Launching 12 Employee Resource Groups in 12 Months: Success Stories and Lessons Learned

Concurrent Session
Launching 12 Employee Resource Groups in 12 Months: Success Stories and Lessons Learned
10/29/2019 02:00 PM - 03:30 PM |
Salon ABC (Third Floor)
1.50 SHRM PDCs
| Competencies: Communication, Global & Cultural Effectiveness, Relationship Management
| Intended Audience: Beginner (Committing to I&D)
Workplace Application:
Learn how to promote employee engagement through employee resource groups and how the rapid growth of RTI International’s ERG program (12 in 12 months) has contributed to engagement. 

In 2017, RTI International launched employee resource groups (ERGs) to leverage shared knowledge and collective experiences to reach RTI diversity and inclusion goals, enhance RTI's inclusive work environment, and promote workplace equality for all staff. Less than 12 months after launch, 12 individual ERGs, boasting membership exceeding 1,500 staff (approximately 30% of RTI's employees), were operational, holding events and advocating with leadership. This session will highlight best practices, lessons learned, tangible outcomes, and business impact.

Learning Objectives:

  • Persuasively communicate the business case for creating an ERG program and effectively engage stakeholders at all levels within the company.
  • Understand and apply best practices for rolling out an ERG program efficiently including creating a timeline and designing templates to streamline ERG formation.
  • Identify opportunities to develop leadership in employees who want to start or lead ERGs.
  • Plan outreach and socialization activities that encourage ERG formation and member engagement.
  • Identify potential risks and roadblocks to employee involvement, and strategies for mitigating them.
Kristina Brunelle Photo
Kristina Brunelle, chair, Diversity & Inclusion Council, RTI International
Kristy Lowther Photo
Kristy Lowther, ERG program manager & PRIDE ERG co-leader, diversity & inclusion, RTI International