Insights Blog Leading Credit Union Achieves Digital Accessibility Gold Standard

Case Study

Leading Credit Union Achieves Digital Accessibility Gold Standard

When this credit union discovered its web banking application needed much work to improve its accessibility on web and mobile, they set out to make it universally inclusive.

visually impaired mobile interface user
Overview
Challenges

Improve web banking application and accessibility.

Allow visually impaired use of web application online and on mobile for users with motor or agility impairment.

Solutions

Accessibility testing for compatibility with assistive technology on Windows, Mac, iOS and Android.

Web app tested for screen reader and speech synthesizer compatibility, and website for keyboard access.

Results

The Client achieved compliance with benchmark W3C/WCAG 2.1 web accessibility standards.

The credit union’s web application became fully accessible on web and on mobile.

Client overview

With 480,000 members, over $5 billion in assets and almost a thousand employees, the Client is a leading US credit union. It offers a full range of financial services through a digital platform. To provide these services to their members, this credit union has already added digital channels with an established and highly secure website as well as a robust mobile application.

Turn-key digital banking app required accessibility enhancements

The Client was using an off-the-shelf digital banking application which they have significantly modified with internal developments to add functionality.

Our review uncovered many components that were not fully accessible to people with disabilities, including multi-level-authentication (MFA) functionality that was completely blocked for Voiceover users on the iOS platform.

There was no way for motor impaired users to log into the web application due to a code that was required to be keyed by the user.  Most features were only accessible via dropdown menus, but these could not be identified by assistive technology. This was especially problematic for screen-reader users, who were unable to detect and use the dropdown menus.

Accessibility testing enables digital presence to remain inclusive of users with additional needs

Our approach included a combination of automated and manual testing methodologies. Our key methodology was a paired testing approach wherein a sighted engineer tests the application along with a native assistive technology user who is equally familiar with accessibility standards.

We also proposed solutions and best practices to resolve the Client’s accessibility challenges, including:

  1. Modifying select Voiceover components that informed users about the functionality and purpose of collapsible/ expandable buttons.
  2. Building native dropdown elements, including suitable ARIA techniques.
  3. New semantic tags for headings and table elements implemented into base code within their add-on widgets.
  4. The aXe add-on for Firefox and Chrome to find accessibility violations per page at code level.
  5. Browser zoom standardization so visually impaired users can zoom screen content to 200% in order to access the web application.

The Client’s web application is now subject to ongoing testing, with an ongoing goal of continuous accessibility improvements.

Key benefits

  • Following the corrective work on the web application, the credit union’s visually impaired members have a significantly better experience.
  • The web app is now WCAG-compliant and universally inclusive on the web and on mobile.
  • The Client has a complete and prioritized defect backlog they can address with their internal development team.
  • Voiceover users are now able to successfully log into the web banking application.
  • Dropdown menus are now identifiable with screen readers like JAWS and Voiceover.
  • The Client was able to share the prioritized defects with their software vendor and work toward correcting the issues with the vendor’s code.

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