The American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) has issued its 2012 Environmental Scanning Report, an annual report on design industry demographics and trends and a forecast on what's in store for 2012.
Report highlights include:
Glimmers of Recovery
After several years in decline, the industry as a whole is starting to see a modest recovery. The ASID Interior Design Billings Index ended 2011 with positive scores supported by renovation and remodeling projects.
According to the most recent U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report, there were approximately 40,120 employed interior designers in the United States in May 2010 - nearly a 25 percent decrease since May 2008. A comparison of Dun & Bradstreet data indicate a 16 percent decrease in the number of specialized design firms since 2008. While the industry has contracted, interior designers are finding employment as sole practitioners, self-employed consultants and in design-related businesses.
Technology continues to play a major role in the way designers work and communicate with clients and colleagues. Designers who adapt will find opportunities to build their practice and create interactive environments that respond to an increasingly high-tech, high-touch society.
A New Era for Interior Design
As the design industry evolves, interior designers will play an expanding role in addressing critical environmental and societal challenges in such areas as aging, wellness and healthcare, education and urbanization.
"There is no doubt that uncertainty in the financial markets and shifting socio-economics will continue to have implications for the interior design industry," said Randy Fiser, executive vice president and CEO for ASID. "However, from the types of buildings people will need, to the types of services they will seek, there are boundless opportunities for designers who recognize these changes, adapt and plan for the future."