Behaviors to Achieve Accessibility Program Excellence

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In a previous article, I highlighted activities that I think help people become good (or better) accessibility managers through improving their objective accessibility knowledge. While the activities identified in that article will provide individuals with a baseline of objective accessibility knowledge, it’s the behavior patterns applied with that knowledge will make or break the success of your accessibility program. Here are eight behavior elements that I think are important for an accessibility program to achieve greatness.

Behavior Element #1: Recognize that you don’t know everything

Behavior Element #2: Set your accessibility destination before you get too far into the trip

Behavior Element #3: Adopt a process improvement program mindset

Behavior Element #4: Eat the elephant one spoonful at a time

Behavior Element #5: Build cross-functional respect

Behavior Element #6: Always look through your user lens

Behavior Element #7: Run accessibility tests independent of functional test cycles

1) If there are significant functional defects, progress in accessibility testing will be slow and painstaking (assuming it can be done at all)

2) Accessibility testing will have to be repeated once the major functional defects have been resolved because the fixes to the defects likely touch the code that you’ve already tested.

Also, functional QA engineers generally do not have assistive technology experience and thus are not qualified to perform accessibility testing.

Behavior Element #8: Innovative solutions are not only OK, they are desired

Conclusion

Blogger, disability advocate, nerd. Bringing the fire on ableism. A11y Architect @ VMware. Wheelchair user w/ a deaf daughter. CS, Law, and Business background

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