Design Council Support and Business Survival and Growth

Report
02/02/2018

Download PDF

Inside you will find

  • Research into the impact of design support on small & medium firms (SMEs)
  • A summary of the research conducted
  • Information on the methodology used

This will interest

  • Small and medium businesses

Businesses supported by Design Council over a ten year period survive longer and grow faster than average UK businesses, according to independent research.

This research, independently conducted by the Enterprise Research Centre for Design Council, found that over the long term, small and medium-sized firms (SMEs) supported by Design Council grew by around 40% between 2005 and 2015, more than double that of those who had no design support.

The key findings of the report were: 

  • Design Council-supported businesses survive longer: 91% of businesses we supported were still trading after 5 years, compared to 49% of a control group.
  • Design Council support appears to have played a key role: even after accounting for wider government support programmes accessed by participating businesses, 85% of those supported by Design Council survived compared to 48% in our control group samples.
  • Design Council-supported businesses grow twice as much: over the long term the DC-supported firms (either with or without BEIS support) grew by around 40% between 2008 and 2016, more than double that of the control group. Considering that the control group acts as the counterfactual this suggests a relatively strong impact from DC support, not only on survivability, but also on employment growth prospects.
  • Design Council-supported businesses are more productive: the fact that turnover growth exceeded growth in employment amongst DC-supported firms suggests that there was an increase in productivity amongst these survivor firms (i.e. it means that firms are becoming more productive without shedding labour; these firms are often termed ‘growth heroes’). 

News & opinion

The Design Economy 2018 – Introducing the case studies Design Council commissioned seven case studies to sit alongside the economic analysis and survey from the Design Economy 2018, bringing to life how some firms are using design. We commissioned seven case studies to bring to life how some firms are using design in a systematic or strategic way.

News — 14/09/2018

Sarah Jones-Morris: A landscape architect on a mission to cure our cities through design In the next article in our Leading Women in Design series, Sarah discusses her passion for striving to create healthier cities, how street trees have a huge impact on our health, and muses on why Vitruvius is still relevant today. In the next article in our Leading Women in Design series, Sarah discusses her passion for striving to create healthier cities.

Feature — 10/09/2018

Why design is integral to the future of UK exports Design will play a major role if we are to increase to reach the government’s ambition of raising exports as a proportion of GDP by 5%. Design will play a major role if we are to increase to reach the government’s ambition of raising exports as a proportion of GDP by 5%.

News — 24/08/2018

Cany Ash: urban storyteller and architectural entrepreneur Cany discusses why women need to take ‘just’ and ‘only’ out of their vocabulary, and how diversity is in fact about ‘interculturalism’ as opposed to ‘multiculturalism’. Why women need to take ‘just’ and ‘only’ out of their vocabulary, and the difference between ‘multiculturalism’ and ‘interculturalism’.

Feature — 15/08/2018

Resources