Downside of external validation? There is none!

Jul 12 2022

External validation is a critical component of review for most organizations. External validation, as opposed to internal validation, holds greater credence in the review of work produced most closely associated with the internal activities of a business. Checking one’s own work can be problematic, as confirmation bias may veil the existence of real issues from being identified.

Websites in particular, benefit from external validation, as the usability and coding of the sites can be mapped against others, thus alleviating confirmation bias that comes from web departments reviewing their own work. The need for external validation of websites is only further exacerbated when the area of concern, if not properly identified and addressed, is grounds for litigious action. One such aspect of a website is accessibility. The nuance and level of specialization required to understand and interpret the standards of compliance for website accessibility often necessitates the employment of specialized outside vendors. In the case of validation, this need is evermore apparent.

Why External Validation Matters?

Think about it: a student shouldn’t grade their own papers, why should your IT department be responsible for checking their own work that they create? If someone who was tasked with completing an assignment was then asked to grade it, the odds are that the grade given would be good, regardless of the quality of the work product. Just as teachers serve as a safeguard for the moral integrity of the grading system in schools, external validation maintains the legitimacy of the scoring process used in assessing web content. Such legitimacy is obtained by the removal of sources of bias and delivers the most reliable and constructive feedback. The benefit of this feedback, in the context of external validation of websites for website accessibility compliance, is that it flags areas of concern that could be considered grounds for litigious action. This foresight allows you the opportunity to remedy concerns and potentially avoid litigation all together.

So, what’s the downside? There really is none. External validation doesn’t harm anyone.

What would external validation do for you?

Your website is much like your car. You know what you want and what you don’t; you know how to operate it; but for most, maintaining it or checking to see if something is wrong, is not something you have the knowledge to complete. Much like a car has a check engine warning light, your website needs a warning system to alert you to potential areas of concern. Most professional IT departments are ill-equipped to understand and respond to the current Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) because of an inability to understand them, this is by no fault of their own, the guidelines are complicated. But by using external validation software/services, expertly programmed software can make you aware of the problem and present you with ways to address the concern, thus teaching you how to address this problem in the future. The value of external validation is best exemplified by the old proverb “If you give a man a fish, you feed him for a day. If you teach a man to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.” By being aware of potential areas of concern and having training on how to correct it in the future, external validation gives the opportunity to help reduce the changes of failures being repeated in the future.

What AAAtraq can do for your company.

AAAtraq, with their 3.6 trillion data points and 18 years of compliance experience, offers one of the best risk profiling tools on the market. Mapping your content against 3.6 trillion data points enables AAAtraq to provide you with a comprehensive and detailed report. Upon use of AAAtraq’s Risk Profiling, clients will immediately be provided and understandable report that offers clarity on the areas of concern for those looking to mitigate risk. AAAtraq offers a free online risk assessment tool that allows users to audit their websites for compliance issues and get results in 60 seconds. Start by understanding the level of risk associated with your website. To ensure that your websites are inclusive, consider AAAtraq. AAAtraq encourages you to take 60 seconds to understand your own risk position – you can do it, free at (opens in a new window) - no registration required - and results are immediately available and understandable. Green = good - red = bad. In addition, AAAtraq offers a shield for clients, insuring them against litigation upon registering.

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