Putting People First: Addressing Accessibility in Document Management

Part 1 of 2: Addressing common historical challenges

By Grant Bifolch

The world of technology and business is evolving faster and faster every day. With this evolution comes better digital connectivity and collaboration options—allowing for better access control, centralized storage options, audit trails, streamlined search and retrieval, and much more. This forward progression is changing the way organizations function around the globe and is allowing businesses to reach new heights. 

Meanwhile, this increasing reliance on digital connectivity comes with a responsibility for organizations to ensure that the accessibility of every individual is a priority. While technology can make life easier in many aspects, the nuance of the human experience can often be lost. Further, when we don’t consider the accessibility of every individual user, we end up inadvertently excluding a segment of the population. 

Equitable accessibility is crucial not just because it is a legal requirement—but also because it is the right thing to do.  Moreover, assistive technology, for the most part, works very well. On occasion, however, if certain documents or file types don’t meet accessibility requirements, assistive technology may be unable to perform its function correctly. 

In response to the aforementioned challenges, we are seeing more organizations shift toward a more people-centric approach. More and more companies are prioritizing the human element and putting their people first. By adopting people-focused systems and platforms, companies are better able to ensure equitable accessibility and a positive user experience for every individual. 

Successful organizations now understand that their people are crucial to success. So how do you put people first? It starts with ensuring equitable access to all vital documents and systems.  By ensuring vital documents meet accessibility standards, you will be better able to invest in your people’s well-being, experience real growth, cultivate strong leaders and guarantee long-term organizational success. 

It is imperative to remember that the experience of your applications for each user is not the same.  Considering the accessibility of human experience is crucial to organizational success and harmony. Ensuring that the usability of business systems is simple and accessible to prevent frustrations and inadvertent discrimination starts with understanding the power of putting people first. 

So, how can you ensure accessibility in your daily business systems? Many organizations are seeking out platforms that meet accessibility standards to ensure that their documents are inherently current with modern accessibility standards,  This includes making sure that PDF documents are both highlightable and searchable, ensuring that visuals have alt text and videos have captions and that documents have headings and proper structure. 

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