AODA simply means Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act. Your organization must have a web accessibility policy that makes your responsibilities unique. However, you may develop non-discrimination policies like equal opportunity or anti-harassment policies. But, having website accessibility is essential, too. Each day, blind and disabled users face information, goods, and services barriers. However, the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) designing sites with disabilities in mind has become more important than ever. You don’t know who will visit your website. Numerous people can land on your site. And some might be disabled. So, it’s highly necessary to reach them too. That will enhance your brand recognition. Thus, if you are considering AODA testing, ensure to check these Dos and Dont’s.
The Do’s and Don’ts of AODA Website Compliance
Before proceeding further with the testing, checking these do’s and don’ts is necessary.
1. Do Be Specific About How to Achieve Web Accessibility
Your policy must not depict that your site is only fully accessible. Or the software must refrain from mentioning only usable by employees with disabilities. Ensure to mention the standards and technical requirements about your digital properties.
For example, you can show that all web pages and appl will comply with the technical requirements of Website Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0’s (WCGA) Level AA. This accessibility level is universally acceptable. The World Wide Consortium’s Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) has developed this precise technical requirements.
You may also include WAI’s Authoring Tool Accessibility Guidelines (ATAG) requirements. These are best for web pages with comment sections, forums, or any other content type.
2. Don’t Take Web Accessibility Policy as Accessibility Statement
A web accessibility statement is a public proclamation. It depicts your commitment to online accessibility. On the other hand, a web accessibility policy deals with your organization’s internal decisions and processes.
You must not promote or regulate it among your customers and clients. It must be shared about relevant departments in your company. However, you can also distribute it while training, if necessary.
Thus, you can’t share certain confidential things. Your company’s details are highly confidential. A certain leak may lead to serious situations. Therefore, never confuse web accessibility policy with accessibility statement. Both are completely different.
3. Do Implement Your Policy Throughout Your Organization
Only your web developers must not be aware of the policy. Web accessibility might not be your marketing department’s cup of tea, which includes project managers, contractors, human resources, communication staff, executives, etc.
If they follow their own procedural documents, such things must include the web accessibility policy. Thus, it will always be taken into consideration no matter what they are working on.
Therefore, you must implement this policy all throughout your organization. Every document must include this policy. Doing this is necessary if you want to expand your business to a larger audience base.
4. Don’t Take a Negligible Approach
If you want your organization to follow and apply a web accessibility policy, then you must supervise or enforce it. For instance, how to determine if the new blog section or product pages are truly barrier-free?
Thus, your policy must explain how the web pages are routinely monitored. For example, a third-party accessibility partner can check this on a regular basis. As a part of your policy, visitors can submit feedback on any accessibility policy they encounter. Hence, you are left with who will address the feedback and how quickly?
Decide the sole person responsible for ensuring smooth website accessibility. Also, determine the consequences if it’s overlooked. However, if you skip these conversations, you can’t make concrete progress. Thus, ensure not to make a negligible approach. Be more serious about it.
5. Do Set Strict Deadlines
If your website and other digital properties are not currently accessible, try to set strict deadlines. Add the milestones you plan to achieve and the deadlines by which you will attain them.
For instance, if your site’s web page will meet WCAG 2.0 level by July and Level AA by December, ensure to make this a part of your policy. Deadlines will help you reach your goals efficiently.
Your team must follow the deadlines at any cost. In this way, all your web pages will become accessible at a rapid pace.
6. Don’t Miss Out on Third-Party Vendors
When developing technology from a third-party website, don’t ignore your website accessibility. If you do this, then you will risk re-introducing barriers that will exclude disabled people.
Your third-party vendors must be aware of the policy. The products you offer must meet or exceed the technical requirements. Besides, if you are not experienced in creating an accessibility policy, top web accessibility companies can give you a helping hand.
However, you must share updates regarding any policy you follow concerning web accessibility policy. Thus, don’t miss out on sharing any information with third-party vendors.
7. Do Ensure Proper Readability
Your site’s readable factor is highly important. Users with disabilities won’t stay long if the content is not readable. Your site must read properly with commonly used screen reading software.
You must check the compatibility. Try to do this by downloading free software or using your smartphone’s screen reader. If the screen reader detects any issue, you must immediately work on it.
Thus, ensure to check the readability and work on fixing things as soon as possible.
8. Don’t Forget to Remain Updated Always
You must review the website accessibility regularly and update it accordingly. Since it includes deadlines, you must check whether it has met the deadlines. Moreover, accessibility standards themselves change over time.
The newer version, WCAG 2.1, was just released last year. Furthermore, you may revamp your site. Thus, ensure that your web accessibility continues to cover these changes.
In a Nutshell
Every organization knows very well that if they don’t ensure accessibility, they may encounter legal or brand issues. By catering to the diverse needs of users with disabilities, you can provide them with a good user experience.
However, it is never too late to depend on an expert company for website accessibility. So, make your site accessible today and reach a wider audience base.