The Benefits Of VPAT Certification

  • 1.08.2022
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    What is VPAT certification?

    VPAT certification is the process of using the Voluntary Product Accessibility Template or VPAT form to accurately inform how accessible information and communication technology (ICT) products such as software, hardware, electronic content, and support documentation are to people with disabilities, in conformity with Section 508 Standards for ICT accessibility, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), and the European Accessibility Standards (EN 301).

    Reports on the VPAT assessments underlying a VPAT certification should be written well enough to enable information and communication technology (ICT) buyers of the product or service to make informed decisions before purchasing. The filled VPAT form should be able to help buyers do the following:

    • Comprehend the targeted product or service’s level of accessibility compliance to Section 508 Standards.


    • Make a comparison of compliance among similar products and services from different vendors.


    • Choose the product or service that best meets the set accessibility standards as well as the organization’s functional and legal requirements.


    • Plan on how to acquire equally effective access when the desired accessible product or service is not available, including request for changes to products or services that fall short of the set accessibility standards.

    Presenting an accurate VPAT certificate is, therefore, essential for providers of ICT because buyers tend to take it at face value rather than perform an alternative evaluation of the product or service to ascertain the information they need. 

    Failing to provide adequate details and explanatory remarks for accessibility issues in a product or service during the VPAT certification process will most likely deter buyers from purchasing the product or service.

    During the VPAT certification process, always ensure that details such as features that exist and how they support the accessibility standards, and features that are missing and how they will be addressed, are articulately captured in the filled VPAT form. That significantly contributes to the purchase decision-making process by the buyer.

    Importantly, VPAT certification should be complete and accurate enough to provide a quick initial assessment of the product or service under consideration. The process should also be cognizant of the fact that buyers want to read the concise information about a product or service’s accessibility features and compliance with Section 508 Standards in order to make an assessment regarding whether they will purchase it or not.

    The VPAT process is complicated. Let us handle it for you.

      Practical observations about VPAT assessments

      VPAT certification is preceded by thorough VPAT assessments of a product or service’s features based on the accessibility thrusts provided in the VPATs as updated from time to time with the renewal of the underpinning accessibility standards: Section 508, WCAG, and INT.

      Technically, VPAT certification is a complex issue to deal with, and it presents many challenges to both the vendors and buyers. On the vendor’s side, vendors do not want to be too detailed about the accessibility deficits in their products and services, especially if they are small and are being worked on.

      On the buyers’ side, buyers do not want to do a full-blown accessibility evaluation of a product or service. They simply want to take the VPAT certification at face value.

      That is where a mindful business invests in procuring the services of a trusted VPAT certification professional who can deploy their practical experience in deciding how much detail to include in the VPAT form so as to ensure benefits of the VPAT certification accrue to the business and its products.

      Benefits that businesses accrue from VPAT certification

      It is important to highlight that VPAT certification is a legal necessity. This means that if a business does not comply with Section 508 Standards, WCAG, and other recognized accessibility rules, the concerned authorities could impose legal and financial charges on such a business. Therefore, VPAT certification is of utmost importance to avoid legal proceedings and the associated damages.

      Besides avoiding the legal consequences of noncompliance, VPAT certification also has other benefits for businesses. Some of these benefits are as follows:

      • Opens the business’ prospects for working with the federal government

      If a business wants to work with any of the federal government agencies or offer any form of service to them, VPAT certification is mandatory. The VPAT certification process will lead to an adequately filled VPAT 2.4 template that will not only help a company to understand the accessibility features of its products but also impress federal government agency officials to work with the company.

      • Spot the accessibility issues in products and services

      During the filling of the VPAT form, businesses mention all the features present or missing in their products or services. That becomes a very apt self-assessment of the product or service that helps the business identify any accessibility issues associated with the product or service. If a business engages the services of seasoned VPAT certification experts like ADA Compliance Pros, the experts could even calculate the products or services’ accessibility compliance percentage and suggest to the business the features that are required to be integrated to make the product or service truly accessible.

      • Access to bespoke compliance and product development services

      The VPAT certification process can help a business understand which areas of their products or services require specialized attention so as to make the product or service accessible. That enables the business to focus on those areas when seeking experts to help them improve the product or service.

      This targeted resourcing for specific improvement of the features of a product or service ensures customized service delivery and product development excellence that guarantees enhanced accessibility of the product or service. It also helps businesses to reduce compliance service time, which makes the process more profitable.

      • Improved business prospects and profitability

      VPAT certification makes a business increase its chances of winning bids. That is because the certification assists prospects to make informed choices about the business’s products and services. With an accurate VPAT certification, a business is rated above its competitors who have not taken a similar step in bidding processes, which translates into better business prospects and profitability.

      • Enhanced business credibility, reputation, and brand image

      A business that demonstrates going out of its way to show the features of its products and services and how accessible they are to people with disabilities, as well as being honest about features that have accessibility issues that they are working on, reaps significantly in terms of reputation, credibility, and brand image.

      Because VPAT certification enables a business to be truthful about the features of its products or services that have accessibility issues, businesses that are honest about the features of their products and services that have accessibility issues and the efforts they are making to make these features accessible earn the trust and respect of buyers. That is because buyers prefer to purchase products and services from trustworthy vendors.

      Need more information and help with VPAT certification?

      If you are having trouble with VPAT certification, do not let that distract you from your core business. You can get help today. One of the things that our clients have found illuminating is our VPAT explainer and how we can turn their VPAT certification process into an accessibility empowerment endeavor for them. To access these benefits, click here or call (626) 486-2201 today to talk to one of our experienced VPAT certification experts.