Microsoft Software Tooling and Process to Ensure Development of Accessible Software and Websites


Presented at 4:00pm in Virtual C on Thursday, November 12, 2020.



  • Jia Ma, Microsoft

Session Details

  • Length of Session: 45 minutes
  • Format: Lecture
  • Expertise Level: All Levels
  • Type of session: Pre-conference


You know it's important to keep your colleagues engaged for accessibility work, so that it's not only your responsibility. But how? What tools can you use to get them excited? How to attract them to your meetings? What can you do to make them feel proud of their accessibility work? You will find out these answers and more in this session.


When your colleagues or teammates are also excited for and engaged in accessibility work, accessibility will be organically incorporated into your company's or institution's culture. This is critical because it not only ensures your products or services can be used by everyone on this planet, but also makes your company or institution standout in the industry and drives revenue growth. This session showcases the outcomes of the program management ecosystem and the engineering tooling system that are owned and consumed by one of Microsoft's divisions for improving accessibility engagement and capability. The ecosystem includes tools such as a single source of truth system for tracking and monitoring accessibility work, a dashboard for viewing accessibility health of the entire division, and a notification system that remind stakeholders of accessibility actions. The engineering tooling system includes a compliance assessment form that automatically triggers work items creation in work items tracking product (such as Azure DevOps), a source code editor (such as VSCode) accessibility extension for identifying accessibility issues while coding, and a CI/CD solution for accessibility automation test. A few use cases of applying the program management ecosystem and leveraging the engineering tooling are presented with quantitative and qualitative results. The objective of this presentation is to recommend the engagement strategy and model that have proved significant impact on Microsoft's accessibility journey.


  1. Effective methodologies can ensure awareness and engagement for accessibility work
  2. Tooling strategy is very important for organizations or companies to scale up accessibility work
  3. Personalization is important for engaging accessibility effort from various types of stakeholders

Disability Areas

All Areas

Topic Areas

Administrative/Campus Policy, Faculty Development & Support, Uncategorized

Speaker Bio(s)

Jia Ma

Jia Ma is a skilled program manager for accessibility with 5+ years of experience. She is the go-to expert at her companies for accessibility. Once a software engineer, she understands technical challenges of accessibility, and knows how to demystify accessibility for all engineers she works with. She has great business acumen to align accessibility work with company's lofty goals and bring significant values to her company.