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7 Ways AI is Reshaping Design Systems in Life Sciences

01 Mar 2024
Picture this. You are designing a web portal and scouting for fresh ideas for the perfect layout for your digital properties—step in a capable artificial intelligence (AI) design assistant that constantly brings innovative, data-driven insights to the table, enabling you to design at scale and at speed unimaginable before—this is not the setting for a futuristic novel but the palpable reality of a rapidly evolving design landscape.
Across the realm of user experience design, AI is playing multifaceted roles, significantly impacting various aspects of our creative processes and changing the way we conceptualize, create, and experience design.
Let’s delve deeper into the transformative role of AI in design systems. 
Why is there a need to move beyond traditional design approaches?
The conventional design approach has primarily focused on combining varied perspectives along with aesthetics, form, function, and usability. However, with the integration of AI, design becomes not just about developing digital or physical products but facilitating interactions between humans and smart systems. This is where the major shift is happening—design is addressing targeted challenges, while ensuring AI serves the needs of the users in a continuously better way—this shift necessitates a new approach in design that incorporates broader human-AI interactions.
But here’s the catch. Traditional design tools and approaches are falling short in dealing with the complexities of AI-driven technology. Companies need to work toward robust AI transformation strategies and innovative design toolkits to stay ahead. 
Some key scenarios where AI will serve as an invaluable tool 
01. Generative design 
In contrast to traditional design, generative design does not warrant any prior knowledge from the designer or engineer. Typically, the designer collaborates with AI algorithms to generate numerous potential designs by defining objectives and constraints. Some of the benefits of generative design include accelerated design timelines, a wide array of design choices, the ability to conduct multiple iterations, and the ability to monitor experience development in a more informed and anticipatory way, throughout the product life cycle.
Concept exploration: With AI, designers can generate a whole gamut of relevant design concepts based on specified parameters and constraints across brands and project needs. This ability helps businesses explore a variety of possibilities quickly and efficiently, while exponentially enhancing design optimization efforts and developing design scenarios faster.
Optimisation: AI algorithms can optimize designs based on predefined criteria, such as material usage, cost, and performance. This means that designers are better equipped to create more efficient and effective realworld solutions.
02. Design assistance 
Beyond concept generation and optimization, AI can also contribute to design assistance. Mirroring their real-world counterparts, these virtual design assistants streamline design processes by providing real-time assistance and continuous feedback. This translates to increased productivity by bridging the gap between conceptualization and tangible outcomes. And automation is just one small part of it.
Intelligent suggestions: AI tools can provide real-time suggestions and insights during the design process. This could include recommendations for layouts, color schemes, and other design elements built for life sciences, exponentially improving overall design output. 
Usability analysis: Such tools can help analyse and predict evolving user behaviour, enabling designers to create interfaces and experiences that are more intuitive and user-friendly. 
03. Automation
Automation of repetitive tasks is not an untrodden path. When it comes to design workflows, AI-enabled automation can effectively manage routine, monotonous tasks. Reducing the likelihood of human errors, automated tasks not only ensure consistency and accuracy but also enhance scalability.
Layout and formatting: AI can help automate typical time-consuming tasks such as layout design and formatting, giving designers more time and space to focus on the creative aspects of their design projects.
Content generation: AI-powered tools are already marking their impact in generating content and building comprehensive content frameworks from text input to concept imagery. Tools like DALL-E, MidJourney, and DeepArt have demonstrated their capabilities in creating visual designs and artwork using text-based descriptions.
04. Personalization
AI is a powerful tool for personalization at scale, transcending the one-size-fits-all approach. With the potential to tailor design elements to user’s preferences and needs, personalization will be the cornerstone of user experience design.  
Adaptive interfaces: With AI, design systems can hyper-adapt across individual user preferences. But what does this mean for life sciences companies? It can help them deliver more personalized and engaging user experiences to their customers. 
Dynamic content: Design systems can leverage AI to dynamically adjust content and layouts based on user behavior and context, thus, enabling more tailored experiences across engagement efforts. 
Here’s how a pharma major reduced its time-to-market with an efficient global design system.  
05. Prototyping and testing
Integrating AI into prototyping and testing is transforming the way designers identify and refine inefficiencies to create successful experiences and products.  
Rapid prototyping:  AI can accelerate the prototyping phase—automation and the generation of multiple prototypes allow designers to test ideas more quickly across different stakeholders.  
A/B testing:  “Data-driven decision-making” is not just a buzz phrase. With evolving customer preferences, AI can help garner actionable insights on user interactions through optimized A/B testing. This helps designers make data-driven decisions to implement design variations for better engagement.
06. Design ethics and accessibility
With inclusivity, sustainability, and transparency taking centre stage in conversations, user experience design isn’t untouched. Design ethics and accessibility have become part of many companies’ practical commercial strategies. And with the integration of AI, navigating ethical dilemmas has become crucial.  
Bias detection: AI tools can be leveraged to detect and mitigate human biases across design efforts, ensuring that the products and interfaces created are inclusive and accessible to the diverse user groups companies intend to target. 
Accessibility compliance: Additionally, AI can assist design teams to adhere to accessibility standards in design systems, resulting in more inclusive and usable designs. 
07. Continuous learning and improvement 
AI systems based on continuous learning models remain relevant and accurate over time due to their ability to adapt to new, dynamic information or trends. This can prove especially useful in the design landscape, given the increasing focus on personalization and improved user experience.   
Feedback loops: With AI, accessing and analyzing user feedback and performance data has become much quicker and easier. These targeted insights can help designers implement changes for the continuous improvement of design systems. 
Adaptive systems: AI for design systems can and will become more adaptive over time—the learning models will assimilate information from our individual user interactions and designers will continue to evolve their methodologies to better meet the user needs. 
What lies ahead…
As discussed above, AI’s role is not just limited to automation; it is becoming central across systems, services, and business models. This warrants a multi-faceted design approach that encompasses commercial, ethical, and cultural dimensions. Design leaders must work toward proactively forging AI’s integration into the world of design while ensuring transparency, data privacy, and fairness. 
The designers will be required to collaborate with interdisciplinary stakeholders including AI specialists and ethicists to create holistic and desirable human experiences. Their role will witness a shift toward strategic advisors, defining not just how design works but also its purpose. 
Final Words
A whole new vista is unfolding as businesses explore the limitless possibilities of AI. The next phase in bleeding-edge user experiences has just begun, and we are at the forefront, heralding positive and impactful changes in the world of design augmented and sculpted by artificial intelligence.  
If you would like to know how you can streamline design systems and processes to deliver exceptional customer experiences and accelerate growth, schedule a consultation today


Vittal Iyer
Vittal Iyer