This study analyzes the use of design and the position of the design function in Finnish manufacturing firms. We also study the impact of design on companies business performance. The paper is based on a survey directed to the member companies of the Confederation of Finnish Industries (EK) in November-December 2005. According to the results, design use in manufacturing companies is still on a relatively low level. Design use varies clearly among analyzed companies, though. Results show that the nature of design use and the position of the design function explain the influence of design on business notably. The impact of design on business through most studied effect channels, such as increase in sales, is statistically significantly higher in those companies in which design is an integrated part of the companys core functions and strategy, and in which design is used continuously. Results also indicate that the use of design in manufacturing firms in Finland will increase in the forthcoming years (2005-2010).