Key accessibility insights from Microsoft, Apple, Google, the BBC and many more

Digital accessibility has never been more important than it is today. Over the past two years, organisations of all sizes and sectors have embraced this fact and accelerated the learning curve towards embedding best practice across their teams, products and services - and we've endeavoured to bring those invaluable insights to you through a series of coffee-fuelled conversations.

In our 'Accessibility Insights' series we've interrogated many heroes of digital inclusion from across industries and around the world. Guests have included heads of accessibility from tech giants such as Apple, Google, Amazon and Microsoft, and from household names including Sainsburys, Barclays, Verizon Media and the BBC. Recordings, full transcripts and a list of attendee Q&As are available for every episode so please check out all the webinars to date.

We're pleased to announce that series 2 of our approachable Accessibility Insights series of webinars returns! Series two of Accessibility Insights so far has been joined by MicrosoftNetflix and Spotify. For the fourth and final episode, we were joined by David Padmore and Matt Simpson of ITV. Learn about accessibility on their new streaming platform, ITVX by catching up on the webinar recording

Google embeds accessibility at the core

Picture of Christopher Patnoe smiling at the camera during the webinar

In our chat with Christopher Patnoe, Head of Accessibility Programs and Disability Inclusion at Google, he emphasised the importance of having accessibility at the core of everything your organisation does. Within Google I’m lucky that accessibility is actually part of our mission statement; to take the world’s information and make it accessible and useful. He explained that, over the past few years, Google has really doubled down on building with people with disabilities, which I think is an important part of making products that resonate and meet needs.

Inclusion inspires innovation at Apple

Sarah Herrlinger smiling at the camera with a white backgroundSarah Herrlinger, Senior Director of Global Accessibility, Policy & Initiatives at Apple, explained; The best bit of advice we try to follow at Apple is understanding that inclusion inspires innovation. Essentially, you’re going to be in a better position to create something insanely great if you have expertise and input from people with a variety of backgrounds — and that includes involving people with disabilities in the development and design of a product. 

Sarah also spoke about the importance of an embedded culture of inclusion; It starts with culture. There needs to be a culture of inclusion and valuing both the needs and contributions of a diverse team. In addition, Accessibility is a value that is communicated and illustrated frequently across the organisation — both at the outset when joining Apple and then continuously during your career at Apple. This includes highlighting it through various employee training sessions … The biggest thing I've seen or really appreciated is being able to take accessibility out of the fringes and being able to normalise it into consumer products which has really been the core of what we've tried to do.

If we’ve learnt anything from the global pandemic, it’s that digital is even more important than ever. Prioritising inclusive design within your organisation is going to be key to producing products that are both accessible to those with more extreme needs, and extremely usable to everyone else.

More Accessibility Insights coming up

Let’s keep the momentum going. For the fourth and final episode, we were joined by David Padmore and Matt Simpson of ITV. Learn about accessibility on their new streaming platform, ITVX by catching up on the webinar recording. Why not help accelerate digital inclusion by sharing the webinar recording or this blog url with a colleague, family memeber or friend!

We'll be back in 2023 with a new line up of knowledgable guests from amazing organisations to gently grill, so please check out our Accessibility Insights page for updates, or sign up to our newsletter to be notified in your inbox.

Useful resources: