The cannabis industry was compelled to create a viable market in an ongoing condition of uncertainty because it was established under dubious legality. Industry entrepreneurs have demonstrated their capacity for innovation, reimagination, and adaptation. Today, cannabis technology experts create software specifically for the needs of customers to assure their safety, cannabis engineers are pioneers in hydroponic cultivation, and experts from throughout the business are showcasing their dedication to the moral advancement of our legal cannabis market.
Due to its distinctiveness, the industry has a prominent position in the broader market and is compelled to serve as a breeding ground for ethical business practices. Despite its fast expansion, the cannabis sector has managed to preserve the welcoming and neighborhood-focused culture that has made it famous. The cannabis industry has come up with innovative ways to increase access to the plant despite the lack of clear regulation or historical precedent. Those who most require medicinal cannabis also face the highest access barriers, much like the rest of the healthcare sector. Accessibility becomes crucial to success in a market with a staggering number of potential customers who could feel intimidated when entering a dispensary. A company’s physical and online environments can significantly change its capacity to survive in the fiercely competitive cannabis industry.
The legal cannabis sector has changed how people view the plant by putting accessibility first. Due to social shame and prohibition, it fell on the business to inform the public and debunk false beliefs. The most prosperous clinics excel at educating consumers and fostering a friendly atmosphere where everyone can discover the magic of cannabis. Bud & Bloom, a California dispensary, has seized the opportunity to give its clients easier access to cannabis. The dispensary teaches its staff to successfully inform senior citizens about cannabis and offers a free weekly shuttle to and from a nearby retirement community. Bud and Bloom have profited much from the shuttle, as have the retirement community. With cannabis products, seniors can experiment with various methods of alleviation, and the store continuously attracts new clients. We would probably not be seeing such hopeful trends in elder generations using cannabis if it weren’t for the educational efforts of cannabis entrepreneurs and advocates.
Making a company as useable by as many individuals as feasible is what is meant by accessibility. This method incorporates a programmatic approach with our goals for social fairness, inclusiveness, common understandings, efficiency, and adaptability. It is a collaborative endeavor that involves the customer as the expert on their own requirements and necessitates new forms of cooperation amongst formerly segmented divisions. Accessibility benefits businesses, is required ethically, and is required by law. Building an accessible business may seem difficult and expensive, but the alternative is far more dangerous. The last thing a cannabis firm wants to do is to cause a compliance issue with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which forbids discrimination on the basis of physical and mental handicap.
The Influence of Design
Cannabis production on a large scale commercially is a relatively new enterprise, and innovators are always pushing the boundaries of accepted design conventions. Engineers have developed equipment that can adapt to different cannabis manufacturing requirements, and accessible design specifically calls for this flexibility. Businesses should think about the physical and virtual places they provide for customers, and designers should analyze the political and economic forces influencing market design conventions. Because it takes into consideration differences of opinion and variety, embraces and manages ambiguity, and acknowledges the significance of governing mentalities, accessible design is effective. One in four persons on the earth are estimated to have a handicap, and the global disability industry is estimated to be worth $13 trillion, or approximately the same as the size of China. Businesses who prioritize accessibility and make retail places accessible to a wide range of people will win the support of a vastly underserved customer group.
Everyone should take into account power relations while designing for accessibility. Workplace technologies can be built to empower employees by leveraging their skills, or they can be built to consolidate power in the hands of management. Access to cannabis is crucial for consumers in asserting their right to healthcare and autonomy. Accessibility is essential for a sustainable future, a great work environment, and a role in the community on the executive level.
Gains from Accessibility
Most Fortune 500 firms prioritize accessibility, and for good reason. Because we live in a digital age, accessibility and automation go hand in hand. Automation and intuitive software simplify operations in both production and retail. Without accessible design, we cannot attain the accuracy we aim for and the efficiency we desire. Workflow is optimized by accessible design because it anticipates problems and is easily adaptable to newly discovered needs. Businesses that incorporate accessibility are more likely to develop into creative, welcoming companies that serve a wider audience.
A recent Forrester analysis discovered a significant link between employee and customer value and accessible technologies. More productivity, lower maintenance costs, lower staff turnover, and higher employee satisfaction are all effects of accessible workplaces. Accessible websites generated more money and consumed less resources. And perhaps most significantly, companies using programmed approaches to accessibility avoided huge potential regulatory costs. Non-compliance typically costs three times as much as compliance. 2020 saw lawsuits against Highline Wellness, Prospect Farms Hemp Sales, and Jay-cannabis Z’s business Caliva for having an inaccessible website. Accessibility should be a top focus for all cannabis businesses due to these protracted and expensive legal battles.
Although accessibility is obviously important to the disabled community, it goes beyond the realm of actual disability. Businesses must take into account the complexity of individual identities when developing accessibility strategies. In order to design an environment that is accessible, we must take into account the needs of the customer in relation to their culture, language, gender, age, class, race, and handicap. Important accessibility efforts include providing closed captioning for videos, giving a place for clients and staff to communicate their pronouns, and educating clients about cannabis in plain language. In many respects, diversity and accessibility go hand in hand. Businesses with inclusive work environments are frequently more innovative and capable of producing goods that attract new clients.
Creating a Business that is Accessible
An accessibility strategy based on programs is dynamic and runs on a centralized budget. Teams developing accessibility should generally concentrate on equitable use, flexibility in use, simplicity, intuitive features, comprehensibility, tolerance for error, and the physical effort required in use. Products can serve a wider range of functions if they are designed with inclusivity and open minds.
A completely accessible website in the e-commerce space will be aware of user preferences, enable closed captioning automatically, 200-percent-zoom webpages, and offer material with wider line spacing. All visitors to a physical location should be able to move about freely and safely, have access to things from different levels, and feel welcomed and wanted when they enter a business.
Although these features might seem overwhelming, assistance is available. Numerous materials on ADA compliance for web accessibility, hiring procedures, and architectural specifications for actual commercial places are available from the U.S. Department of Justice. Comprehensive guides for digital ADA compliance in front-end development, content design, UX, and visual design are available on the U.S. government website accessibility.digital.gov. Businesses looking to enhance their digital offerings have access to expert automated accessibility services from organizations like AudioEye, accessiBe, and deque. Additionally, organizations like Motionspot and Arup assist enterprises in creating workplace, manufacturing, and retail areas that are accessible. There are numerous helpful, free online resources available that offer advice on everything from accessible typefaces to accessible furnishings for start-ups and small enterprises that are unable to afford professional accessibility services yet.
The cannabis sector has the chance to lead design in the transition to an accessible future. Collaboration and creativity have helped us create an industry, therefore we must keep up this team effort. Together, we can make cannabis a resource that is available to everyone.