The 11 Steps in my A11y Journey

Have you ever wondered how accessible the application you’re working on is? Do you know how to find out how (in)accessible it is? Where do you even start with getting buy-in from your team to fix it? Where do you start fixing it once you have that buy-in?

I asked myself all of these questions when I started my new job. I joined a new team and I was eager to jump into accessibility work. I knew our mobile app was not accessible. I knew we needed to fix it but the task seemed massive. I had no buy in from my team. People didn’t think we needed to do the work because they’d had no complaints from users about accessibility. I had to win the team around and build a justification for investigating the work. I built my case on the legislation we needed to comply with and high profile court cases to demonstrate the risk if we didn’t.

Once I had buy in from the team, we worked together to explore how we could possibly approach the problem. We looked at how people interacted with our application. We identified key user journeys through our application. We broke those user journeys down into the screens and actions involved to take a journey from start to finish. Finally, we prioritised those journeys based on business impact.

Together, let’s explore the 11 steps I took with my team to building accessibility in within 3 months. We’ll look at

  • How to frame the proposal to your team to do the work
  • Ways to break the approach down into manageable sized pieces of work that deliver value at every step
  • Why we chose the user journeys we worked on

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the talk you will:

  • Have the resources to propose accessibility work in your own team
  • Know how to advocate for people who might not be your users…..yet
  • Be able to explain the importance of building accessibility into your products

Attendee Reviews

Insightful and hands on real life topic. One of the best talks.

This was my favourite talk at ATDOA2023. Super important topic and the way it was delivered made it feel and sound fundamental instead of optional, and at the same time achievable with concrete tips on how to go about this with your own team and product. Amazing delivery, good slides, would recommend.

Great experience sharing. Brought me more awareness of a11y overall! Would try this in my projects