Most of us take for granted the ease with which we experience the world around us for granted; browsing a website or applying to a job online presents no real difficulties.
For the more than 61 million individuals with disabilities, however, using a staffing website that fails to comply with ADA standards can present very real challenges. A task as (seemingly) simple as searching for relevant jobs can be frustrating, if not impossible.
What Makes a Website ADA Compliant?
A website that adheres to ADA compliance guidelines must be:
In an earlier post, we explained these four qualities in detail. In practice, these characteristics translate into some pretty cool features extremely beneficial to users with accessibility issues:
While a difference in color alone may be enough for most people to distinguish hyperlinks, some groups of users (especially color-blind individuals) might have difficulty identifying them. According to WCAG 2.0 guidelines, color should not be the only visual indicator of a potential action; ADA compliant websites include other visual cues to identify links, such as underlining.
Keyboard accessibility is an essential aspect of web accessibility, as users with motor and/or visual disabilities frequently rely on a keyboard for navigation. Many staffing and recruiting websites, however, lack important accessibility features (e.g., a missing or inconsistent tab index, improperly structured navigation), which may cause skipping over menu items. ADA compliant staffing and recruiting websites integrate tab-through functionality with a properly structured tab index, allowing users to interact with pages predictably and successfully.
Compatibility with screen readers.
The majority of people who are blind, as well as individuals with learning or other physical disabilities, rely on screen readers to use their computers. To ensure all people have comparable access to your website, it should work seamlessly with screen readers and other assistive technology. Here are a few examples of compatibility features:
- Properly structured, consistent heading hierarchy. Organizing content headings with H1, H2 and H3 tags helps screen readers correctly interpret what content comes first, as well as which types of content are most important on a page.
- Providing text alternatives for non-text content. This allows screen readers to provide information about things like pictures, videos and graphics.
- Easily understandable, consistent navigation and labels. For example, multiple “overview” pages on a website can confuse assistive technology – and the user. All pages and elements on the site should follow a consistent structure, apply navigation rules uniformly, and be labeled accurately.
Need an ADA compliant website?
That’s what we’re here for! Haley Marketing has made a significant investment to ensure that all users of its website and Job Board products, regardless of their limitations or disabilities, have a great experience. All of our new Starter Websites, Custom Websites and Job Board (career portal) software products are more accessible for people with disabilities, while helping to keep our clients compliant with The Americans with Disabilities Act.
Please note: The information in this blog post is for educational purposes only; it should not be considered legal advice.