Tue 09 May 2017
134 of 195 council websites (69%) have passed the Socitm Better Connected accessibility test, indicating that their website content can be consumed by people with disabilities, including those using the keyboard only or assistive technologies like screenreaders.
This year Better Connected introduced a new, two-stage process for accessibility testing.
A limited stage one test designed to identify sites that would fail the full test was carried out on all 416 council websites in December 2016.
275 sites (two thirds of the total) passed this test. Socitm Insight member councils successful at stage one were tested at stage two, 195 councils in all.
The 69% pass rate at stage two compares with a 77% pass rate by the same cohort of councils in last year’s test.
These results should not be read as a deterioration because different, and arguably more difficult, tasks were tested this year. In particular, to pass ‘order a bulky waste collection’ - a test conducted on a mobile device - sites had to offer an online order form (not a pdf) and further, that order form and its associated payment module (as well as the site overall) had to be responsive.
Results of the more directly comparable top pages task shows that 88% of our stage two cohort passed this task, compared with 82% in 2016.
Individual councils can access detailed feedback on accessibility issues identified in their test from their results pages on betterconnected.socitm.net. An ‘all council’ report containing details of the testing process and the criteria used for evaluation can be accessed from https://betterconnected.socitm.net/usability/accessibility_stage_two/2016-17