November 21, 2011 Articles

The ADA and Employer Websites

The growth of online recruiting and web-based job functions may pose barriers for individuals with disabilities, particularly individuals with visual impairments.

By Michael P. Goodwin – November 21, 2011

The Internet has revolutionized employer hiring and recruiting practices, with many employers posting job openings on their own websites or in online job banks. It goes without saying that Internet and web-based platforms have become essential to many job-related functions.

The growth of online recruiting and web-based job functions may pose barriers for individuals with disabilities, particularly individuals with visual impairments. Most visually impaired people who use the Internet do so with the help of assistive technology, such as software that converts textual and graphical information on a screen into speech or Braille. To be compatible with such programs, graphical information on the web must be coded with alternative text that allows the screen reader to describe graphics appearing on the screen. The site must also be navigable with a keyboard instead of a mouse and must provide adequate labels and prompts for online forms.

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