It’s been over a year in the making and it is now official: Opquast is an ‘entreprise à mission’ or a ‘purpose-driven company’. So, what does that mean? When the Pacte law came into existence in France, it became possible to modify a company’s articles of association to allow it to have a social or environmental purpose, in addition to the profit-making activity. To do this, the company defines a raison d’être and missions that align everyone in the company with the same principles of action. In the case of Opquast, the raison d’être is to make the web better, for everyone.
The missions are as follows:
- Act to enable as many people as possible to access web services, regardless of their profile: age, skills, languages, physical or mental abilities, culture, hardware used, and connection methods
- Improve web services by simplifying and facilitating their use in the private, public and professional spheres, and their development as a vehicle for social and environmental transformation of societies and organisations
- Help professionals and organisations to develop their skills and impact on the quality, accessibility and sobriety of websites and digital tools
- Train, federate, support and develop an ecosystem of humans and organisations committed to improving the web
I will come back to all these points in detail.
With regard to Opquast, while the official change is very recent, the mission to be beneficial for everyone goes back a long way. For more than 20 years, Opquast has been a company that operates almost as a public function, producing knowledge commons.
For some companies, switching to a mission-based enterprise is an opportunity to find meaning and a common mission. In the case of Opquast, it was simply a unique opportunity to statutorily and officially describe what we have decided to do since our inception: to be useful, produce helpful content, train, guide, support, and above all, improve the web for the betterment of everyone.
But let’s go back to the raison d’être and the missions.
Making the web better. This raison d’être describes very well what we want to do and it has become the Opquast community tagline. Although it seems obvious, adding for everyone is a way of saying that our goal is not aimed at a specific category of users but all users.
The raison d’être is echoed in the company’s first mission, to act to enable as many people as possible to access web services regardless of their profile: age, skills, languages, physical or mental abilities, culture, hardware used, and connection methods.
This one adopts, in a fairly straightforward way, the universal approach used by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C).
We don’t know the languages you speak, the technologies you master and the materials you use, we don’t know if you are a person with a disability or if you consider yourself a person with a disability. We don’t know who you are and we don’t have to ask you because that doesn’t matter: our professional duty as a site producer is to take care of you and help you access web content and services.
As for the second mission, it comes directly from our love of the web: to improve web services by simplifying and facilitating their use in the private, public and professional spheres and their development as a vector of social and environmental transformation of societies and organisations.
The third and fourth missions reflect our choice to work on the human aspects rather than the technical: helping professionals and organisations to develop their skills and their impact on the quality, accessibility and sobriety of websites and digital tools.
This means that Opquast’s privileged material, its major lever, is people and their skills. The future of web quality assurance will be first and foremost human before technical, and the understanding of issues will come before the application of rules.
In this mission, we also talk about digital sobriety because we are convinced that web quality assurance is a very relevant approach to act on this subject. A website that is visible, easy to use, efficient, fast, effective, secure, and provides good content and services, will be used faster and more easily, will require less powerful tools, and will cause less non-quality costs, whether financial, human or energy.
The last mission is to train, federate, support and develop an ecosystem of humans and organisations committed to improving the web. Opquast and its missions will have only limited impact if they are not carried and multiplied by the community. It is up to Opquast and its teams to be there to support and help those who want to improve the web.
There you have it. We are here and we know why. If these missions seem meaningful to you, we would be delighted to work with you, or simply have a conversation.