In this week’s HoW Talent webinar, Giles was joined by Martin Robertson from Recite Me to discuss accessibility and inclusion for candidates applying for jobs online.
Recite Me is an accessibility and inclusion software company and Martin has managed the sales function at Recite Me for over 4 years. Recite Me software allows anyone visiting a website to view the content in a way which works for them. It includes options to change fonts, have the screen content read aloud, alter colour combinations, change the language and much more.
What Is The Difference Between Accessibility and Inclusivity?
Accessibility is linked to the world we inhabit but when it comes to websites or online platforms people think of WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) which are a very comprehensive set of guidelines around how you should build anything that is accessed online. For example, if you use an image on a website, you need to make sure it has an alternative text description included so a screen reader can read the text description to the listener. The colour combinations should be a high contrast ratio and you need to make sure things are labelled correctly, correct headings are used etc. These are just a few examples of making sure content is accessible online.
The WCAG guidelines have different levels: A, AA and AAA. It can be complex to achieve these for compliance levels but organisations should aim for their website to be AA compliant to 2.1 AA , which is the latest version.
Inclusivity is different altogether. It is possible to build a website that is WCAG compliant, but not inclusive. For example, a website which has a black background and white text may look beautiful, however some people who are colour blind may not be able to see the text. Some people with Dyslexia prefer different fonts, so the use of a specific corporate font may make it more challenging to read.
How Does Recite Me Help Organisations Make Their Website More Inclusive?
Recite Me enables visitors to a website to make their own choices around how they want to view the site. Someone does not need to be neurodiverse or have a vision issue, they may just have a personal preference and we enable that adjusted experience.
Do You Have Any Tips For Organisations Looking To Create A More Accessible And Inclusive Experience For Candidates?
Getting the basics right is really important. Do not overcomplicate websites and make sure you give visitors to the site as much choice as possible. Anything you can do online to help the person self-serve is of benefit. You should make the journey easier without visitors having to disclose their disability or preferences.
In a practical sense, people with neurodiversity really struggle with Image carousels so these should be avoided and try to think about the colour palettes that are used on the website. They will never be right for everyone but try to ensure you have a high contrast ratio.
Are There Any Social Media Sites That Are More Inclusive Or Accessible?
All social media sites take web accessibility seriously and all are probably compliant, but content is user generated so the user who uploads the content is responsible for making it accessible. Simple things such as including alternative text on an uploaded image will help.
What Other Benefits Are There From Including Recite Me On A Careers Website?
Candidates are more likely to stay on a website and view the content for longer if it is displayed in a combination that works for the user. You are more likely to encourage a more diverse group of candidates to apply and most importantly, they are getting a first impression of what you are like as an employer. Ultimately you are providing the best tools to support the candidate in applying.
Watch the video below on how at Jobtrain, we’ve made our candidate hubs easily accessible through the inclusion of the Recite Me integrated Accessibility Toolkit.
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