Inclusion is an important principle in our work. We want everyone who visits our site to find it welcoming and straightforward to use. In particular we are mindful of:
Our use of language: we have tried to keep our language straightforward and as jargon-free as possible (bearing in mind that we deal in new technologies and there is a lot of jargon about!)
The look and feel of the site: we have chosen clean, bright colours with good contrast, with an easy-to-read font against a white background.
Information pathways: we endeavour to keep navigation routes simple and intuitive
Much of our work is in the field of digital mapping where the multi-layered, dynamic character of online maps presents particular challenges.
For this reason, digital maps are currently exempt from meeting the accessibility regulations for websites and mobile applications (in relation to public bodies). However, our digital maps do already incorporate some accessibility functionality and thinking. In addition to the principles outlined above, we pay attention to and/or incorporate:
Easy alternative route-finding: digital maps offer powerful scope for inclusive wayfinding – indeed this was an early motivation in their adoption. Wheelchair users and mobility-restricted walkers should find that they are able to route easily across the majority of our maps, avoiding steps.
Contrast: we are reviewing our colour choices going forwards to ensure that our map colour schemes achieve sufficient contrast to enable meaningful use.
User feedback: our maps have a user interface with built-in feedback features, enabling users to communicate map-based experiences directly.
Review and improvement
In relation both our website and our maps, we expect to be regularly engaged in efforts to improve the user experience and accessibility of our website and products over time, both in response to published guidance and your feedback. In working to ensure this, we are guided by the World Wide Web Consortium’s Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0.
In relation to our website and our maps, we are regularly engaged in efforts to improve accessibility and user experience.
Let us know what you think
We welcome your feedback. If you have any comments on how we might improve the accessibility of our SmartNE website or maps we are keen to hear from you. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org