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Re: Recruiting assistive technology users for usability testing

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From: Mark Magennis
Date: Apr 21, 2010 3:18PM


Angela,

I'm assuming that the product or service you're testing is designed to be used specifically by the company's employees. In which case you could probably couch your request in terms that are positive with respect to the company's wish not to discriminate against employees with disabilities. It might also be useful to show that they are being treated in the same way as other specifically identified groups, particularly groups that the HR department would have no problem with 'singling out'. Something like:

"The company requires that the new system must be usable by all staff in order to avoid workplace discrimination. Therefore, the user testing panel must include staff members with all of the following characteristics:

An equal mix of both male and female
Staff from across all age bands
Staff with disabilities who would access the system via assistive technologies
Staff from all grades that are expected to access the system
..."

I wonder does that make it clearer that they are being targeted for important positive reasons and that they are only one of a number of important groups being targeted?

Mark

On 20 Apr 2010, at 17:49, Angela Colter wrote:

> I'm working on a usability testing project for a large financial services
> company and I'd like to include company employees who are assistive
> technology users in our group of participants.
>
> Problem is, the Human Resources department has, in the past, frowned on
> asking these employees to participate because HR doesn't want them to be
> "singled out."
>
> I'm wondering if any of you have experiences dealing with getting permission
> from a company's HR department to involve employees with disabilities in
> your usability testing efforts.
>
> Thanks for any advice you have to share.
>
> Angela
>
> --
> Angela Colter
> Usability Consultant
> 215-921-6677
>
> Web: http://www.angelacolter.com
> Twitter: @angelacolter
>