The Guild for Human Services launched a new website that provides a redesigned digital presence and conveys The Guild’s vibrancy, unique community and continuum of services while also meeting the highest level of Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance.
Features of the new site include:
- Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) AAA compliance, the highest international standard for accessibility
- Interactive videos highlighting The Guild’s individualized approach, commitment to community and dedicated staff
- A dynamic blog spotlighting success stories, both large and small
- Refreshed branding, including a new Guild logo and color palette
- Simplified navigation
“Through words, images and videos, the newly designed website tells The Guild’s story – from our proud heritage as The Protestant Guild for the Blind to today’s dynamic, growing organization serving both youth and adults,” says Steven Belec, The Guild’s chief admissions and outreach officer. “The site appeals to current and prospective families, referral agencies, potential employees, and donors.”
The Guild partnered with Boston Interactive, an award-winning digital marketing agency, to develop the site and incorporate the elements required to make it accessible to a diverse audience of individuals of varying backgrounds and abilities. The site meets the guidelines of a Level AAA compliant website, the highest international standard for accessibility.
Users can personalize their browsing experience by utilizing a variety of options, including differing text sizes, high contrast, multiple languages and keyboard navigation. Additionally, all the website videos are linked to a sign-language version and accompanied by a transcript for users who may be hearing impaired or need to employ a screen reader. Color gradients and dropdown menus, which can be challenging for visually impaired users to navigate, are not used on the site.
The effort to overhaul The Guild’s former website began in January 2018 with the first meeting of an internal Website Committee composed of eight staff members. In subsequent sessions, the committee established accessibility guidelines, design priorities and developed a Request for Proposal. Boston Interactive was selected through a competitive bidding process in the summer of 2018. Design work commenced in the fall.
“The web team spent months brainstorming ideas, surveying Guild members, researching websites, designing aesthetics and participating in focus groups to develop our vision for the website,” says Allison Smith, a member of the Website Committee and clinical manager in Adult Services. “The committee represented individuals from across The Guild and worked collaboratively to create an inviting, functional and robust website that captures the essence of The Guild.”