Multiple stakeholders, funding issues, red tape and complex internal processes can combine to make universities a playground for indecision and stunted progress on any given issue. Read on to find out how design sprints helped the University College London make real progress on one of their digital transformation projects.
10 reasons to prioritise accessibility
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), over 1 billion people worldwide live with some form of disability.
But that won’t include those with situational impairments (things like being in a loud space, multi-tasking whilst holding a baby or being distracted), temporary impairments (things like having a migraine, broken arm, suffering a bereavement, or experiencing stress) or those with assisted digital needs (maybe reluctant or unable to use digital services).
As an account director at Great State I help both private and public sector organisations solve problems with people at the heart, and for me this starts with accessibility. My own neuro-divergence has lead to an intolerance for poor user experience both digital and IRL so I just want to make it easier to do better. It’s not about big budgets or big change it’s about building it in at a cultural level.
Considering accessibility is not just about ticking boxes or meeting minimum requirements — it's about embracing the principles of inclusivity, empathy, and equity.
Here’s 10 reasons why by making accessibility a priority, you create a more compassionate and accessible world.
Inclusivity and equity
Create an inclusive environment that values diversity and supports those with barriers.
Comply with legal obligations and avoid potential legal issues or penalties.
Enhanced user experience
Provide a better experience for a wider range of users, leading to increased satisfaction and engagement.
Increased customer base
Tap into a significant market segment and create opportunities for increased sales, customer loyalty, and positive brand perception.
Social responsibility and ethical considerations
Value and respect the rights and dignity of all individuals, regardless of their abilities. The more “people” do the more AI will learn and help to reduce bias.
Innovation and creativity
Create robust foundations and lead breakthroughs in technology, products, and services that benefit not just people with disabilities but society as a whole. Innovation doesn’t mean complicated; simplicity is the friend of both creativity and accessibility.
Positive brand image and competitive advantage
Demonstrate your commitment to inclusivity as a socially responsible and customer-centric organisation. By differentiating yourself from competitors it will attract a broader customer base, including those who specifically seek out accessible options.
Improved SEO and search rankings
More readable, navigable, and understandable by search engines. This can result in higher search rankings, increased organic traffic, and improved visibility for your website or online presence.
Long-term cost savings
Integrating accessibility from the start of a project, will reduce the need for retroactive modifications and redesigns. Additionally, accessible designs often benefit all users, reducing the need for separate accommodations and adaptations in the future.
Employee satisfaction and productivity
Early inclusion of accessibility guidelines in software development life cycles enables better decision making. Teams understand how and why to create better products and services. Reducing quality assurance time and iterations of corrections is not only cost effective but contributes to morale.
Getting over the fear of what might lay ahead is the biggest challenge with accessibility and starting the conversation can be the hardest part. Whether you are a small service owner or the web manager for huge digital estates I’ve worked with both so more than happy to have a chat.
Why do some technologies seem to explode into common use, while others - despite their hype - fade away? If innovation is a force for change, the opposing force is the emotional and illogical nature of humans. In any given innovation, what opportunity is there? Find out here.