If you own a multinational business that’s based in the UK, there’s no doubt that Brexit represents an unmitigated nightmare. After all, the uncertainty surrounding Britain’s exit from the EU shows no sign of abating any time soon, whilst the spectre of a no-deal withdrawal continues to loom large on the horizon.
Even if Boris Johnson is able to force his Brexit deal through the House Commons and extradite Britain from the EU on January 31st, 2020, the UK would have to enter into another (and potentially even longer) set of talks to determine future trading relationships.
In the event of a no-deal, firms would lose access to a large and highly lucrative market, whilst also sacrificing their free trade agreements with in excess of 80 countries across the globe. But how can businesses prepare for Brexit, in a way that protects their rights and their commercial interests?
- Seek Advice to Safeguard Immigrant Members of Staff
There’s no doubt that immigration has been weaponised as part of the Brexit debate, despite the fact that EU nationals tend to play a functional role in our economy and underpin public services in the NHS.
If your business happens to employ a large number of immigrants, you will have undoubtedly suffered as a result of Brexit was potentially witnessing an increased rate of employee turnover as a result.
To negate this, you’ll need to take proactive steps towards safeguarding your employees, by understanding your own rights as an employer and providing advice to staff members who are unsure of their future.
To achieve this, you should consider liaising with relevant legal experts such as Withers, whilst also keeping a keen eye on Brexit developments as they unfold.
- Revisit Your Overseas Expansion Plans
For businesses developing a viable growth plan, expansion into the EU marketplace represented a logical and lucrative step.
However, leaving the Union will mean that such a move is no longer as viable in the long-term, despite the fact that the UK will adapt all EU law into its own legislature before repealing specific acts over time.
Even if the UK leaves the EU with an amicable deal, its access to the rest of the world’s markets will be reduced in the short-term.
This means that firms must refocus their international growth plans, by adopting a more conservative approach and adapting to the markets as they continue to evolve post-Brexit.
- Review Your Recruitment Strategy
On a similar note, there can be no doubt that multinational businesses will take a financial hit in the months following Brexit (regardless of how the withdrawal eventually unfolds).
Economists have even warned that Boris Johnson’s Brexit plan could cost the UK economy up to £20 billion a year, and it’s obvious that small to medium-sized firms will bear the brunt of this.
With this in mind, it would be wise to review your recruitment policy in the build-up to Brexit, as you look to consolidate your plans and avoid hiring non-strategic members of staff for the foreseeable future.
Make no mistake; it’s agile and adaptable business models that will thrive in the current climate, particularly as firms remain in the dark about how Brexit will unfold.