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YOUR MONTHLY WEB ACCESSIBILITY UPDATE

July 2020

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Good afternoon <<First Name>>,

It's a beautiful and warm day here in Perth- we hope wherever you are that you're keeping safe and healthy amidst all that's going on. My apologies that this newsletter is a little late, my personal circumstances landed me in hospital for a few weeks but now on the mend and hoping to keep you updated with all that's happening here at Web Key IT and in the land of accessibility.

- Emma Murray

 

Embracing change and moving forward

9th of July by Dr. Vivienne Conway
Greetings all! 

I hope that like me, you are entering the new financial year with optimism and renewed energy.  The new financial year always feels like the first day of school used to feel when I was a child.  It is an opportunity to review how the past financial year performed and make new and better plans for this current one.

At Web Key IT, we have decided to make some really big changes.  Our company commenced operations in 2011, which makes us 9 years old!  I often remind people (including staff and family) and that I am not 21 years old any more – as if there was any doubt!  My health has been a little rocky over the past few years and I have finally decided to take a further step back and let my very able staff do their jobs with less interference from me.  I will still be here, as Director, but the management of the day to day operations will be managed by Amanda Mace and Emma Murray. 

Amanda Mace has accepted the promotion to General Manager and will be in charge of the work for our clients, and managing the day to day operations of our Digital Analysts and our Usability Analysts.  She has always done a superb job and I am sure most of you are very used to seeing her in this type of role.

Emma Murray is now the Administration and Human Resources Manager.  It is Emma who manages to get our staff paid and looked after and ensures our clients are invoiced and supported in their work with us. Emma has been our Administrator for a number of years, but has also looked after many other functions such as the HR role, and now we are able to recognise her in this official promotion.

Both of these ladies have my full endorsement.  They have been with Web Key IT for many years and are very deserving of these promotions. I am incredibly proud of them and the rest of our staff.  We have added quite a few new staff over the past two years and feel that they all do a superb job. As usual, you will hear from them individually in the newsletter where they get a chance to discuss aspects of digital accessibility from their own perspectives.

Please join me in wishing Amanda and Emma congratulations on their promotions. Web Key IT looks forward to our continued working relationship with all of you.

Together, let’s continue to unlock the Web!
 
Kind Regards,

Vivienne

Recent News Newspaper icon

 

5-Day Certificate in Digital Accessibility

When: Every Monday in August, 2020 (3rd, 10th, 17th, 24th, 31st)
Where: ATI Mirage, Cloisters, Level 1/863 Hay St, Perth WA
Time: 9:00am – 4:00pm
Cost:

  • $3250 per person (excl. GST) includes all learning materials, lunch, and morning & afternoon tea
  • 2nd person from same organisation $3,000 (excl. GST)
  • 4 people from same organisation $2700 each (excl. GST)
  • ACS Members – discount of $100 ($3150 each)
  • Discount for WALGA Members of 5% ($3088 each)

*NEW* From the General

 

It’s been a busy month at Web Key IT as our fearless leader and Director, Dr. Vivienne Conway steps back to enjoy the country life down South in the gorgeous beach side town of Hopetoun. Meanwhile, I very humbly step into the role of General Manager. I’m looking forward to this new role and continuing to work with the greatest team in the world! From this month onward, you’ll notice a new segment, from me, in our newsletter titled “From the General”. Each month I’ll aim to bring you updates about what is happening at Web Key IT and in the world of Digital Accessibility. With no further ado, here is your first instalment of “From the General”.

As Australia and the world continue to adjust to the ‘new normal,’ many have been challenged in traditionally rigid environments to become flexible and agile. I suspect in fact, that these are currently the two most used words in the English vocabulary. You could be forgiven for thinking, all this need for flexibility would translate to more chaos and potentially leaving people with disabilities behind in the rush to adjust on a, sometimes, daily basis. However, for businesses which were flexible and agile to begin with, although COVID-19 is certainly scary, the constant adjustments are not. Flexible working hours, work from home arrangements, easy to use, accessible intranets, portals and virtual desktops are beneficial for nearly everyone in a post COVID-19 world. For people with disabilities these practices have always made a significant difference.

I often speak about the importance of being flexible in design and development of new digital products. This means considering assistive technologies, such as screen readers and alternate keyboards, as just another kind of device like we do a mobile phone, tablet or desktop. If we design with more a flexible mindset we can be responsive to differences in people and situations as well as devices. And that, in this time of a pandemic, is of particular need. 

As we move into the new financial year and hopefully a better, healthier last half of 2020, we have some really exciting upskilling opportunities available in the next couple of months. The live webinar course we launched last month has run again in July, wrapping up this morning. Based on interest we’ll continue to run this course on a regular basis. These sessions cover the basic principles of web accessibility and teaches 16 easy steps for checking a webpage against several WCAG Success Criteria. It is a great introductory course.  The time commitment is fairly minimal: 45 – 60 minutes in the morning for the live webinar for just one week. Assignments are made available following each session, which reinforce the principles and/or testing techniques taught that day. All the assignments have a due date of 2 weeks following the last live webinar.

The other training opportunity is our very popular 5 Day Certificate in Digital Accessibility course which will run again August.  This is an in-depth course, occurring once a day over 5 weeks for an entire day (each Monday in August). In addition to web accessibility standards, testing methods and principles, it provides guidance in creating and testing digital documents like PDF and Word documents, specific screen reader training and mobile accessibility testing, as well as the development of an Accessibility Action Plan for your organisation.

We’d love to see you see at either or both of these fantastic courses. If you’d like more information these or our other training opportunities, drop us a line at training@webkeyit.com.


Amanda

Upcoming Events  Calendar icon

 

Web Key IT 5-Day Live Webinar
13-17 July 2020
Online
9:00-10:00am every day
Register & find out more here

Perth Web Accessibility & Inclusive Design Meetups
21st July 2020
Dome Cafe, Northbridge, WA
7:30-9:00am
Read more about the Accessibility Meetup group

UX Australia
25th-28th August 2020
Online
More information here

Web Directions (Code)
4th-25th September 2020 (every Friday)
Online
More information here

Toronto Accessibility Conference (#aLLyTO)
21st-24th October 2020
Online
More information here

Web Directions (Product)
6th-27th November 2020 (every Friday)
Online
More information here
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