Senior Accessibility Designer (A11y)
New York, NY,US
AT NORTHWESTERN MUTUAL, WE ARE STRONG, INNOVATIVE AND GROWING. WE INVEST IN OUR PEOPLE. WE CARE AND MAKE A POSITIVE DIFFERENCE.
SENIOR ACCESSIBILITY (A11Y) DESIGNER
Northwestern Mutual has 160 years of history providing financial security to millions of people. Continuing that tradition means changing to meet the needs of our clients and financial advisors. We are a strong, innovative, and growing company that invests in people who care and make a positive impact. The Design team leads the way by creating human, simple, and engaging products to help people plan, track, and protect their financial goals.
A Senior Accessibility Designer at Northwestern Mutual has a passion for inclusive, accessible experiences that make a difference in people's lives. They are hands-on, innovative, and excited to collaboratively see projects through from start to finish. They will also thrive in mentoring and assisting other Designers across the Design team.
We are leading a major digital transformation and our Senior Accessibility Designer can expect to play a critical part. An ideal candidate should be an advocate for inclusive design. Their work should strive to achieve core business objectives and set industry standards. They should be committed to the work we are doing, always striving to push our vision forward.
WHAT YOU’LL BE DOING
To start, the Senior Accessibility Designer will be embedded within our Design System team with some outreach to our broader Design team:
Work collaboratively with Design System Designers and Engineers to review and remediate existing accessibility issues.
Provide direction and guidance to Design System Designers and Engineers to meet WCAG 2.1
Participate in the Design System team’s reviews to provide considerations and approaches to accessibility.
Partner with Design System team members to ensure all new components meet WCAG 2.1 A/AA before they are made available to our consuming Design & Engineering teams.
Document your design and accessibility decisions / recommendations for the Design System Team as guidance for development of new components.
Partner with the Design System’s Content Strategist to provide clear accessibility guidance for teams using the Design System
Design Community Engagement
Most of your time will be spent working with the Design Systems team. You will also engage Designers throughout the organization through:
Hosting Accessibility Office Hours with our Accessibility Lead and Senior Accessibility Engineer. You will mentor and coach other Product Designers as they consider Accessibility within their Designs.
Participating in the Accessibility Guild, run by our Accessibility Lead. This is a cross functional group invested in growing NM’s collective knowledge in building Accessible and Inclusive experiences.
Over time, as issues in our Design System are fully remediated, we expect this role will expand to include:
Refine and update NM’s internal Accessibility Design tools and frameworks
Partnering with our Platforms team to ensure our global interaction and UI patterns and page templates are accessible.
Developing a point of view on Accessibility for native mobile solutions and work collaboratively with our native mobile Design & Engineering teams.
Assisting our Accessibility Lead in existing training and presentations on inclusive design practices and accessibility guidelines.
BRING YOUR BEST! WHAT THIS ROLE NEEDS
A Senior Accessibility Experience Designer would have the following experience and skills:
Working knowledge of WCAG 2.1 Guidelines and a point of view on how they can be applied to both Design System and Product Design work.
Ability to demonstrate and coach others on how to achieve conformance with WCAG and current practices in inclusive design.
Knowledge of UX and Product Design fundamentals – including fundamentals of visual design principles like color, typography, and layout
Experience working with or within a Design System team.
Eagerness to explore multiple directions with a team before landing on a final solution.
Effectively communicate your design decisions in written and oral form to a cross-functional team.
Ability to work independently and collaboratively with a cross-functional team. You are a self-starter who is user-focused, detail- and solutions-oriented.
Ability to handle more than one project with different timelines simultaneously.
You are proficient in a variety of design and prototyping tools (Northwestern Mutual uses Figma)
Broad knowledge of design considerations for assistive technologies
Understanding of WAI-ARIA and how it is applied to a user interface design
Foundational knowledge and ability to conduct a Design oriented accessibility audit. You may need to conduct reviews on experiences to help Designers better understand current-state challenges and approaches to meeting WCAG 2.1 Level AA.
While not required, your knowledge in these boosts your impact in this role:
Industry A11y certification(s) (Eg. IAAP CPACC, WAS, CPWA)
Familiarity of tools to conduct accessibility testing
GROW YOUR CAREER WITH A BEST-IN-CLASS COMPANY THAT PUTS OUR CLIENT’S INTERESTS AT THE CENTER OF ALL WE DO. GET STARTED NOW!
W e are an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, age or status as a protected veteran, or any other characteristic protected by law.
If you work or would be working in Colorado or outside of a Corporate location, please click here for information pertaining to compensation and benefits.
FIND YOUR FUTURE
We’re excited about the potential people bring to Northwestern Mutual. You can grow your career here while enjoying first-class perks, benefits, and commitment to diversity and inclusion.
Flexible work schedules
Employee resource groups