Training Top 125 Best Practice: Hayes Locums’ Nest Week

This additional week of onboarding includes advanced prospecting, peer-to-peer knowledge exchange discussions, role-play scenarios, and live calls in the training room.

Locum tenens staffing and recruiting agency Hayes Locums extended its onboarding program with “Nest Week,” which aims to increase its sales consultants’ physician recruiting efforts within the first 30 days of employment and graduate each sales consultant as “desk ready” before running their own desk.

The training applies to all new sales consultants and sales managers. The company has trained 111 companywide since November 2018.

Program Details

Before 2019, Hayes Locums only had five days of onboarding that primarily featured lecture-based PowerPoints explaining the company’s sales cycle. Reviews and feedback from sales consultants revealed they wanted more prospecting, sales communication, and pre-screen training before they started to cold call providers.

In response, the company added an additional week called “Nest Week” to its onboarding. This additional week includes advanced prospecting, peer-to-peer knowledge exchange discussions, role-play scenarios, and live calls in the training room.

Each morning starts with communication warm-up sessions, and then trainees work through Hayes Locums’ “Role-Play Handbook.” This handbook consists of communication tactics, objections and responses, and provider scenarios that lead to one-on-one role-plays between the new hires. Role-play supervisors (Learning & Talent Development team members, sales managers, and mentors) listen into the role-plays. During the sessions, as needed, the supervisors will stop and correct learner responses to make the pre-screen natural in conversation rather than a survey conversation. Trainees receive instructions on how to ask purposeful open-ended questions to understand pain points to strategize value propositions for each scenario. Each day, the scenarios and trainee pairing are switches up to ensure variety in the conversations, and trainers slowly increase the difficulty of each role-play throughout the week.

In the afternoons, trainees make live cold calls in the training room with support from Hayes Locums’ Training manager and Training specialist.

During Nest Week, sales consultants are able to meet and question Hayes Locums’ CEO, VP of Sales, VP of Business & Development, and COO to gain insight on how to be successful on the desk.

Short-term reinforcement for communication skills and prospecting is followed up with continued education that is progressive with trainees’ key performance indicator (KPI) production. Long-term reinforcement is reintroduced with role-plays with their managers for 10 weeks. The manager and trainees receive a “Role-Play Handbook” of 10 different scenarios to acclimate them to any locums situation. Also, at the six-month mark, employees role-play and go through peer-to-peer coaching.


Hayes Locums consultants are able to effectively prospect, cold call, and account manage physicians in five days. Trainees are able to mentor other new hires a month after going through Nest Week. They are able to recruit physicians for their own individual pipeline but also help out the team with producing doctors to close team deals.

The company’s goal for 2019 was to increase pre-screens by 25 percent for each sales consultant within 30 days of employment. Post-Nest Week, new hire sales consultants increased their pre-screening productivity by 28 percent.

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