrics, and when surveyed, employees nearly unanimously agree that ERGs boost company culture. The benefits don’t stop there; ERGs can also give a big boost to your business. According to the World Economic Forum, companies leading with diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging are 25%-36% more likely to outperform on profitability.
Set your ERGs up for success
If you want to maximize an ERG’s impact, you must create the right environment for ERGs to succeed. In Wisq’s eBook, Creating Safe Spaces: 5 Ways to Support Employee Resource Groups, we sit down with experts in the field to outline strategic ways you can give ERGs the resources and support they need.
Download the full ebook PDF here, and find an accessible version of the ebook here.
Check out an overview of the resource below.
1. Provide tangible support, budget, and resources to ERG members.
While ERGs are often a great way for employees to connect and make friends, there are benefits beyond socialization that ERGs can also supply. Give your ERGs the resources to establish mentorship programs, leadership training, and more.
2. Use executive sponsorship to boost ERG leaders.
ERGs make a bigger impact when they have a champion on the executive team to promote their causes. Employees who volunteer to lead ERGs aren’t usually in positions of power in their day-to-day roles, and an executive sponsor can ensure ERGs get the visibility they need.
3. Create a welcoming and psychologically safe work environment.
ERGs often tackle sensitive issues, and employees need to feel comfortable speaking up. In an ideal world, ERG members will advocate for underrepresented groups in every conversation at your company.
4. Use technology to your advantage.
Technology plays a central role in ERG success. ERGs can use Wisq, for example, to create a space outside of productivity tools to meet and collaborate. But no matter what technology you choose, there are a multitude of ways ERGs can use technology to achieve their goals.
5. Align executives and ERG leaders around goals that support company objectives. Later, measure the success.
Give your ERGs a strategic role at your company by connecting ERG goals to your overall business objectives. Work together with ERG leaders to establish what ERGs should achieve and define what metrics you can use to gauge progress.
"When the C-suite and everyone else has agreed to support a strategic objective that benefits the members of an ERG, magic can happen.” -Gena Cox, inclusion strategist and CEO of Feels Human
There’s no limit to the benefits ERGs can bring to your organization, but they need proper support to thrive. To learn more about how you can create a safe space for ERGs to flourish, check out our eBook today.