Inclusive Product Writing

At Procore, it’s our mission to connect everyone in construction on a global platform, and that means writing for everyone. Writing with inclusion in mind helps us build a product that connects with more people and creates a better experience.

Best Practices

Write for All Language Levels

Using short, clear sentences and simple vocabulary helps to reach a larger audience regardless of their educational level.

Write for Accessibility

UX writing must take into account how everyone accesses information, including anyone with impaired vision or other disabilities using screen readers as well as those with slow network connections.

  • Use alt text to describe images or icons. Never use images of text.
  • Use visible text for labels, buttons, and links. Be descriptive so users know what to expect when navigating.
  • Avoid directional language, since words like “above” or “to the left” are meaningless for visually impaired users or sometimes smartphone users.

Explain Acronyms, Abbreviations, and Symbols

Acronyms and abbreviations don’t easily translate, and they can be difficult for people using screen readers to understand.

Spell out the full word and put the abbreviation in parentheses before using the abbreviation. This helps orient people using screen readers when hearing the acronym for the first time. Similarly, use alternatives for symbols (e.g. $, #).

What to Avoid

Slang, Idioms, Metaphors, and Cultural References

These types of words and phrases might be confusing for some people. Keep terminology simple so the message is as clear as possible.

Non-Inclusive Language

Gender: Although we understand there are many standard industry construction terms which reference gender, we recommend avoiding using gendered terms and roles where possible. For instance, using “they/them” pronouns as singular pronouns for users rather than “he” or “she” can help make the product experience more inclusive.

We are currently researching potential ways to update legacy construction industry terms, and will make updates here as our guidelines evolve.
Race: Avoid terminology that might have color connotations.
Disabilities: Avoid using words that refer to actions some people may not be able to do to access information.