A recent report has revealed that a whopping 80% of SMEs were not ready for Brexit on 29th March.
Now, as the final extension has been granted by the EU, of 31st October (aptly perhaps, Halloween) SMEs are being urged to get themselves ready.
So the question is, are you Brexit, and most importantly no deal Brexit, ready? Currently, the general consensus is that the UK will leave the EU without a deal.
In another report, half of SMEs admitted that a no deal Brexit will negatively impact their business.
What Will a No Deal Mean For Your Business?
Mike Cherry, Federation of Small Businesses Chairman, recently said, “It is obvious that our small firms are not prepared or ready for a chaotic no deal Brexit and the impact that it will have on their businesses.”
Will you, like a reportedly, 35% delay expansion and growth plans?
Mr Cherry continues, “If you sell your products to the EU, buy goods from the EU or if your business relies on staff from the EU, you now see this outcome as a clear and present threat to your business.”
Halloween is full of enough ghosts, ghouls and gruesomeness, without inadequate Brexit preparations adding to your horror! You need to be ready.
Therefore, with this in mind, here are some key areas to consider if your business trades within the EU as 31st October Brexit deadline fast approaches:
Do you need to stockpile materials to see you through the end of the year if imported from the EU? If yes, how will you fund this?
Will you be paid under the same terms under a no deal? Do you have enough cashflow to accommodate overdue invoices?
EORI (European Union Registration and Identification) number - to import goods from the EU into the UK under a no deal Brexit you will need to apply for an Economic Operator Registration and Identification number.
Make yourself aware of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) trading rule, in particular the charges made to WTO countries. The UK is already a WTO member but it will need to renegotiate its terms.
Contingency plans - prepare and cost a ‘worst case’ scenario. Can you look at opening up your overseas market outside the EU, internationally, looking to export to non EU countries?
Do you employ staff members from the EU? Research working visas and recruitment law changes.
Costs and duty for imports and exports are likely to increase. Have you sufficient working capital and cashflow to cover increased upfront costs?