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What is design?

Design is a discipline that evolves, and we often find that people new to the discipline do not fully understand the scope and power of design, so we thought it might be useful to share what WE thing design is…

Design is the enhancement of an idea, product or service to make it better suited to the world in which it exists. This often means centering on the needs of the end user to allow the product or service to best fit into their life, whether is to better satisfy a functional need, to add beauty, joy or pride to that person’s life .

Design is about adding long lasting real value for the customer, so that they love the result, come back for more and tell their friends about it. This is in contrast to most advertising, which is about the exaggeration of a perceived value to encourage someone at the point of purchase. Both have value to businesses, but good design is an investment with longer term returns, provided through customer satisfaction rather than customer anxiety.

Design, we believe, is about adding value to people’s lives and seeing a financial return and a business grow as a result. At its best, design is about improving the world around us, including people, and adding pleasure to the small things in life.

You can see the power of design by looking at Apple. When Steve Jobs returned to a failing company and put design at the centre of the business strategy he turned it into the biggest company in the world (momentarily at least).