Should You Start a Christian or Interfaith Employee Resource Group (ERG)?

Article / Produced by TOW Project and Partners
Christian vs interfaith employee resource groups

Should your Employee Resource Group be Christian or Interfaith? Your context will help determine the right strategy.

Some companies are open to ERGs dedicated to a single faith. Other companies fear singling out a particular religion and leaving out others. If your company is opposed to a Christian ERG, the best option is often to propose an interfaith group.

Christians needn’t be afraid of the interfaith option. An interfaith ERG does not demand that its participants water down their faith, or accept that all beliefs are equal. Interfaith simply acknowledges that each religious group has deeply-held beliefs. Each group has a right to the benefits that come from gathering with like-minded believers in the workplace. The interfaith umbrella makes this possible for everyone.

In an interfaith ERG, Christians can plan activities that nurture employees of the Christian faith. Muslims can gather around their shared beliefs. And Jews can organize celebrations that reflect their heritage.

Looking outward, interfaith ERGs plan community events that inspire their coworkers and benefit worthy causes. These campaigns demonstrate that unity is possible despite cultural differences. They build company morale. And they show that even as each participant holds strongly to their personal beliefs, all are free to express the fullness of their religious identity in the workplace.


Formal + Christian

  • Company funded
  • Listed on company website
  • Specifically Christian
  • Does not exclude other faiths from starting their own faith-based Employee Resource Group (ERG)

Informal + Christian

  • Not company funded
  • Not listed on company website
  • May still include thousands of Christian members

Formal + Interfaith

  • Company funded
  • Listed on company website
  • Open to all faiths

Informal + Interfaith

  • Informal networks of people of faith
  • May come together to plan a community event or charity drive
  • May develop into more formal groups

For some places or countries, a Christian ERG can never be formal.

At companies such as ExxonMobil or Amazon, they have a very organized, informal Christian group. They don't get funding, they're not on the external website, but they have thousands of participants.

At Intel I kicked off this formal multi-faith group. I think it's the best of both worlds. The goal is to create a Christian group, but at the same time help the Bahai or the Druze or the Hindu. It opens up doors to talk with them about their faith. They feel supported. At the same time, you can email the head of HR and they will actually listen to you, because they see you're trying to help everyone at the corporation, even if they agree with you or not. Don't you wish everyone would do that?

- Craig Carter, Global Leader of Intel’s Christian Employee Resource Group