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Job-hunting isn’t what it used to be! Back when I started out in the workforce, looking for a job meant picking up the phone to ask about job openings, and mailing (yes, snail mailing, with a stamp) paper copies of my resume and cover letter. But times have certainly changed.

Today, everything seems to be happening online. Most people find and apply for job openings online. Some companies even conduct pre-employment assessments on the web and remote interviews before they ever meet a job candidate in person—if they do at all.

Years ago, I was issued a compelling challenge by my friend and colleague, Dr. David Braddock, executive director of the Coleman Institute for Cognitive Disabilities. He asked me to consider examining the right to web access for people with cognitive disabilities—and I was intrigued.

IBM is a global technology and consulting company headquartered in Armonk, New York. With operations in more than 170 countries, the company develops and sells software and systems hardware and a broad range of infrastructure, cloud, and consulting services.

IBM has also been a leader in the accessible technology arena for more than 100 years, and in July 2014, it appointed Frances West as the company's first chief accessibility officer. PEAT recently talked with West about her new role and IBM's approach to accessibility.

CLOSED: Tell us about your experiences!  PEAT is conducting a national survey about online job applications. This initiative will help us to better understand and document accessibility needs related to online job seeking and focus PEAT’s future efforts in this area. This survey will close on June 30, 2015.

As a senior vice president and information technology manager at Wells Fargo, I frequently received the question, "Can the company buy me a...?" Managers and team members always seemed to want the latest and greatest gadget, software application, or piece of hardware. My answer was always, "How will it make you more productive, and how will it fit into our environment?" Most of the time, the requester had no answer to these questions, so we didn't pursue things any further.

I’m excited to be writing this introductory blog post officially announcing the launch of PEATworks.org, an interactive online resource focused on accessible technology in the workplace. This new web portal is the result of work done over the past year by the Partnership on Employment & Accessible Technology (PEAT), a multi-faceted initiative funded by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy to promote the employment of people with disabilities through the development and adoption of accessible technology.

Today, many companies are implementing “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD) policies—meaning employees use their own mobile devices (laptops, tablets, and smartphones) at work to access company information and applications. When it comes to accessibility, such policies can offer advantages for both employers and technology users. But they also present some challenges.

PEAT wants to share your good ideas on this website and elsewhere, and you'll have control over how we do that, including staying anonymous. Submit your response by using the button below.

Measurement is an important part of ensuring an accessible technology initiative is meeting its intended goals. Metrics, both quantitative and qualitative, can help validate activities, identify where to concentrate, and communicate to internal and external stakeholders.

PEAT wants to share your good ideas on this website and elsewhere, and you'll have control over how we do that, including staying anonymous. Submit your response by using the button below.

Sometimes accessibility barriers are identified after a product is launched. These barriers can be documented internally, and then addressed when products are updated. Different enterprises may perform this function in different ways; some use a dedicated accessibility tool, while others add an accessibility section to a general product management tool.

PEAT wants to share your good ideas on this website and elsewhere, and you'll have control over how we do that, including staying anonymous. Submit your response by using the button below.

When a company adopts an accessibility initiative, whether formal or not, it is valuable to communicate that commitment, both internally and externally. Such expressions of commitment may run the gamut from statements on public-facing websites to internal training programs to participation in accessibility associations and events.

PEAT wants to share your good ideas on this website and elsewhere, and you'll have control over how we do that, including staying anonymous. Submit your response by using the button below.

Strong accessibility initiatives usually have support from the top—executives and other leaders who communicate their commitment to an

The Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN) is a national grassroots disability rights organization run by and for people with autism that works to improve public understanding of people with autism, including perceptions related to employment. ASAN also provides insight and expertise into the importance of accessible technology to people with autism and cognitive disabilities in general.

PEAT recently spoke with Julia Bascom, ASAN’s director of programs, about the organization's work in this area.

Headquartered in Washington, D.C., CTIAThe Wireless Association® represents the wireless communications industry and has a history of leadership on mobile accessibility issues.

We recently spoke with CTIA's Matthew Gerst, director of state regulatory & external affairs, about CTIA's work in this area.

The World Institute on Disability (WID) is an internationally recognized leader in promoting inclusion of people with disabilities in all aspects of community life, including employment. Founded in 1983 by leaders of the Independent Living Movement, it is headquartered at universally designed Ed Roberts Campus in Berkeley, California. PEAT recently spoke with WID's executive director Anita Aaron about her organization's work in the area of accessible technology.

Some organizations use a business case to justify their accessibility initiative and help drive its development. Some do not, arguing that accessibility simply has to be done, for many good reasons. What’s your take?

PEAT wants to share your good ideas on this website and elsewhere, and you'll have control over how we do that, including staying anonymous. Submit your response by using the button below.

If you embrace the adage "What Gets Measured Gets Done," you already know the value of evaluation and measurement. Measuring the progress of a corporate initiative helps keep it on track by identifying ways that it is—or isn't—meeting its intended goals. Metrics and measures can also demonstrate the need for a program in the first place, or prove that it's making a difference once implemented. This same logic applies to accessible workplace technology efforts.

Although legal requirements can sometimes feel burdensome to employers, on the accessibility front they can be very helpful. The relevant federal laws and regulations, such as "Section 508" and the "21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act" (CVAA) provide helpful and detailed information about technical standards that employers can use to guide their use and procurement of technology that is accessible to all users, including people with disabilities. 

Live recording of the webinar "Powering Up Your Employment Potential Through  Accessible Technology" originally recorded on Friday, September 26, 2014.

If you're a person with a disability and a user of technology, you are in a powerful position to help shape the accessibility of your current or future workplace.  Join PEAT’s guest speakers to learn how to advocate for the adoption and promotion of accessible technology and why accessibility matters in the workplace.

Ernst & Young, LLP (EY) is a multinational professional services firm that provides assurance, tax, consulting, and advisory services to its clients. It employs more than 175,000 employees in more than 700 offices across the globe.

The company has earned great praise for its diversity and inclusion practices and was recently ranked number one on DiversityInc's list of top employers for people with disabilities. That commitment to inclusion extends to accessible workplace technology, and PEAT recently spoke with Lori B. Golden, the firm's abilities strategy leader, to learn more.

Headquartered in Melville, New York, Canon U.S.A., Inc. is a leading provider of consumer, business-to-business, and industrial digital imaging solutions. In addition to cameras and visual equipment, Canon produces a wide range of office solutions including copiers, scanners, printers, and software. To learn more about the company’s commitment to providing accessible products and services for the workplace, PEAT recently spoke with Paul Albano, a senior product manager at Canon U.S.A's Business Imaging Solutions Group.