New OutSystems Capabilities Give Enterprises the Dev Tools They Need to Meet the Strategic Mandate on Digital Accessibility

Boston -  21 May 2020

Global Accessibility Awareness Day Puts a Spotlight on Inclusiveness in Digital; OutSystems 70 Development Accelerators Guarantee Customers Can Deliver

The COVID-19 crisis has forced people to shift most of their work, education, and purchasing online, and that move has put the more than 1.3 billion people living with disabilities worldwide at risk. Today, OutSystems is announcing over 70 development accelerators that ensure web and mobile applications created on the OutSystems low-code development platform can comply with the highest accessibility standards and regulations.

As companies look to respond to these new demands, OutSystems is unique in enabling organizations to use their existing skills to quickly build accessible applications, while maintaining complete control over the user experience, and meeting the most demanding scalability and security requirements.

“Accessibility is all about inclusivity,” said Bruce Buttles, Digital Channel Director of Humana. “At Humana, we strive to have our digital experiences available to all. There’s never been a time in the history of app development where agility is more critical, and having accessibility built-in propels us towards this goal. The breadth of pre-built components makes a huge difference in how fast we can bring new solutions to market. It’s one of the reasons we chose OutSystems, and I’m excited about how they constantly evolve the product to help me meet the needs of my customers.”

“With various forms of shelter in place all over the globe, people now rely on digital services for almost everything from shopping and remote work to education and healthcare. It’s now more important than ever to ensure these digital platforms are accessible to everyone,” said Goncalo Gaiolas, VP of Product at OutSystems. “Building apps with great accessibility is a legal responsibility, but more importantly, it is a moral responsibility for app developers to ensure that everyone can perceive, navigate, and interact with your website or mobile app to get the services and products they need.”

Today, accessibility is more than just a recommendation. Research shows that just one accessibility complaint costs organizations approximately $10K in investigation costs and in 2019, in just the U.S., one accessibility lawsuit was filed every business hour, often targeting the same companies over and over.

Launching new applications swiftly doesn’t have to be at odds with ensuring they comply with the highest accessibility standards. This is why OutSystems added new accessibility capabilities to its state-of-the-art reactive model allowing developers to create accessible apps for web and mobile, while still ensuring full freedom of customization. In this release:

  • Accessibility-Ready Development Accelerators help companies speed up the development of apps that meet the highest accessibility standards, such as Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.1 AA), Section 508, and ADA. The more than 70 UI patterns, widgets, and screen templates are WCAG 2.1 AA compliant out-of-the-box and include pre-defined semantic tags, ARIA roles, and styling (typography, contrast ratios, spacing, and navigation), which means less coding work to implement common, accessible interfaces and user interactions such as carousels, accordions, and drop-down search boxes.
  • Fully Customizable Accessible Interfaces. Developers also have full freedom to create their own custom UI patterns and interfaces in a fully accessible way, no matter how rich or complex. Low-code can be used to set accessibility compliant styling, color contrast, HTML markup, and ARIA roles to help them ensure that whatever they create is suitable for keyboard-only use and assistive technologies, such as screen readers. Existing accessible CSS and Javascript components can also be easily incorporated.
  • OutSystems Live Style Guide allows organizations to create an accessible Design System that meets their unique brand guidelines and allows the easy reuse of branded components across applications. This helps organizations scale their development practice by reducing duplicated work while ensuring consistency and scaling accessibility best practices across their entire application portfolio.

OutSystems is also joining the celebration of Global Accessibility Awareness Day by hosting a webinar, “How to Build Accessible Apps Fast,” that will show developers and IT leaders how they can use low-code to create accessible apps in just weeks. Register Here.

Learn more about these announcements in this blog post.

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