Entries for the 2015 Good Design Awards opened today, with the addition of two new categories that will give the awards a more macro outlook on the role of good design.

As well as the product design categories which include consumer electronics and domestic appliances, two new standalone categories have been added: Social Innovation and Business Design Leadership.

The Social Innovation category will look at the role of design within not-for-profits designing social services, and Business Design Leadership will acknowledge how businesses utilise design at a strategic level in their business model.

The Business Design Leadership category means that retailers, as well as suppliers, could now be in the running to win a Good Design Award.

Dr Brandon Gien, CEO of Good Design Australia, explained for a business to do well in this category it must realise that design is not just about making aesthetically pleasing and functional products, it can be embedded in the actual business model from a strategic point of view and ensure that products and services are connected to the business strategy.

Design thinking in business is, “understanding that you can’t just kind of sprinkle design over a product and then it expect it to turn your business around. You really need to look at it holistically,” Gien says.

“Apple is the classic example, they live and breathe design and it’s not just a sugar coating process that they apply to their services, it’s actually embedded in everything that the company does including the way they assert strategy and formulate their own business plans.”

Over the years, the appliance and consumer electronics industries have been major supporters of the awards, formerly known as the Australian International Design Awards.

Last year Dyson’s AM06 Cool fan won Best in Category award for the Domestic Appliances and the nifty mobile BACtrack breathalyser won the Consumer Electronics category of the 2014 Good Design Awards.

In April an independent jury will spend four days assessing the entries to determine which are deserving of the Good Design Selection and which product or service will be named the best in category.

In product design, the judging criteria includes form, function, safety, sustainability and innovation.

“Those are very broad criteria,” Gien says. “But really what it boils down to is ‘what is so fantastic about this product?’”

The judges will assess which products have been considered from every angle and provide consumers with a real benefit and a great user experience.

Entries close on 20 March 2015 ahead of a Gala awards ceremony held in Sydney on 28 May 2015 which caps off the Good Design Festival and coincides with the Vivid Sydney festival.