How to Build a New Hire Buddy Program

November 15, 2023
Kristjan Kristjansson
12 minute video

Embracing the Buddy System in Onboarding

A structured New Hire Buddy Programs is a key component of employee onboarding that can enhance productivity, and new hire experience by a significant margin. According to Sapling HR, 47% of businesses are already harnessing the power of buddy programs for onboarding new workers​​. This approach is not just a trend but a strategic tool proven to enhance the onboarding experience.

Why New Hires Prefer a Buddy

The preference for a buddy system is clear among new hires, with 56% favoring the presence of a mentor or buddy to guide them through their initial journey in a new workplace​​. This preference stems from the desire for a personalized and supportive entry into an organization, something traditional onboarding processes often lack.

The Impact on New Hire Proficiency

A buddy program is more than a warm welcome; it's a catalyst for efficiency. HCI.org reports that a whopping 87% of organizations found assigning a buddy or ambassador during the onboarding process effectively speeds up new hire proficiency​​. This statistic underlines the program's effectiveness in not only improving the new hire's experience but also their contribution to the organization.

Tutorial Insight: Building an Effective Buddy Program

In a recent tutorial, we explored how to construct a new hire buddy program. The journey begins with a form sent to the new hire to gather essential information, such as start dates, department details, LinkedIn profiles, interests, and buddy preferences. This information is pivotal for tailoring the onboarding experience to each individual.

The Role of Supervisors and Buddies

The supervisor’s role in this process is crucial. After the new hire submits their information, the supervisor is prompted to select a suitable buddy, taking into account the new hire's preferences and department. This selection process is facilitated by a user-friendly form that lists potential buddies, simplifying the match-making process.

Ensuring a Smooth Transition

The program employs a wait-and-trigger mechanism, holding off on further action until seven days before the new hire's start date. At this point, a series of automated messages and reminders are sent to both the new hire and their buddy, ensuring everyone is prepared for the first day.

Continuous Feedback and Evolution

The buddy program goes beyond the first day. Follow-up actions, reminders, and feedback forms are integrated to ensure continuous support and improvement. Feedback from both the new hire and the buddy is collected to assess the program's effectiveness and identify areas for enhancement.

Conclusion: A Step Towards Enhanced Onboarding

The adoption of a new hire buddy program is not just a step towards better onboarding; it's a stride towards creating a more supportive, efficient, and engaged workforce. As more organizations recognize the value of these programs, we expect to see a continued rise in their implementation and evolution.

We encourage you to explore the full potential of buddy programs in your organization's onboarding process. Share your experiences and help us all learn and grow in our journey towards better employee integration.


  1. Sapling HR, 2021: The Buddy Program
  2. ClickBoarding, 2020: New Hire Preferences
  3. HCI.org, 2019: Buddy Program Effectiveness