Throughout LRI'S website – the following terms are used interchangeably: Workforce readiness skills, workplace success skills, soft skills, employability skills, interpersonal skills, workplace behaviors, behavioral competencies, social skills, career readiness skills and behavioral effectiveness skills. Skills and competencies are also used as synonyms.

Workforce Readiness Skills (WRS) with Demo

The following video simulation is typical of a situation that arises in entry-level jobs..

The following table presents a way of thinking about the knowledge, skills and abilities required of any job. It identifies the three sets of competencies required for success in the workplace. LRI’s expertise is in behavioral – or soft skill – competencies.

Workforce Readiness Skills (WRS) is an employer-validated and simulation-based soft skills assessment program that measures the competencies required by employers for a wide range of first jobs. The program identifies both the competencies and the developmental needs of individuals assessed. When skill development is needed, strategies are identified to support the attainment of those skills. Because of its validity, WRS is also used in support of hiring and promotional decisions.

Industries and sectors offering first jobs for people with WRS skills include:

  • Hospitality, fast food and hotel positions
  • Retail sales
  • Health care
  • Grocery/supermarket
  • Office/clerical and administrative
  • Call centers

WRS modules measure the following broad skills:

Module 1 - Personal Qualities System (PQS)

  • Integrity
  • Responsibility
  • Self-esteem
  • Self-Management
  • Sociability

Module 2 - Customer Care System (CCS)

  • Customer Relations
  • Decision-Making
  • Commitment to Quality
Module 3 - Workforce Technology Survey (WTS)
  • A selft-assessment tool that compares individuals' view regarding the use of social media at work with those of employers.

The Competencies Measured by WRS and a process to determine which competencies are of greatest importance to local employers is described here. How this process enables workforce professionals to better serve employers is outlined is expanded upon here.

Developing WRS soft skills

  • The WRS Feedback Report, which is the basic product of LRI’s assessment process, clearly identifies soft skill strengths and provides suggestions for creating individual or group Development Plans to address deficits. LRI also provides guidance to assist teachers and staff in communicating to those assessed their assessment results.
  • The on-line version of the Workforce Readiness Skills (WDS) program offers assessed individuals a computer-generated Development Plan based upon their Feedback Report.
  • The on-line WRS also provides simulations that individuals can complete to support their soft skills development.
  • LRI provides on-site training, Implementation Training and Development (ITD) that, in part, trains managers to create Individual Development Plans for assessed workers. ITD ensures that workers/learners and their managers/instructors are in agreement as to developmental activities; managers receive practical, hands-on experience that enables them to help workers develop soft skills over time.
  • LRI provides a Discussion Guide (click here for excerpts from the Guide) resource that can be used in support of development; it provides situations that can be discussed in classes or workshops led by workforce professionals. Guidelines for the facilitators/teachers ensure their familiarity with what employers consider to be best – and least effective – practice.
  • Tools are provided to support supervisors, mentors and others build individuals’ soft skills post-employment and during internships, apprenticeships or subsidized work experience.
  • LRI provides a curriculum, Personal Qualities Development System (PQDS) and Customer Care Development Skills (CCDS), to further support trainers and faculty seeking to offer workshops and other learning experiences that address the specific soft skills assessed by the Workforce Readiness Skills program.
WRS Content and Delivery Information

The WRS assessment modules are comprised of: Personal Qualities is 40 minutes of video during which the viewer responds to 28 work related questions; Customer Care is 37 minutes of video and 28 Questions. Personal Qualities and Customer Care tapes are recorded in English and Spanish; open-caption in both languages is available. WRS can be delivered over the Internet and via DVD.