The leading enterprise investment firm is on a journey to better accessibility and a more inclusive online experience for their primary corporate website. Yet, with a hard deadline and the redesign project underway, the Web Operations team has pivoted quickly to incorporate accessibility best practices into site design, development, and testing without compromising quality or their committed delivery date.
“Integrating digital accessibility into our culture and processes has been key to our success,” says the Web Manager at the firm. Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DE&I) are core tenets in our corporate culture, so pursuing better accessibility was a strategic fit—but the company lacked a shared definition of digital accessibility and alignment on how best to achieve it.
“We needed a partner like Level Access who is well-respected and seeks to understand our company’s vision and challenges. I had worked with Level Access before and had a fantastic experience. Level Access gets it! They recognize corporate pressures and priorities and still help us achieve better accessibility with very little friction or disruption to our business.”
The team quickly onboarded Level Access, expanded beyond the company’s overlay efforts, and established an interdepartmental team of accessibility stakeholders across the company. Representatives from IT, Creative, Content, UX Design, Web Operations, and others came to share best practices and standardize their definition of accessibility. Feedback from Level Access would flow to this team first, who would in turn facilitate tasks within their departments for on-the-job accessibility training while resolving issues.
“The challenge was never getting team support; it was incorporating a new priority into an active, high-profile project,” says team leadership. “Level Access tools and support helped make that happen! The AMP prioritization model is just one example.” The Level Access Accessibility Management Platform (AMP) not only identifies accessibility issues but prioritizes them with an overall rating based on severity, noticeability, and tractability (level of effort to fix) for guidance on which risks to address first for maximum impact. The team is now addressing Critical and High-rated issues right away as non-negotiable deliverables for the new site launch with Medium and Low-rated issues addressed in turn. Yet, they recognized that many of the identified issues were preventable when accessibility is considered upfront.
The Web Operations team immediately incorporated accessibility into the Design process—reviewing wireframes, auditing site content, and more to proactively identify issues before reaching development and production. The result? Fewer Critical & High-level issues are found in live testing today, and fewer more as the interdepartmental teams adopt and employ best practices. This “shift left” mentality, in combination with routine testing and issue prioritization, is already yielding results. “We’re currently addressing website issues found during use case and module testing—and already seeing improvements in our accessibility score!”
The firm’s corporate culture is rich in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DE&I) and growing stronger in its deployment of accessibility best practices. “There is no magic bullet for accessibility. It is an ongoing journey!” says the Web Manager. “I really appreciate that Level Access is a true partner, advisor, and coach—and not some cookie-cutter provider telling me things I could find on the internet myself. Level Access knows how to listen and translate my needs into tailored solutions and alternatives.”
The enterprise investment firm plans to deploy Level Access training to further educate staff on the nuances of accessibility and continue its progress to becoming more self-sufficient with manual and automated testing. “The knowledge and know-how will come; but the team culture is priority #1! Accessibility is not just another thing we do; it’s part of what we do! It’s essential.” The firm is committed to improving their accessibility and prioritizing better usability for all users—including those with disabilities.
Comprehensive Accessibility Management Platform with JIRA integration.
On-demand consulting and support.
Evaluating accessibility and compliance and developing a clear remediation strategy.
Real-world testing of core scenarios in your end user experience.