When you’re writing your resume, should you include your religious affiliation? Will it help or hurt your chances for the job?
Contributing to Society
Being able to succeed professionally is what many people strive for, and the reasons for that are different: all people need to provide for their families/themselves, become professionals in what they do, and contribute to the common good of the community in which they live. To get a job though, is a tough process. It requires not only long hours of searching for the right employer and the best offers, but also creating a resume that will highlight all your virtues and qualifications. What if one of your outstanding virtues, apart from being a hard-working professional, is your belief in God and living your life to serve him? Is it a good idea to tell those who are looking for a good employee to include their faith?
The answer to this question is not that simple. There are a lot of factors everyone should consider before composing a resume and adding information about their religious beliefs. In this article, I’ll guide you through the possible results of you stating a religious worldview on your CV or resume. Let’s start with the motifs about why organizations would want to know more about you and the tendencies and shifts in your professional life when it comes to religion.
Why Religion is Important
There are more than a few reasons why our faith is important to us, and the optimistic scenario is that the employers would like to see if they can accommodate your needs, adjust working hours/vacation time, and allowing the work to get done in a timely manner. The less optimistic reason is biased as they are scared of terrorism at the workplace and they might have an irrational fear of religious fanatics. They might worry about them causing a lot of harm to other people in the work place.
The Concept of Equality
We’ve heard a lot recently about prejudice at the work place and bias lawsuits filed against employers who differ from the majority of employers in terms of various aspects. Things like race, gender, nationality, religious affiliation, etc. Even though the Bible teaches us that we should not be biased or prejudiced against anyone, there are people who don’t follow the concept of equality.
Various companies (especially those operating globally) try to accommodate the needs of every employee to avoid religious discrimination at their workplaces, as practicing religion is considered a fundamental right for every human being, but some employers remove this question from their job applications in order to prevent even the appearance of prejudice. Then there are some that openly welcome employers of different religious groups by providing a work place that has a more inclusive, diverse corporate culture. Unfortunately, others end up being sued by their employees for being discriminated against. With all this going-on in a professional sphere, it’s natural that you might hesitate whether to put your spiritual affiliations right up-front. Below I’ll explain why this is not a yes-no discussion, because it heavily depends on a few things you need to keep in mind.
To Mention it or Not?
Should you mention whether you have a religious affiliation or not? It may matter, depending upon what field you are applying for. One of the things that can ease your mind is to understand who your potential employer is. For example, if you’d like to work in the organization that is connected to the religious practices or denomination you follow, mentioning your affiliation may be a crucial factor in considering your candidacy. And what could be better than having a community of like-minded people to work with and to work for a common cause while serving God together?
Another thing is when the field of your interest has little to do with religion (like accounting or trading); mentioning your religious affiliation may not help your chances of getting that job. It doesn’t mean you need to hide your beliefs or lie about them, but it may be best to not include it on your resume.
The Corporate Culture
It’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the company first, before you apply and look as to whether your work ethic values align with their corporate ethics. How does it apply to mentioning your religion on the resume? For one thing, it gives you the benefit of learning whether this organization follows the Equal Opportunity Act and whether it had incidents of religious discrimination in the past. Remember, if you haven’t found any previous cases, it doesn’t mean there weren’t any, as many lawsuits end in settlement and NDA agreements (non-disclosure).
Why Do You Want to Share It?
Because religious affiliation is optional information on the resume, it may send a message for those who read the resume. Maybe the reader is an atheist; maybe they’re against any religion whatsoever. Why would you want to share some information with the people you don’t even know? Yes, the teaching of Christ says that we need to love our neighbor regardless of who she/he is, but the only problem is that not everyone is ready to do that. No one can tell you what to put on your resume, but since there are a few rules to the Find a Job game, it’d be a great idea to follow them. Remember, your CV or resume is what you want your prospective employer to know about you before meeting you in person, so you should make your skills and knowledge a primary focus and leave the additional personal information for the interview. The checklists below will help you to make the right choice, and may God help you find a good job. 
A Checklist to Consider Before Putting Religion on Your Resume
Look to see if your field is related to providing religious services.
Learn the company’s politics about equal opportunities and the anti-discrimination chapters of their Code of Conduct.
Study the law of your state that guards your right to practice religion.
A Checklist for Those Who Put Their Religion on Their Resume
Focus on the community work more you’ve done (it will add you some points to team-playing and organizational skills).
Don’t try to convince the reader to practice it.
Don’t elaborate too much on it (you’ll be seen as an employee who is about to enter the corporate business environment, so your skills and qualifications, education, and previous experience are more valuable information).
Author’s Bio: Alex C. Porter is a professional career expert and resume writer at CraftResumes . He writes useful content on HR, recruiting tendencies, and the art of making an outstanding CV.
Here is some related reading for you: Should a Christian Work at a Bar, Night Club or Casino? 
Resource – Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), Crossway Bibles. (2007). ESV: Study Bible: English standard version. Wheaton, Ill: Crossway Bibles. Used by permission. All rights reserved.