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What is Human Accessibility Expert Audit Services – Why & When This Service is Needed?

By: Skynet Technologies USA LLC
8 mins
500
Human Accessibility Audit Services
“Accessibility is not a feature, it’s a social trend.”
- Antonio Santos

In today's digital scenario, accessibility certainly has become a trend, and essential requirement for everyone. With billions of individuals worldwide relying on the internet for education, employment, healthcare, information, shopping, and entertainment, it's crucial that organizations offer accessible content to all, including those with disabilities.

The question arises: How can organizations ensure their websites or applications are truly accessible?

Well, to ensure web accessibility (as per WCAG standards), there must be a defined audit or testing process and when it comes to being compliant, human accessibility testing is paramount. Human experts provide a thorough analysis of each facet of the website or application ensuring the mandatory compliance necessities.

This article delves into the significance of human accessibility experts' audit services.

What Is Human Accessibility Expert Audit Services and Its Importance for Organizations?

A human accessibility audit, also known as a manual accessibility audit or expert accessibility testing, involves having trained accessibility professionals assess digital content, website, web application, or documents to help find accessibility gap and solution to fix accessibility for the people with disabilities. These audits are typically conducted by accessibility experts with expertise in accessibility guidelines, standards, and best practices, including those outlined in the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG).

The human auditors understand the process of auditing comprehensively and they may amend the process based on organizational requirements. However, expecting the same from automated tools is not possible. Additionally, human accessibility experts provide essential guidelines for addressing accessibility issues related to a several type of disabilities, including visual, hearing, cognitive, and motor impairments.

Automated accessibility testing may be quick and cost effective, but it not accurate and reliable and has limitations like detecting content screen reader compatibility, shopping cart checkout processes, multilanguage support, and popups. human accessibility audit is vital as it fills the gaps left by automated accessibility testing, ensuring that every element of digital content is accessible.

human accessibility expert audit services

So, briefly, human expertise in testing is irreplaceable when it comes to identifying and addressing priority issues based on WCAG 2.2 AA compliance guidelines.

Why Choose Human Accessibility Audit?

If a website owner gets confused between automated accessibility audit services and human or manual accessibility audit services, they must understand that automated audit is completely dependent on the insights generated by that tool/software. Automated accessibility audit tools are trained to identify certain WCAG (or other) accessibility standards and due to their limitations, they cannot identify all accessibility issues. While a human accessibility audit provides an in-depth evaluation of every single element targeting certain type of disabilities.

Unlike automated accessibility testing tools that might not be able to detect certain accessibility issues, human auditors bring empathy, understanding, and real-world perspectives to the evaluation, and identify barriers that algorithms may overlook. With human expertise, organizations can better address accessibility challenges, leading to websites that are inclusive and usable for all individuals, regardless of their disabilities. It not only ensures compliance with accessibility standards and regulations, but also enhances user satisfaction, improves positive brand perception, and expands the reach of the website to a wider audience.

importance of humana accessibility expert audit

Human accessibility audits are beneficial for all size organizations, particularly for e-commerce businesses, government entities at the state and federal levels, non-profit organizations, educational institutions, and large corporations aiming to reach cross-border markets and maintain a strong brand image.

What Web Elements Can Be Reviewed Through a Human Accessibility Audit?

Human accessibility audit service covers every aspect of a website for instance:

  • They ensure keyboard accessibility in terms of logical navigation order and all links are operable via keyboard.
  • Alt text along with correct meaningful description on all images.
  • Headings review to ensure the hierarchy and labelling of all headings and sub-headings.
  • Human auditors evaluate that multimedia has relevant captions and audio descriptions (wherever required).
  • Color contrast as per WCAG recommendations is also reviewed.
  • All forms and tables are checked to confirm their accessibility.
  • Links with descriptive text and focus indicators are part of human auditing.
  • The digital content has a similar orientation for mobile as well. Mobile accessibility is crucial to be checked.
  • ARIA (Accessible Rich Internet Applications) correct attributes for complex web elements should be there.
  • Certain images which are used for decorative purpose they can classify them as decorative images so screen reader can avoid or identify them.

When Does an Organization Need Human Accessibility Expert Audit Services?

A human accessibility audit can be conducted post-automated scan to get in-depth details of each element’s performance against accessibility standards. Eventually, every organization wants to provide a similar experience to all their users (regardless of their physical abilities).

human accessibility audit

An organization need human accessibility expert audit services in following circumstances.

  • Mitigating legal risk: To prevent accessibility lawsuits or legal action risk related to accessibility barriers and discrimination.
  • Escalate Compliant: To identify accessibility gap based on complaints received from individuals with disabilities who encounter difficulties while accessing digital information.
  • Ensure Compliance: To comply with accessibility standards and guidelines, such as Section 508, ADA, and WCAG 2.1 / 2.2.
  • Identify and fix accessibility issues: To identify accessibility barriers and fix them to make digital information or assets accessible to everyone.
  • Major website updates: To ensure accessibility compliance after significant website changes, including development updates, redesigns, upgrades, and maintenance.
  • Demonstrating commitment to diversity and inclusion: To showcase a commitment to accessibility and social responsibility, improve positive relationships with customers, employees, and stakeholders.
  • Improve brand reputation and perception: To enhance the organization’s reputation, leading to positive brand perception and increase customer loyalty.

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What Are the Pros and Cons of Human Accessibility Audit?

Now that it is clear how human accessibility audit is important for organizations. You must be wondering about its advantages and disadvantages.

Pros:

  • A website is checked against the latest WCAG success criteria to ensure its compatibility with modern assistive technologies and browsers.
  • This process has human judgment and more clear insights than automated tools.
  • Human accessibility auditors provide personalized solutions for each website instead of giving generic information.
  • It improves user experience by ensuring that all features and functions are working properly.
  • It enhances organizations’ market reach.
  • Human accessibility audit uplifts website SEO; since the more accessible the website, the better SEO results are.

    accessibility and SEO

Cons:

  • The process may take few weeks or more time depending on website size, and other factors.
  • It cost hefty compared to free automated accessibility audit tools or monthly subscription based automated accessibility testing tools.

Make sure your digital content is inclusive and accessible for all users by investing in human accessibility expert audit services . Our team of accessibility manual audit experts brings unparalleled expertise to identify and resolve accessibility barriers, ensuring compliance with section 508, ADA, or WCAG 2.0, 2.1, 2.2 standards and enhancing user experience for individuals with disabilities. Request a quote or reach out [email protected]