Building Your Accessibility Capability: In-house Skills vs External Suppliers

What are your options when you're building and enhancing your organisation's accessibility capability?

  • What's the right balance between building an in-house team with specialist skills versus using external suppliers?
  • Should you get the support to build a specialist accessibility team, or focus on embedding skills and knowledge across the organisation?
  • Do you want to de-centralise relationships with your key suppliers, or maintain contracts through one team? 

This free webinar shared the thoughts of experienced accessibility leaders from Deque, Skyscanner, the Ministry of Justice UK and Hargreaves Lansdown and help you assess the pros and cons of different approaches.

Watch the webinar recording

You can also watch the full discussion AbilityNet's Mark Walker had with Matthew Luken from Deque about building your accessibility capability.

Download the PowerPoint presentation for this webinar

Download a text transcript of Building your Accessibility Capability

Graphic of a person with a magnifying glass looking at a group of people with gears and a graduation capWho will benefit from this webinar?

The session was aimed at anyone who would like to learn about accessibility capability, including managers, operations and HR professionals, accessibility professionals, or anyone passionate about digital accessibility and inclusion.

The resources shared can be used to help anyone in your organisation:

  • Gain practical strategies to enhance your organisation's accessibility capability
  • Learn from real-world experiences and success stories
  • Access valuable resources and tools to kickstart your accessibility journey

Don't miss this opportunity to gain valuable insights into building and enhancing accessibility capabilities within your organisation. Watch the recording to stay ahead in fostering an inclusive and accessible digital environment.

Meet the Panellists

Charlie Turrell, Engagement and Champions Lead at the Ministry of Justice UKCharlie Turrell, smiling at the camera

Charlie is the Engagement and Champions Lead at the Ministry of Justice UK. In its pursuit of building capability, Charlie has played a pivotal role in establishing our Champions Network. Under her leadership, the Ministry of Justice UK implemented a comprehensive onboarding process, resulting in a thriving network encompassing individuals from various roles across the organisation. 

Charlie is also the co-founder of CAN (Champions of Accessibility Network) which brings together over 550 large digital organisations including Google, Microsoft and all major UK broadcasters and international on-demand service providers, with cultural inclusion programmes including an accessibility champions network.   

Matthew Luken, Vice President & Principal Strategy Consultant at DequeMatthew Luken smiling at the camera

Matthew Luken is a Vice President & Principal Strategy Consultant at Deque. Prior to Deque, Matthew built and ran U.S. Bank’s enterprise-level digital accessibility programme. He grew the programme from two contractor positions to a team of 75 consultants and leaders providing accessibility design reviews, compliance testing services, defect remediation consulting, and creating/documenting accessibility best practices across the company. The programme leveraged 1,500+ implementations of Axe Auditor and almost 4,000 implementations of axe DevTools and Deque University. Matthew was also Head of UXDesign’s Accessibility Center of Practice where he was responsible for creating seamless procedures and processes that supported the digital accessibility team’s mission & objectives while dovetailing with the company’s other Center of Practices like DEI, employee-facing services, and Risk & Compliance. He and his team’s work has been recognised by American Banker, Forrester Research, Business Journal, and The Banker. 

Profile image of Heather Hepburn smilingHeather Hepburn, Accessibility Lead at Skyscanner 

Heather Hepburn's mission is, "Let's make travel accessible to all and give everyone the same chance to enrich their lives through the joys of travel." 

Heather is a passionate accessibility evangelist who is leading the charge as the driving force behind the accessibility program at Skyscanner. In her role, she is not just introducing accessibility initiatives; she is instilling a cultural shift that integrates accessibility into the very fabric of Skyscanner's identity and operations. 

As a co-founder of the Champions of Accessibility Network (CAN), Heather has helped cultivate an active community of over 1,300 accessibility professionals from businesses worldwide. Through CAN, she facilitates collaboration and knowledge-sharing, further amplifying the impact of accessibility initiatives on a global scale. 

Find out more about Heather and her work when she partnered with AbilityNet to use our Digital Accessibility Maturity Model.

Zoe Portlock, Accessibility Lead at Hargreaves LansdownZoe Portlock, smiling at the camera

Zoe Portlock serves as the Accessibility Lead at Hargreaves Lansdown (HL). 

Drawing from her lived experience and professional background, she writes articles and provides consultations on Digital Accessibility. 

A passionate advocate for individuals with accessibility needs, Zoe is determined to guarantee that everyone enjoys the equal digital experiences they deserve. She actively contributes to AbilityNet round table events, emphasising the importance of inclusivity in digital spaces. 


This webinar lasted 60 minutes and included an opportunity to pose questions to the guests. The panel was able to answer many questions from attendees during the live session, which you can find by watching the webinar playback or accessing the transcript.

About our Accessibility Servcies

We have supported companies and organisations with their accessibility goals for over 25 years and have a range of services that includes accessibility audits, user testing, accessibility consultancy and training.

Talk to our team about your digital project and they’ll help you think about your options. 

Useful resources 

Useful links

Date of webinar: 
19 Mar 2024 - 13:00