Online application systems can pose a major barrier to individuals with disabilities if they’re not designed correctly, according to a recent webinar offered by the Job Accommodation Network (JAN). Many web developers have no idea that their beautiful web designs pose frustrating obstacles to applicants with visual, hearing, mobility, or cognitive impairments. For example, if someone with a visual impairment uses a screen reader program, and your website contains images that aren’t descriptively labeled in hidden text (“ALT-tags”), the individual will be told there is an image, but that’s all. As an employer, especially if you are a federal contractor with affirmative action obligations, you should consider options for eliminating or at least reducing obstacles to applicants with disabilities.
The March 24, 2014, effective date of the new affirmative action regulations on veterans and people with disabilities is fast approaching. For federal contractors, this means that the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) will be scrutinizing employers’ efforts to recruit and retain individuals with disabilities, as well as protected veterans. Make sure your own application systems aren’t preventing qualified people from finding your company and applying for your jobs. Questions about the new regulations? Contact your Vigilant affirmative action representative.
This website presents general information in nontechnical language. This information is not legal advice. Before applying this information to a specific management decision, consult legal counsel.