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Help Center
Help Center

Accessibility Challenges at Scale and How to Overcome Them

Written by: Mandar

May 16, 2024

Accessibility Challenges at Scale Blog Header

Documents are a key part of digital communication in today’s business environment. A lot of different forms of content like business plans, reports, brochures, and slide decks are shared as documents. 

If you are using tools like Microsoft PowerPoint, Google Slides, or Canva to make these documents, there is a good chance that they are not WCAG compliant. This means that people with visual impairments are not able to use these critical business documents.

Did you know? Globally, more than 2.2 billion people are affected by visual impairments

Hence, ensuring that all your digital content like your website, app, and documents is accessible is very important.


As we create more documents, focusing on accessibility becomes difficult. So to help you, here is how you can overcome challenges to create accessible documents at scale.

Click to jump ahead:

What does an accessible document mean?

An accessible document helps everyone, including individuals with disabilities, to effectively access and navigate its content. These documents support assistive technologies, like screen readers and text-to-speech devices, making it easier for people with visual impairments to go through your document.

What are some legal compliances regarding the accessibility of digital documents?

You may also face legal consequences if your documents are not accessible. Laws like the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act demand that public digital content is accessible. Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) have a set of criteria one can follow to ensure accessibility. With Venngage, you can easily create accessible documents like reports, flyers, whitepapers, presentations, and infographics that are compliant with Section 508 and ADA.

Challenges of creating accessible documents at scale (and how can you overcome them)

Design now and fix later approach

Today, too many people first design the document and later work on making it accessible. A lot of time and resources are spent to then ensure that the document meets the required accessibility guidelines. 

Also, people focus on aesthetics over accessibility while designing documents. When aesthetics are prioritized, essential accessibility features may be overlooked, making the document difficult for people with visual impairments to use.

As a result of overlooking accessibility in the design stage itself, a lot of time is later spent on remediation and fixing documents. This makes the whole process very tedious and organizations are not able to achieve scale in designing accessible documents.

How does Venngage help you overcome this?

When designing with Venngage, you will be able to design for accessibility from the start, rather than fixing it later while also ensuring that the document is aesthetically pleasing.

We have preset templates that are accessible by default. These comply with internationally recognized accessibility regulations including the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1, Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act 2005 (AODA), and Section 508.

These templates make it easy for you to design documents without worrying too much about color contrast, text styles, reading order, etc. Additionally, we have a built-in AI-alt text generator that makes it super easy to add alternative text to your images and graphs.

Venngage AI-alt text generator

Lack of user training

Most organizations find it very difficult to educate everyone who creates documents on the required compliances. It is also not possible for everyone to memorize the requirements of these guidelines.   

There are a few tools that can help fix accessibility issues. However, organizations need to spend a lot of time and resources to train users on how to use the tools to ensure the final output of the document is compliant with ADA Guidelines, WCAG, etc.

Hence, what ends up happening is that many people design different documents using different tools like Canva, Google Slides, etc., and some people are tasked with fixing the accessibility issues present in them. 

This is a tedious task that causes a lot of back and forth ultimately leading to friction in the design process.

How does Venngage help you overcome this?

Venngage is an extremely easy-to-use platform that will help you create accessible documents that do not need any fixing later. It comes with in-app prompts and nudges that inform users whether the document they are designing is adhering to accessibility guidelines or not. If the document has any accessibility issues, the platform also highlights the exact problem and provides a quick way to solve it. 

One of these prompts is the color contrast checker. This checker automatically shows you if the colors you are using have a good contrast or if you need to make some adjustments.

Venngage - Color contrast checker

Another helpful feature is the accessibility checker. This is like a checklist that helps you understand if there are any accessibility issues like text size, missing alt-text, and color contrast issues during the design process itself.

Venngage -  accessibility checker

Difficult to monitor all documents created

With so many people using different tools like Canva, Adobe, Microsoft PowerPoint, Google Slides, etc. it becomes difficult for any organization to monitor all the documents that have been created for accessibility-related issues. 

It is impossible to know how many documents were produced, how many have accessibility issues and what are the most common ones that have occurred. 

Having this information handy is essential for knowing where you are going wrong in the design process and fixing it.

How does Venngage help you overcome this?

In addition to being an accessible PDF creation tool, Venngage also acts as a document monitoring system. It helps you understand if the documents created by people in your organization are in compliance with the required standards.

Venngage Monitoring Platform

You can get access to a team dashboard that will show you the most common issues in the documents created in your organization, what percentage of documents are accessible, and the trend of detected issues over time.

This helps you to get an overview of the documents being created so that you can take accessibility-related corrective measures immediately.

Conclusion: Designing accessible documents at scale can be achieved by focusing on designing for accessibility from the start and not fixing it later

Designing with accessibility in mind is essential for ensuring your documents can be used by everyone, including those with visual impairments. 

Creating accessible documents comes with its own set of challenges; especially when you have to create them at scale. Connect with Venngage today to explore how we can help you create accessible documents at scale.