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HiPeople's Dr. Jantje H. de Vries on BESSI

Mikaella McInerney
October 28, 2022

✨ HiPeople's very own Dr. Jantje de Vries explains why it is important to find out about a candidates’ soft skills and what’s the scientific approach behind measuring soft skills with HiPeople Assessments

New to hiring? No problem!
This article is the hiring 101 that will help you to hit the ground running.

What are Soft Skills?

People differ in their social, emotional, and behavioral skills. These skills are often referred to as Soft Skills. Soft skills are interpersonal skills that characterize a person's relationships with other people

In the workplace, soft skills are considered to complement hard skills, which refer to a person's knowledge and occupational skills. 

Soft Skills like, for example, Social Engagement and Cooperation Skills can help people maintain satisfying relationships and attain a higher social status.

How do we assess soft skills at HiPeople?

At HiPeople, we assess Soft Skills with the Behavioral, Emotional, and Social Skills Inventory by Soto and colleagues (2022) (short: BESSI).

The BESSI is a comprehensive, reliable, valid, and efficient measure of social, emotional, and behavioral skills.

 It measures five major skill domains, which quickly summarize someone’s soft skills:

  1. Self management skills
  2. Cooperation skills
  3. Social engagement skills
  4. Emotional resilience skills 
  5. Innovation skills

Across these five domains, the BESSI measures 32 specific skill facets: These could be for example:

  • Leadership Skill: Measures the candidates' ability to assert their views and speak in a group or
  • Energy Regulation: Channeling energy in a productive way

Each module of the bessi contains 6 likert-scale ratings. The time to conduct the soft skill inventory depends on how many modules you choose.  

👉 At HiPeople we ensure to put a considerable amount of time and energy to ensure the tests we provide are reliable and valid. Give it a try today, sign up for a free trial.


Want to find out more about the scientific background? Check out this paper by Soto and colleagues:

Soto, C. J., Napolitano, C. M., Sewell, M. N., Yoon, H. J., & Roberts, B. W. (2022). An integrative framework for conceptualizing and assessing social, emotional, and behavioral skills: The BESSI. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.


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