The Virtual Imperative: How No-Code Can Help Make Services Accessible to All

no-code, accessibility, virtual imperitive

The best business experiences are those everyone can participate in, no matter their ability. Unqork's Amar Vedula explores how no-code can help you build accessible digital applications.

 

Whether you’re developing applications for external customers or internal business needs, it goes without saying that you want to make sure your application can meet the needs of as many people as possible. 

In the face of COVID-19 and its accompanying social distancing and shelter-in-place mandates, this notion has taken on new meaning. Over the past few months, businesses of all sizes and types have scrambled to make their services accessible online during the pandemic. 

While the sudden rally towards digital is impressive, it raises an important question—why shouldn’t businesses make such concerted efforts to make accessible digital applications all the time?

Accessible for All?

Global pandemic or not, there are individuals who always face barriers to access when it comes to interfacing with companies offline. People with certain medical conditions or those who are immunocompromised, for example, might always face risks when interacting with others, not just due to COVID-19.

Watch this brief demo of how Unqork is helping companies return to work efficiently and safely. 

Consider a scenario many people would find simple or possibly even mundane—opening up a bank account. This might not be so easy for the 26% of American adults who, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, are living with a disability. Of those people, over half have a mobility disability that makes it difficult to walk or climb stairs. Another 5.9% of those people are deaf or have serious difficulty hearing, and another 3.6% have a self-care disability that makes it difficult to dress or bathe. Suddenly, getting up, getting dressed, and going to the bank to speak with a representative doesn’t seem so simple.

When it comes to conversations about accessibility, it’s important to remember that no two people have the same experiences moving throughout the world. As such, the baseline for accessibility in industries like finance and insurance should be ensuring that everyone, regardless of ability, can have their needs met and fully participate in a business’ services.

Increasing Organizational Outreach

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), first passed in 1990, has been amended and updated over the years to continually improve public and private access for those with disabilities. For example, in 2010, the ADA created certain standards that outlined new infrastructural designs to which local and state government facilities, commercial facilities, and public buildings would have to adhere.

In addition to making sure physical facilities are accessible to a wide range of people—including ramps, contact-free doors, and so on—organizations should also work toward making sure their services are accessible to those who can’t, don’t, or won’t physically visit their facility. 

While these standards represent an important accommodation, companies can take it upon themselves to do more. Accessibility for those with physical disabilities could be raised even further if all organizations made remote functionality a priority, if not a requirement. 

In addition to making sure physical facilities are accessible to a wide range of people—including ramps, contact-free doors, and so on—organizations should also work toward making sure their services are accessible to those who can’t physically visit their facility. 

As digitization becomes the norm, more businesses tend to create digital applications because they know their customers expect them. But much like the physical requirements set out by the ADA, there’s an important virtual imperative to consider here. Digitization can provide access to a much wider audience, and should be considered a mandatory accommodation as much as a smart business move. 

How No-Code Fosters Accessibility 

In our modern business environment, developing accessible applications should be a necessity, not a luxury. Virtual experiences not only increase an enterprise’s reach, they also make it possible for all of their customers to engage with their services. However, we at Unqork know how difficult traditional application development can be, with cost and time constraints often serving as a barrier to building digital applications. 

No-code makes digitization and accessibility possible for organizations across industries, from creating a quoting application to enabling couples to get their marriage licenses online. With templates for an incredible variety of use cases and drag-and-drop self-validating components, businesses can build custom applications to ensure they’re fulfilling a virtual imperative to serve as many of their customers as possible.

Of course, simply creating digital apps isn’t the be-all and end-all. To truly make accessible experiences, you also need to make sure you’re building user-friendly, intuitive applications that meet web accessibility requirements. In part two of this topic, we’ll cover the visual requirements you should consider to build powerful and accessible applications with Unqork. 

About the Author

Amar Vedula

Amar Vedula is an Account Development Representative with Unqork who helps agencies discover ways to use no-code to benefit residents and taxpayers. Want to learn more? Follow him on <a href="https://www.linkedin.com/in/amarvedula/" target="_blank">LinkedIn</a> or <a href="mailto:amar.vedula@unqork.com">shoot him an email</a>.

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