In the modern era, every organization has employees that are going through some kind of disability. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, when the companies used to run their operations from corporate office buildings, it was easier for the disabled employees to hold a grasp of things. As soon as the lockdown began and operations adopted the remote method, coordinating with the disabled employees and conducting their training and work sessions posed a challenge to the companies.
During this time, most of the companies had adopted the e-learning method using learning management systems to deliver employee training, compliance training, and all other sorts of training. However, it was a problem for the disabled employees to actively take part and involve themselves in the method. Keeping this in mind, a law under the Workforce Rehabilitation Act came into force under section 508 in which companies, federal agencies, and their contractors were required to make any kind of electronic and information technology accessible to those with disabilities. Being 508 compliant was a necessity that was instructed by the government. No company was exempted from this law. For people with certain disabilities, it is important to learn the accurate use of websites. It is quite difficult to impart knowledge to them using e-learning courses. According to the statistics of a survey conducted, it has been found that:
- The number of visually impaired people in the world crosses 285 million.
- Over 10% of our total population is a victim of hearing issues to a certain level.
- In the USA, more than 15% of its population is disabled and cannot read and engage themselves with full efficiency.
- About two-thirds of the country and the world is filled with people who have movement-related disabling conditions.
According to the law, it was stated that from June 2001, every company should have 508 compliant programs that will help the disabled employees in working with full efficiency and effectiveness. Taking care of their accessibility must be the top priority according to 508 compliance.
Now that the companies have started using learning management systems to conduct employee training, compliance and safety training, and much more, making the learning management systems and the e-learning process simple and accessible to the disabled section of employees. Here are some of the steps that can help companies create an e-learning course compliant with section 508 of the Workforce Rehabilitation Act:
- Using suitable colors with appropriate contrasting shades so that people inflicted with color blindness can easily differentiate between subjects.
- Providing captions in videos and descriptions for images to prevent any sort of misunderstanding.
- Summary of different types of graphs is to be given so that anyone can easily understand the content.
- Use animation and videos in your e-learning process so that the content of the course is made more interesting and engaging.
- Setting font to a good size so that anyone with a visual disability can easily understand the written content without making mistakes.
- Make sure that the content of the course is structured correctly and in a sequence. Consistency in the content of the course makes it easier for the employees to understand.
The e-learning industry has come a long way when it comes to delivering content for different types of training sessions. 508 compliant courses have helped disabled employees in several ways to improve their efficiency in the work and have given a major boost to the workforce, making things more convenient for not only the disabled but for everyone.