Accessibility Procurement Requirements
These guidelines apply to:
- software that is being purchased, is being donated, or is free
- software for use by students and/or employees
- equipment that includes a software interface
- audio and video systems
1) Review guidelines below.
2) Request VPAT from vendor.
3) Complete EITA Accessibility Review Form.
NOTE: If you are purchasing software or equipment through FIT's "request for proposal" (RFP) procedure, these steps are included.
Questions to Ask Vendors Before Choosing Software
What accessibility standards do your developers use? (examples are Section 508 and WCAG)
Do you do testing with disabled users?
Does your company have a road map for accessibility?
Have you tested and/or developed your mobile apps with accessibility in mind?
To ensure compliance with applicable accessibility laws and accessibility standards, all new purchases, donations, or software downloads involving EIT must undergo an accessibility review before proceeding with purchase or acquisition, regardless of dollar amount. New or existing contracts and licenses may not be signed or renewed until an accessibility review is completed.
All EIT are required to meet the latest versions of the following accessibility standards:
- Web Accessibility Content (WCAG) 2.1 Level AA
- Web Accessibility Initiative Accessible Rich Internet Applications Suite (WAI-ARIA) 1.0, where applicable for dynamic web content
All purchases involving EIT require the vendor to submit an Accessibility Conformance Report completed utilizing the Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT) 2.4 Rev WCAG (.docx) (from the Information Technology Industry Council) for review by the EITA Officer. Upon review of the VPAT, accessibility testing may be required.
Therefore, in order to ensure timely review, we recommend you request a VPAT from the vendor a month in advance of review. This will allow the vendor time to complete the VPAT and FIT time to conduct a thorough review.
These actions are part of the Request for Proposal (“RFP”) process. If a formal RFP is conducted by the Purchasing Department, this review will take place as part of that process.
After you’ve received the VPAT, please complete the EIT Purchase Accessibility Review form to initiate the review process. If the vendor is unable to provide a VPAT, they must submit a certification that they are unable to do so; this will be reviewed by the EITA officer.
All new purchase orders and/or contracts involving EIT products and/or services, regardless of the dollar amount, are subject to the above review process.
All renewals of existing purchase orders and/or contracts, involving EIT products and/or services, regardless of dollar amount, are subject to the above review process if they’ve never been previously reviewed, or if there is a change in users or a change in the product/service that may impact the user interface experience.
In the case when it is determined that a EIT product and/or service must be made accessible, the Vendor will develop a remediation plan and timeline in which the product and/or service will be made accessible.