Managing relationships with suppliers during Brexit
Living in a multi-national globalised world means that businesses trade very differently to how they did twenty, even ten years ago. Digging deeper into Brexit and the potential repercussions encourages discussion around sectors that may be hit the hardest.
In today’s culture, merchandise is king and materials made all over the world are used in everyday products. The UK must remind itself that Brexit could dent the supply chain of such products and so directly impact the UK market, its economy and in that regard, your business.
These uncertainties means that Brexit poses a number of challenges around manufacturing, procurement, skilled labour and affordability.
So, if you can’t control Brexit, what can you control and how can you help yourself? Here are some tips:
- Make sure that you work with people you trust.
- Take time out to look at the agreements you have in place and take advice on any terms that you’re not sure of. Ask yourself, what will be the cost to the business if this contract terminates and what impact will this have.
- Do you need to look at the structure of your business and find options to potential problems.
- Review your suppliers and open up discussions. Creating long-term relationships can be the key to opportunity.
- Focus on value rather than cost. Cost cutting can be tempting and of course, identifying savings is paramount, but adding value by assessing new opportunities will help to encourage new opportunities that may replace lost business in the event of a Brexit dip.
In terms of your contracts you should think about the law applicable to these and make sure you can enforce your contract in the UK should that be required.
If Brexit puts a question mark over the certainty of your business this may lead to difficult conversations with funders and banks. Being prepared and having a strategic plan is undoubtedly the best approach.