More user-driven innovation through design

Design has become a major competitiveness factor for enterprises and it also allows them to stand out from their competitors. Well-designed products and services are more appealing and easier to use. Design has the strongest impact on competitiveness when an enterprise has already incorporated it into its strategy and business culture.

Even though there is no exact definition of design, in a broad sense it can be understood as a comprehensive drafting and implementation process, which is based on the users’ needs and values, takes into account the user environment and is in accordance with the principle of sustainability. Design helps to speed up the development of products and services and it allows enterprises to give better consideration to customers’ needs and to transform research results into commercial products more quickly.

Design is an intangible investment

By investing in design competence, an enterprise also invests in intangible value creation. Strong design competence may manifest itself as aesthetically attractive products, easy-to-use services, a good customer experience or an appealing brand. At its best design competence means all these things.

A better customer experience is well designed

For enterprises, design is particularly important as a means of improving the customer experience. In international markets, it is essential to put the customer experience in the centre of innovation. Digitalisation puts added emphasis on the customer experience and it also creates new requirements and plenty of opportunities to use design in enterprises.

National design programme

Promoting design is part of a user-driven innovation policy. A user-driven approach highlights the relationship between design, innovations and competitiveness in which design can be considered as a bridge between the supplier and the user.

In the national design programme Design Finland, the aim is to make wider use of design competence in enterprises and the public sector through the following strategic objectives set for the year 2020:

  1. Understanding of design and participatory civil society
  2. are at a solid level. Competence, research and training are at a high level internationally and contribute to our well-being and competitiveness.
  3. Multidisciplinary design competence has strengthened our competitiveness.
  4. Design is used effectively in important growth sectors.
  5. In the public sector, design is used to develop and steer society and as a tool to promote well-being.