If you work in a design-related industry, then you will have likely come across the term generative design before. It’s a process that’s considered the future of design, and it’s essential for those within the design industry to take full advantage of its capabilities. 

Generative design is being used across many industries, and more businesses are implementing this process to better their outcomes.

In this article, you’ll learn about what generative design is and the reasons why you should care about it. We’ll also share some tips on implementing this design process into your business.

What Is Generative Design?

Generative design is defined as a design exploration process. It works by using software where engineers and designers input their design goals and other factors such as the materials, manufacturing methods, costs, and performance requirements. 

The software then explores all possible solutions and generates alternative design options. Using AI technology, it will test and learn from each process, what works and what doesn’t work- so it’s constantly learning.

What stands out about generative design is its ability to create hundreds of outcomes that humans would likely not achieve.

Why Should You Care about Generative Design?

Generative design is the future of design itself for many industries. The global generative design market is expected to have a compound annual growth rate of over 16% between 2019-2023. 

So why should you care about generative design? Whether you’re a business, an engineer, or a designer, this type of design exploration process can provide many benefits. Here are five reasons why you should care about generative design.

It Provides a Wealth of Options

The most significant benefit of generative design is that it boasts a range of options to choose from. The more design goals and limits you add to your generative design software, the more results you acquire. Some of the parameters you could include are product size and weight restrictions or operating conditions, for example.

There’s a reason why so many are using this design exploration process, and it’s to help produce more than one or multiple designers could ever produce. However, the quality of these options might not be as consistent across the board. It still takes a considerable amount of effort on your part to sift through the available solutions to find the best one.

But what design company doesn’t want a wealth of options to pick from? It’s always better to have more than not enough, after all. Having a list of options can help you shortlist and further refine any designs that stand out.

It’s Easy to Make Changes Where Needed

With this design process, you can input however many design features, and constraints are needed to influence the outcome. As a result, it can make it easy to make any changes to the design or design options provided.

The software you use can even enable automatic updates whenever changes are required for your chosen design. This element in the process can help save a lot of time and effort on your design team’s part. This further helps quicken the creative process for all those involved along the way.

It’s important to utilize software in your business that is going to aid you rather than hinder your efforts. Not only does it help you make changes, but it also helps get those creative juices flowing when you encounter a design block. 

Helps Cut Down on Costs

Human labor is always more costly than what computers can provide. With a generative design software in place, you can reduce costs significantly, and for some, that can be helpful if human resources are limited anyway. 

It helps designers on your team work more efficiently and quicker, which can ultimately lead to more job satisfaction. The software produces a large volume of design solutions without the need for multiple designers on board. The budget you had to go towards extra designers and labor costs can now go to other areas of the process that need it.

Design testing can also be an expensive part of the design process, and generative design doesn’t require the same levels of testing that traditional methods would use. There’s an opportunity to save a lot in time and effort, which can benefit many businesses, particularly those with small businesses or start-ups.

Creates Better Products for Customers

Customer satisfaction is something you want to nail with every product or service you provide. According to SuperOffice, 49% of buyers have made impulse purchases when they’ve received a more personalized experience. 

As a business, it’s important to make the best possible products for your customers, and generative design software can help with that. Some of the benefits that come with having this software in place include:

  • Identifies problem areas to repair and improve in the design process.
  • Provides a variety of options that could present something new and unique for your customers.
  • Learns from every decision and process you make. It betters itself each and every time.

Better products will influence the success of your business and where it positions itself within your industry. It can help put yourself ahead of the competition and can elevate you to new levels of opportunity that perhaps weren’t possible prior.

Provides an Opportunity for All Businesses, Big and Small

Generative design software presents an opportunity for growth and improvement across all business types. Regardless of whether you’re a big or small organization, there are some possibilities for those who want to make more profitable designs and solutions.

The design industry ends up favoring large-scale designs, which can often leave small businesses out of the picture. Generative design software can help open more doors for those with smaller budgets and capabilities when it comes to the level of production they can provide. 

Having smaller businesses thrive in the design industry can help provide a variety in products not just on a local level but also on a national and global one.

Tips for Implementing This Design Process into Your Business

When it comes to implementing this design process, it’s essential to consider a variety of factors. That way, you can address any teething issues early on.

Pick the Right Design Software

There are a few generative design software options to choose from. When it comes to picking the software, it’s important to consider your requirements. AutoDesk, as an example, provides a pay-as-you-go flexible option, which would likely be most suited for businesses that don’t want to be tied down into an expensive contract.

nTopology is another great choice that allows complete control over the optimization process and all of its outputs. They leverage generative tools and create custom workflows that are tailored to your unique requirements as a business. Their generative design guide explains in more detail how their software works and the features available.

There are a lot of different options out there, so it’s always beneficial to shop around.

Know Your Parameters

Before investing in generative design software, it’s useful to know your parameters because not every software service may offer those inputs. The more versatile the software is, the more options it will likely churn out. Some parameters might be more vital to include than others, so this is something to be decided prior to picking a software.

Ensure Collaboration Is Still Utilized

Even with software in place, collaboration is still important. There still needs to be communication between departments. This helps avoid any miscommunication or mistakes being made in the design process.

It’s also worth thinking about the design outcomes that the software provides and that they’ll still need tweaking. Do you have enough designers and engineers in-house to help with the volume this software provides, or will you need to hire more?

Whilst technology and computers save a lot of time and money, humans are still needed to control them and make the various changes required.

Manage Your Expectations

Generative design software might not cater to all your expectations, so it’s important to manage these when choosing this option in design. 

There are some solutions or many that you might not be able to deliver on, leading to less of a need for this software. You may also lack the resources to sift through the thousands of results that it generates, so it’s good to be aware of how much you can handle.


It’s clear that generative design can influence and change the way many businesses, designers, and engineers conduct their design processes. Having a generative design software in place can be cost-effective and reveal more opportunities through design options. 

It can also help introduce more products to the market and will likely shake up the design industry substantially.