September 18, 2020 Last updated September 19th, 2020 118 Reads share

How to Build a Team Responsible for Web Accessibility at Your Organization?

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Your organization is going through an agile transformation to match with the digital age and its accessibility requirements. Or you may be making your eCommerce website accessible to increase your sales. Whatever your reasons may be, you must have realized by now that web accessibility is a dynamic and ongoing process. Just like SEO techniques, online marketing, and any other digital operation at your organization, the world of website accessibility is always evolving to meet the requirements of different forms of disabilities. There to ensure that your business stays updated with the current web accessibility requirements, you must build a team that will be responsible for it.

Building such a team will present several challenges for you. So we have tried to come up with a few tips and tricks that can help you create your dream accessibility team.

Learn the Basics

When you are trying to make your online presence usable to people with disabilities, the first step is to learn the web accessibility basics. Whether you are from a business background or a software development background, you have to learn how disabilities present challenges for people to access and use anything on the internet. We would suggest that you get acquainted with assistive technologies, such as keyboard navigation, screen readers, head pointers, and such others. You can visit an organization where you can observe people with disabilities access the internet.

Once you know the challenges faced by your users living with disabilities, you will feel motivated to make things better for them. Website accessibility has several aspects so you can learn about the development and implementation of the solutions. It will empower you to understand the subsequent steps of building an ideal accessibility team. It will also enable you to sell executive support if necessary because you will be able to relay your experience and show them the advantages of implementing accessibility practices in your organization.

Create the Positions

Once you are familiar with the basics, you will know what qualities, disciplines, and expertise to look for in the team members responsible for accessibility at your organization. Your team should represent a diversity of abilities, ages, and cultures. These are some of the positions you can consider in your accessibility team.

  • Executives who will be able to support the accessibility program and oversee the guidelines
  • Project managers responsible for running the program smoothly
  • Developers who will provide codes to implement accessibility
  • Creators and writers who will be responsible for creating accessible content
  • Designers who will provide accessible interaction and enhance the user experience
  • Usability testers to ensure that the products are accessible to people with disabilities
  • Quality controllers who will ensure that the accessible website meets the standards of the organization
  • Human resources will be responsible for hiring and training team members without discrimination towards employees with disabilities. They must also ensure that all internal communication is accessible to everyone in the organization.
  • Legal team members to oversee compliance with the current legislation.

You can hire new team members for these positions or select from your existing workforce. Once you have created the team, we suggest that you let them experience the challenges of disabilities like you did in the first step.

Create the Guidelines

Once you have created the positions, you must collectively research and set the accessibility guidelines that need to be followed. Instruct your team that they need to update these guidelines according to the current law and regulations as they are always changing and evolving with time. Currently, your organization’s guidelines should meet the latest Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.1) as well as be ADA compliant. There are several other laws that you should also take into consideration when forming your guidelines, such as Section 508 of the Federal U.S. Government. If your online business has a global presence, you may want to consider the accessibility laws of Europe (EAA), United States(ADA Title 3), Israel (IS 5568), and other countries.

Test Your Digital Presence

Now you are ready to conduct your first assessment of your organization’s digital presence. Make sure that you test your online business pages as well as your internal communications for accessibility. The amount of time needed to complete the assessment will depend on the method of your tests. While manual tests can take a lot of time to complete, automated tests can be quicker. But keep in mind that not all web accessibility solutions and tests are created equal. So choose carefully when you use one to evaluate your online presence.

Building a team responsible for website accessibility can be immensely helpful for your organization. It will ensure that your accessibility standards are maintained, your company is safe from lawsuits, and the revenues will keep increasing.

Web Accessibility Icon On Keyboard -DepositPhotos

Jeffrey Corolla

Jeffrey Corolla

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