In a small saucepan, combine the barley with water to cover; place over medium heat and simmer 5 minutes.
Drain barley; set aside.
Heat the oil in a 4-quart saucepan over med-high heat.
Add in onion; cook/stir until begins to soften, 2-3 minutes.
Add in the beans with the liquid
Add broth; bring to a boil.
Decrease heat to med-low, cover the saucepan, and cook 15 minutes.
Using an immersion blender, puree the soup until smooth, or leave some chunkiness for texture if you prefer.
Add in the barley and place over medium heat.
When the soup comes to a boil, decrease heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally to prevent the barley from sticking, until the barley is tender, about 20 minutes.
Season with salt to taste, and serve