Preparing your business for Brexit

Image of a sand timer with the GB and Eu flag in the background

If you have a small business, then the possibility of Brexit on the 31st October may be causing you concern over how to prepare so that any impact on your business can be kept to a minimum. Here’s what you can do to get ready.

 

Changes to regulations

It is imperative to understand what regulatory changes might come about as a result of Brexit. For example, if you import and export goods you need to know what additional documentation might be required, such as an EORI number, who should be making the import declarations, what the tax rate and duty will be etc.

You can get guidance on steps you may need to take for your business as a result of Brexit by going to the gov.uk website here and clicking on ‘Check what you need to do’. You will be asked a series of questions and then be given relevant information relating to your individual circumstances.

The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has a free resource section for small businesses providing information on Brexit and how you may be affected. You can access this via the FSB’s website here.

If your industry has a governing body, then check with them as to what their advice is regarding Brexit. For example, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) issued this notice that sets out their latest expectations for firms on Brexit.

The British Chambers of Commerce have a Brexit Checklist on their website here that asks you questions in each area you may need to consider so that you can formulate a plan going forward. It covers several topics from workforce to intellectual property and much more.

 

Get professional advice

If you are not sure of the accounting or tax implications, then speak to the relevant professional services that can help, such as your accountant.

Don’t know if you should have a Brexit clause in your contracts? Get legal support so that you can make an informed decision about what’s right for your company.

Worried about your investments? Have a review with your Life Centred Financial Planner to talk through your concerns so together you can decide whether you need to amend your financial plan for the future or not.

 

Manage the risks

Does your current company risk plan have Brexit incorporated? Have you considered the outcome of various possible scenarios so that you can put mitigations in place to secure the future of your company?

For example, what if your sales were reduced, or there were export/import delays affecting stock, or if the pound drops in value, what does that mean for your business?

 

Cash flow

Several factors could affect your cash flow after Brexit, such as currency fluctuations. Closely monitor your cash flow forecasts and as part of your risk planning look at how specific scenarios will impact them. Look to identify any vulnerabilities and consider how you can manage those.

 

Supply chain

Will possible border delays affect your supply chain? What plans are your suppliers putting in place post-Brexit? Are they quoting longer lead times? How will the cost of their goods be affected by any currency fluctuations?

Speak to your key suppliers and openly discuss what challenges Brexit might bring and how you can work together to continue operations with as minimal disruption as possible.

 

Don’t wait

Start planning now, don’t be caught out by not having the correct documentation in place or not anticipating the financial impact on your company.

There may be some unknowns but for the areas where you can start processes, or put new systems in place, get going now.

The better prepared you are, the easier it will be to manage the impact of Brexit on your business.

 

Further information

If you found this information useful, you may also want to check out the following:

 

MRA help individuals, businesses and families achieve the best quality of life they can with the resources they have. MRA specialise in corporate solutions, cash-flow analysis, taxation, debt management, savings and investments, lifestyle planning and much more.

Business Consultants based in East Sussex we service clients across the South East, Sussex and Kent, including smaller towns such as Ashford, Battle, Bexhill, Bodiam, Brighton & Hove, Cranbrook, Crowborough, Eastbourne, Hailsham, Hastings, Heathfield, Herstmonceux, Lewes, Mayfield, Newhaven, Rye, Seaford, Sevenoaks, Tenterden, Tonbridge and Tunbridge Wells.

 

Sources:

https://www.gov.uk/brexit

https://www.gov.uk/prepare-export-from-uk-after-brexit

https://www.gov.uk/eori

https://www.fsb.org.uk/standing-up-for-you/brexit-home/brexit-hub/resources

https://www.fca.org.uk/news/press-releases/fca-sets-out-latest-expectations-firms-brexit

https://www.britishchambers.org.uk/page/business-brexit-checklist