Project Description

Big Ben and Houses of Parliament

BASDA

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Ensuring Inclusive Design across Marketing Material

Accessibility Audit & Project

BASDA (The Business Application Software Developers’ Association) is a UK trade body representing and collaborating with the UK business software industry ensuring their voice is heard at the highest levels of UK government, policy-makers and industry media.

BASDA are committed to demonstrating a broader inclusivity agenda across the wider software industry and to supporting their members across this agenda. They recognised that it was essential, as a trade body, that they were not only aware and implementing accessibility standards but also actively communicating these with their members. This included compliance with WCAG 2.1 guidelines across all digital content.

BASDA recognised that they would need support to deliver this project and engaged All Things Web® (‘ATW’) to do a full review of their online presence, offer recommendations followed by implementation.

As well as the website, other marketing collateral such as Word and Excel documents, PDFs, PowerPoint presentations, video content and email templates were required to be reviewed and remediated as necessary.

BASDA logo
screenshot of BASDA website

Strategy

ATW broke the project down into two phases. Phase 1 consisted of a website audit to identify all elements of the site that did not adhere to the minimum accessibility standards.

Part of this audit involved running the site through some accessibility software, checking it across a range of accessibility requirements and functions. ATW collated the results and made recommendations of how the issues could be fixed and the timeframe required to rectify.

One of the biggest challenges faced was the colour schematic across the website which did not achieve the levels of colour contrast required under the Guidelines.  Whilst staying true to the BASDA brand the ATW team introduced an alternative colour palette which achieved the accessible colour contrast without effecting the look and feel of the overall brand on the website.

Another key element identified as missing was the lack of attributes for various elements of the website. These attributes make the site accessible to users who require assistive technology to access and navigate the site, such as screen-readers or those using keyboard navigation which outlines key actions and buttons.

ATW installed a dedicated accessibility plugin at the backend of the site which automatically resolved many of the issues and carried out some further manual changes to ensure compliance.

In addition, ATW recommended that BASDA invest in accessibility software to future proof and ensure that their website remains compliant.

The software is an AI based solution which constantly scans the website and implements any changes that may be required to maintain accessibility and inclusivity across the site without effecting the design, brand and content of the website itself.

The software also helped to create an accessibility statement which was tailored appropriately for BASDA.  This statement sits on their website for users to utilise and understand what BASDA have done to achieve accessibility as well as give them the platform to raise any queries regarding accessibility

The accessibility software that ATW installed shows as a widget on the front end of the BASDA website allowing users to select different profiles and adjusts the look, feel and function of the site to suit the user’s needs, without impacting it for other users.

Phase 2 was focussed on reviewing all other marketing collateral. The audit identified documents that required reviewing and updating to ensure they met the accessibility standards fully.

A formal review of the email marketing software was also conducted, and a number of recommendations were provided to ensure that inclusive design was built into future campaigns. To aid this a reference document was prepared by ATW which offers a useful guide and checklist for ease of reference.

The BASDA website does not utilise much video content currently but where it does ATW ensured that it met video accessibility standards including adding captions and transcripts.

Results

BASDA recognises that the journey towards being fully digitally inclusive takes time.  However, BASDA is complying with the WCAG 2.1 guidelines and ATW continues to work with BASDA to ensure any new collateral meets these standards.

ATW are committed to supporting clients on their inclusivity journey and have not only become a member of BASDA but also a member of a Specialist Interest Group dedicated to ‘Ability’. This enables ATW to further support BASDA and their members in the future growing awareness of this important agenda, giving practical advice and developing best practice methodologies on accessible content and a fully inclusive digital presence.

As a direct result of the project ATW were invited to present at the BASDA Annual Summit on a session with accomplished industry specialists which focused on ‘ability’ and the wider inclusivity agenda.

Image of accessibility tool on BASDA website

“We fully embrace the growing importance, demand and opportunity for businesses to adopt accessibility across their digital products, their communication with customers and how they conduct business.  We also recognised the need for BASDA to lead the way for its members and champion inclusive design. However, we needed to ensure that our own website and marketing collateral met industry standards and was fit for purpose.  ATW ensured that we became compliant in a short period of time and provided us with confidence that we are moving in the right direction in all that we do online.”

Kevin Hart, CEO & Executive Chairperson

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