What Is a Buddy Program?

What Is a Buddy Program?

A buddy program can accelerate the acclimation and productivity of new hires. It can also play a major role in enhancing job satisfaction making it easier for employers to retain their new hires. Putting a buddy system in place can build an immediate personal connection between new employees and the organization. Plus, new employees who easily merge into a work environment and culture and are made to feel part of the organization gain more confidence and are likely to become more productive faster. 

What is a “Buddy Program”?

A buddy program is a great tool that helps you enhance the onboarding process of your new hires. By matching a new employee with a ”buddy”, you will be able to accelerate the onboarding process of your new hires while equipping them with the tools needed to deal with any issues that they may face early on in their jobs.

What’s the difference between a Buddy, Coach, and Mentor?

A mentoring program aims to help the employee with their development on both the personal and professional levels.

A coaching program aims to increase the employee’s job-related skills.

A buddy program is all about providing a one-point of contact to learn all about the operationally necessary information. In brief, the development of the individual is not the main expected output.

Who is the “Buddy”?

A “Buddy” is usually an existing employee who has worked at your company for a while and has a certain degree of knowledge about your company culture and orientation needs.

The characteristics of a good “Buddy”:

  • An experienced employee who has been at the company for a minimum of 1 year.
  • Well-regarded and accepted by current employees.
  • Can be from a different department of the new employee.
  • Demonstrates a strong performance in their current role and has a basic understanding of the new hire’s role.
  • Has patience and strong communication and interpersonal skills.
  • Has the willingness, ability, and passion for mentoring others.
  • Willing to involve the new employee in social activities, such as lunches, coffee breaks, and informal outings. 

Why should you introduce a Buddy Program?

Building relationships is key to fostering a healthy and productive work environment, and by establishing a buddy program, your company and employees will enjoy multiple benefits:

  • The new employee will be able to add value more quickly, leading to increased confidence and self-esteem.
  • Improved business performance, profit, and staff morale.
  • Orientation doesn’t cover everything, but with a buddy program, new hires will be able to learn more about the company’s unwritten rules.
  • It has been proven that having friends at work increases engagement and retention.

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