AccessibilityChecker

Create accessible PDF files directly from Word

On September 23, 2018 a new EU directive enters into force, which aims to ensure the availability of public companies’ websites and mobile applications.

The directive means that, in the future, public companies must ensure that all documents on their websites are optimised for accessibility for people with visual impairments. Specifically, this means that i.a. PDF files stored on the site must be accessible with the screen reader used by the visually impaired.

At SkabelonDesign, we have developed a solution to manage this, allowing you to continue your work processes confident that you are complying with the new directive.

AccessbilityChecker

Create accessible
PDF files

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With AccessibilityChecker, you can easily and quickly create accessible PDF files. An otherwise cumbersome process becomes a natural part of the workflow and allows everyone to have control over the documents from start to finish. The solution works directly in Word and in your templates.

Your Word template

In order to get the best output, your template should follow certain best practice guidelines. There are no specific requirements, but much is being done in the Word template already to optimise screen viewing.

Your Word document

In order to make documents accessible, a range of things need to be considered. SkabelonDesign’s solution opens as a task pane in Word and guides the user through the document, focusing on accessibility. Among other things, the following must be considered in order to give the visually impaired access to documents:

  • Do the images contain alt-text?
  • Do you have headers in tables?
  • How should tables be read aloud?
  • How should images be handled?
  • What about any empty cells in tables?
  • How should graphs be read aloud?
  • Does the document have a title?

With SkabelonDesign’s tool, the user can easily edit and add metadata, which makes the document accessible to a screen reader.

Your finished PDF file

After the user has optimised the Word document, save it as a PDF file as normal. The functionality from the Word document is maintained, and the solution ensures that, technology-wise, the content can be read by a screen reader. Among other things, certain types of information are moved to the right places, and the PDF file is flagged as PDF/UA.

Read more

Directive (EU) 2016/2102 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 26 October 2016 on the accessibility of the websites and mobile applications of public sector bodies. See more here

 

PDF/UA (Universal Accessibility) standard. See more here

Accessibility_taskpane

Increased accessibility

The aim of the EU directive is to give people with visual impairment better access to public services. Among other things, public companies must therefore ensure accessibility of documents uploaded to the company website. One of the requirements is that the visually impaired must be able to access files and have them read aloud using a screen reader. This imposes a number of requirements to documents, and for many public companies will mean that the process of publishing PDF files on the website becomes more resource-intensive. To help you avoid that, we have developed a solution that allows all the company’s Microsoft Office Word users to easily create accessible PDF files.

SkabelonDesign’s solution allows users to work on optimising accessibility directly in a Word document. The solution leans on PDF/UA (Universal Accessibility), and the final PDF created with the solution is flagged with this standard in order to help screen readers identify available documents.