Last week I was given the great privilege of supporting the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) by continuing to upskill its staff through the delivery of three workshops across three cities over three days.
The workshops were designed in consultation with ATO staff to support their internal marketing and communications, IT, design and content teams, focusing initially on the personal journey of disability then expanding to look at the user experience more broadly. The focus then shifted to how content can be prepared to ensure effective messaging for people with disability through the provision of accessible web, document and game accessibility requirements.
The three workshops held in Brisbane, Canberra and Melbourne respectively featured lots of great discussion relating to the experience of using a screen reader for the first time, the importance of captioned video content and discussion on how to create an accessible game using multiple control mechanisms. As a result of the workshops, the teams will continue to maximise accessibility whether that be from a marketing & communications, IT, design or publishing perspective, so that it can continue to make its community engagement and in particular ato.gov.au as effective as possible.
The opportunity to deliver the three workshops resulted from the ATO’s earlier commitment to internally transition to the new WCAG 2.1 standard. It is hoped that other government departments will follow the ATO’s lead by strengthening its messaging processes for the mobile web and beyond.