Christopher Guzmán, President of our Unqork Access ERSG for people with disabilities, shares how his team is working both inside and out of the platform to ensure Unqork is accessible to everyone.
Only 2% of websites are fully accessible to people with disabilities.
“If we printed each one of those five billion web pages out on a piece of printer paper, they could stack to at least 100 kilometers, or 62 miles,” says Christopher Guzmán, Technical Trainer & President of Unqork Access—an Employee Resource Strategy Group (ERSG). “A stack that high would reach the beginning of space.”
Christopher’s session at Unqork Create discusses the importance of making all web content accessible. He also talks about how Unqork is made accessible to as many Creators as possible.
There are roughly five billion indexed web pages, meaning 4.9 billion of them (98%) are inaccessible to people with disabilities. Considering one billion people, or 15% of the world's population, experience some form of disability, 98% is a staggering statistic. “Accessibility, both physical and digital, is a civil right,” Christopher emphasizes.
There is a moral obligation to increase accessibility, but there is also a business case. How can people who use assistive technology to access software become your customers if your product doesn't support assistive technology in the first place? On the flip side, your greatest customers could also just happen to live with disabilities. An almost guaranteed way to drive a billion people to your competitors is to outright exclude them.
The first version of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines was launched in 1999. Since its inception, it has become abundantly clear that patches, plugins, and highlights (the “quick fixes”) do not work; or else more than 2% of web pages would be accessible.
Instead, accessibility needs to be a core part of your organization’s product conception and design. There's no overlay or plugin that will make your product fully compliant, and they do not work for mobile technology. Some even interfere with the assistive technology that users with disabilities already use.
Instead, accessibility needs to be a core part of your organization’s product conception and design. There's no overlay or plugin that will make your product fully compliant...
Unqork started with accessibility in mind for the products created for partners, clients, and their users. Unqork's inception is based around making code more inherently accessible via no-code. Here is what Unqork is doing to continuously improve accessibility:
Creating internal processes, documentation, and checklists based on Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, including accessibility guidebooks for internal marketing and writing teams
Drafting an Accessibility Testing Rulebook for quality assurance (QA) teams, recently updated for 2021
Performing accessibility audits to gauge compliance and uncover issues that need to be resolved
Establishing internal ERSGs like Unqork Access
Unqork Access is stood up by three pillars: (1) product, striving to make the platform and its products accessible by default; (2) internal engagement, pushing Unqork to be an even more inclusive, accessible, and supportive workplace; and (3) external engagement, communicating and working with external speakers and organizations to provide awareness, philanthropy, and community impact.
Watch the full session to learn Christopher’s other recommendations for building accessible applications.