2024 State of Design & Make Report

Key themes for AECO

AECO leaders and experts are optimistic about the global landscape, as well as their companies’ resilience, preparedness, performance, investment, and level of digital transformation—a noticeable change from Autodesk’s 2023 State of Design & Make report.

Percentage of respondents who agree with statements: 1. My company is well prepared to handle unforeseen future macroeconomic and geopolitical changes. 2. The future global landscape feels more uncertain now than 3 years ago. 5-point scale. Top two = agree.

Architecture services firms are especially confident about the future

Optimism returns

“Having experienced the global challenges in the last few years, we’ve now established ways to hedge risks more effectively, such as pricing quotations based on an understanding of price fluctuations and avoiding risky areas in the supply chain.”

– Eiichiro Okano, Managing Executive Officer, Digital Transformation Division, Obayashi Corporation, a construction and general contracting firm

Axis: Percentage of respondents who say investments will increase in each area.
Survey question: How do you think your company or organization’s investment in these areas will shift in the next 3 years? 5- point scale. Top two = increase.

Top priorities for future investments differ among AECO segments

Cost control

Percent of respondents who selected “very mature” in each process. 
Survey question: In your company or organization, how mature are the following? 5-point scale.

What does digital maturity mean for AECO companies?

Digital maturity

Digitally mature AECO companies are further along than their peers on some of the industry’s most important initiatives.

Survey question: What are the use cases for artificial intelligence (AI) in your company or organization? Select all that apply.

Beyond productivity, AI use cases vary for AECO segments

All-in on AI

“Generative design is where we see the greatest potential for AI. But even though AI could do the constraints and input for you, the question is, ‘Are we going to be able to trust it in a production environment, and how thoroughly will it have to be checked?’”

– Todd Rogers, BIM Manager, Walter P Moore, a consulting engineering firm

Survey question: What technical or digital skills do you believe your company or organization will be prioritizing when hiring over the next 3 years? Select all that apply.

AECO skills of the future


With the rapid evolution of technology in the AECO space, organizations are prioritizing digital skills for future hires.

AECO spotlight: ALEC Contracting & Engineering

Talent crunch

Severin Tenim, head of strategic projects and development at ALEC, says that hiring and retaining engineering talent continues to be a challenge—particularly when it comes to linking digital tools with engineering and construction processes.

Survey question: How influential is the next generation in pressuring your company or organization to create and meet sustainability goals? 5-point scale. Top option = very influential.

The younger generation’s influence on sustainability

Sustainability actions

Around one-third of AECO respondents say the next generation is “very influential” in motivating their companies to take steps to be more sustainable.

AECO spotlight: Nexii

Business health

Canadian firm Nexii was the first construction and manufacturing company to achieve the TRUE Zero Waste Gold certification in North America, for its manufacturing plant in Squamish, Vancouver.

Explore themes


Business resilience

Digitization boosts business resilience amid continued challenges.



Companies tackle talent challenges with upskilling, digitization, and sustainability initiatives.



Business value drives sustainability actions.

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