Training Project Teams on Accessibility
A major healthcare insurance provider that had previously used SPR services to perform independent audits of several of its websites for compliance with Section 508 web-accessibility standards wanted to take matters to the next level. The client sought a holistic approach to web accessibility that would reach across all its public-facing websites, member websites, and portal websites.
SPR's Full Lifecycle Web Accessibility was the answer. SPR's approach of building accessibility into an application throughout the project lifecycle began with awareness of Section 508 standards and followed through with incorporating accessibility into requirements, designing for accessibility, adhering to accessibility coding practices, and testing for accessibility. The client project teams, including project managers, business analysts, developers and QA tester, received a customized, full day of training. The morning session covered the principles and standards for web accessibility along with a screen reader demonstration, so that class attendees could experience hearing a web page. The afternoon session reviewed the Section 508 standards in conjunction with a sampling of pages from the website that the project team supported. Specific coding practices were covered to address non-compliance issues.
Each individual on the project team gained insight into how their contribution helped achieve web accessibility. By experiencing firsthand one of SPR's blind web-accessibility testers using a screen reader, the project teams learned why accessible websites are critical for blind or visually impaired customers. Not only did the project teams improve their overall grasp of web accessibility, but they also fully comprehended the importance of embedding accessibility within all project activities—a crucial distinction.