The CAO (CLA) Gehandicaptenzorg app
How can visually impaired and blind employees also easily access their employment conditions? The Stichting Arbeidsmarkt Gehandicaptenzorg (StAG) asked us to make the CAO Gehandicaptenzorg app fully accessible for this group of employees so that they can also easily access, search, and use the collective labor agreement texts, FAQs, and tools.
Bas van der Schild is an HR advisor at Koninklijke Visio, an expertise center for people with visual impairments. Because he is blind, he uses VoiceOver, a screen reader built into his iPhone. In his daily work, the ability to search through the CAO Gehandicaptenzorg is extremely useful. The app was not yet accessible, and Bas reached out for assistance.
With the assistance of Timon, the accessibility expert, Bas from the HR department, and Jesse, an HBO ICT student and experienced tester, we systematically adapted all aspects of the app for both iOS and Android. Both platforms operate differently and have their own way of reading out texts and functions.
How do apps work in practice when you are blind? This week, Timon and Jesse from Visio came to visit. Jesse showed us how the smartphone is an essential tool in his daily life. WhatsApp? No problem: Jesse can send messages quickly by typing Braille commands on the touchscreen (see photo) or by dictating messages. And he reads incoming messages at a high speed with VoiceOver. In some cases, photos can even be recognized by VoiceOver through Artificial Intelligence, but it’s better if people provide a brief description alongside the photo.
We were happy to hear that the CLA app is now usable for Bas. In practice, many apps unfortunately still aren’t (properly) accessible for people with (visual) impairments. Fortunately, technology is increasingly providing wonderful opportunities to make apps inclusive for all users. The knowledge in the field of accessibility that we have built up with the help of Visio in the past period is something we will incorporate into our app development, and we look forward to being able to implement the new possibilities!