The Effects of Employee Resource Groups on Work Engagement an ...

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  • Title: The Effects of Employee Resource Groups on Work Engagement and Workplace Inclusion
  • Author(s): Ada T. Cenkci , Jeffrey Zimmerman, Tuba Bircan
  • Publisher: Common Ground Research Networks
  • Collection: Common Ground Research Networks
  • Series: Diversity in Organizations, Communities & Nations
  • Journal Title: The International Journal of Organizational Diversity
  • Keywords: Employee Resource Groups, Associate Resource Groups, Work Engagement, Workplace Inclusion, Inclusiveness
  • Volume: 19
  • Issue: 2
  • Year: 2019
  • ISSN: 2328-6261 (Print)
  • ISSN: 2328-6229 (Online)
  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.18848/2328-6261/CGP/v19i02/1-19
  • Citation: Cenkci, Ada T., Jeffrey Zimmerman, and Tuba Bircan. 2019. "The Effects of Employee Resource Groups on Work Engagement and Workplace Inclusion." The International Journal of Organizational Diversity 19 (2): 1-19. doi:10.18848/2328-6261/CGP/v19i02/1-19.
  • Extent: 19 pages

Abstract

Work engagement and workplace inclusion become more crucial as the US and global workforce continues to diversify. One of the human resource tools organizations use to encourage this diversity is Employee Resource Groups (ERGs or Associate Resource Groups). ERGs are voluntary groups of employees who share a common interest in organizations. Although ERGs are a popular tool in organizations, there is significant lack of research on ERGs, including their effects on individual employee outcomes. This study, therefore, explores the effects of ERGs on work engagement and workplace inclusion. A qualitative research study in a US retailer was conducted and seventeen one-on-one interviews with ERG members were administered. The data were analyzed using latent content analysis. The study indicates that membership in ERGs positively affects employee work engagement (in particular, vigor and feelings of connectedness) and workplace inclusion (specifically, feeling valued/respected and a sense of belonging). Overall, the findings underline the benefits of promoting ERGs within organizations.