If you work for an organisation operating in the public sector, it’s critical that your website complies with the Public Sector Accessibility Regulations, which were published on September 23rd 2018.
As a result, every website developed for, or by, public sector organisations must now meet WCAG 2.1 Level AA accessibility standards, while also publishing an accessibility statement on their website.
The regulations were put in place to ensure that all websites used by public sector organisations are simple to navigate, particularly those with impaired vision, motor difficulties, cognitive impairments, learning difficulties and impaired hearing;
“Public sector websites should be perceivable, operable, understandable and robust.”
But what does that mean for you and your public sector organisation?
Making your website accessible isn’t just as simple as making content available, it means that the design and UX is clear and logical, so that even the most challenged user can interact without any stress or confusion.
It’s not just important for the people who need better accessibility, it’s better for everybody.
Not only will you see higher conversion rates and lower bounce rates, Google will also push your website up the rankings due to the ease of access you are providing to users.
However, as highlighted in A recent study by Socitm, most public sector websites do not currently meet accessibility standards, so changes need to be made.
Common issues include;
– Websites that can’t be navigated using a keyboard
– Inaccessible PDFs that can’t be read by screen readers
– Images that are missing ALT tags
– Poor colour contrast which makes text difficult to read
-Your website will meet requirements if it complies with the international WCAG 2.1 Level AA standard.
-You must publish an accessibility statement on your website to show that you meet requirements. Your compliance date could be as soon as September 23rd 2019, depending on when your website was built.
-If requested, provide an accessible alternative for content that doesn’t meet accessibility standards.
To help your organisation make these critical changes, Heavyweight Agency can deliver an Accessibility Audit to evaluate your website based on how well it supports the needs of users with specific challenges.
We’ll highlight the most important issues which require attention and provide examples of other websites which comply and deliver a truly accessible and compliant experience.
We audit against a range of industry standards, including WCAG 2.1 Level AA, using clear checkpoints and a combination of manual & automated checks.
We have worked with the UK Government on a number of projects already, ensuring all standards are met, so if you want to work with the best in the business, get in touch with our team today.