Accessibility is the industry term for making websites or other systems usable by people with disabilities, who often rely on assistive technology, such as blind users who rely on screen readers. While many of our clients are required to create accessible systems either because of legal regulations or organizational policy, we encourage everyone to consider accessibility for any project. To this end, accessibility requirements are covered in every project’s discovery and planning phase.

 

"Web accessibility means that websites, tools, and technologies are designed and developed so that people with disabilities can use them.” — W3C, Web Accessibility Initiative

 

While not yet a uniform legal requirement for all websites, accessibility is a requirement for many government websites and many organizations are making accessibility an internal requirement to avoid potential legal liability, to extend their audience, or because it is the right thing to do.

Unfortunately, there is no “check box” to make a website accessible. Just as there are many potential disabilities (e.g. visually disabled, hearing impaired, cognitively impaired, motor impaired, etc.), there are many sorts of assistive technologies that users with disabilities employ to access websites.

Accessibility is more than just technical implementation, it’s a philosophical approach well summed up with the POUR acronym which stands for Perceivable, Operable, Understandable, and Robust (you can read more about the POUR principles here).

Whether you are concerned about limiting your legal liability, want to reach the broadest possible audience, or have an organizational commitment to equal access, we can help with creating and maintaining an accessible website.