15th February 2019
How do you prepare when you don’t know what you are preparing for? It’s a question which we have been asked regularly over recent months as rumours about the final shape of Brexit swirl one way and then the other. At the time of writing (14th February) Brexit is a scant six weeks away and it can seem as though we are still in Donald Rumsfeld territory, full of known unknowns and unknown unknowns but with few known knowns to guide our way.
Nevertheless; behind the scenes the Government, trade bodies and other associations including the FSB and IoD have been working hard in order to optimise outcomes.
With the clock ticking and uncertainty continuing to surround Brexit, we are encouraging our clients to prepare for all possible outcomes and gain as much known and factual information as possible.
The “Preparing for EU Exit” is the central Government website for guidance aimed at businesses and individuals. Government preparations also look at a potential ‘no deal’ scenario. To this end they have published a detailed series of ‘technical notices’ and a Partnership Pack with information designed to help businesses with their own contingency planning.
Looking on the positive side the Government has also developed a tool specifically for businesses to help them prepare for the UK exiting the EU. It asks businesses seven questions which cover core operation areas that may be impacted. Depending on responses provided, the toolkit draws together guidance which is most relevant to the business’s individual circumstances. You can find out:
We are of course also doing what we can to support our clients at this time, keeping abreast of developments and suggesting ways in which businesses can undertake preparatory work so that they are in the best shape to take advantage of the final exit deal.
Sometimes this means helping businesses to take stock of existing business practices, perhaps streamlining and automating accounts processes in order to free up time which can then be used in Brexit preparations. And with the Making Tax Digital for VAT initiative commencing on 1 April, updating accounts processes is less of a ‘nice to do’ and more of a ‘must do’ anyway. Other businesses may benefit from guidance on areas which are specific to their sector such as employing EU Citizens or areas of consideration for importers/exporters.
As Thompson Jenner Partner Simon Lewis commented “The first step in planning is to understand where your business currently stands and then to consider how it could be impacted by any changes. Even if you think you are not immediately impacted by Brexit, it is always worth undertaking a review of existing plans and goals”
If you would like to find out more or meet to discuss the business planning services which we are able to provide, please contact Simon Lewis or one of our specialist Partners on 01392 258553 or 01395 279521 to arrange a free initial meeting.