Accessibility is building a web site and operation to make web content and applications available to the broadest possible audience, browsers and devices. A strategic objective is to minimize the operation, maintenance and rework costs. The requirement to implement accessibility can be driven by business, policy and external requirements. The business requirements may be driven by business development, marketing, or sales and may include the loss or potential opportunity revenue, a change in customer needs, and new technology directions. Policies and external requirements may be Federal, State or local Government laws and industry or corporate standards. Once a strategic decision is made to scope the level of effort, the deployment will need to be translated into to operational requirements with costs applied. The costs will include training, design, quality assurance or test processes. The impact to current projects will also need to be assessed.
There are several conditions that will determine implementation strategy and costs. Implementing accessibility may involve just operations or both business and operations. The key to implementing universal accessibility is to realize economies of scale where business and operational changes can be incorporated. This can be accomplished by
∑ Specific regulatory timeline (enforcement dates).
∑ Incorporation into current redesigns proposals (information and project schedules)
∑ New web applications
∑ New business requirements or strategy
∑ Technology implementation choices (Applets, Flash, Frames, Client vs server, etc.)
∑ New operational (Incorporation into current hardware, software or infrastructure upgrades
∑ Availability of tools and resources
∑ has been mandated then this may burden operations and a project assessment will need to be made. This may impact to current projects.
∑ Business costs associated with risks factors of liability
∑ Initial spike of costs verses maintenance costs. Short term costs verses long term costs.
∑ Additional accommodation costs for employees and customers if the accessibility requirements are not implemented.
Once a decision has been made to implement accessibility, the next decision is when to implement and this will be driven by the requirements timeline.