It is apparent that our final exit from the EU, 1 January 2021, will disrupt the movement of goods, back and forth, while transport links and customs authorities adjust to the new reality.
Hopefully, readers that are directly affected – with customers or suppliers in the EU – will already be aware of the customs red tape that they will need to comply with in the new year. If not, we suggest you take a look at the wealth of detailed guidance on the GOV.UK website; follow the COVID links for UK businesses.
But in anticipation of disruption in supply lines, what further action can we take in the closing weeks of 2020 to minimise the effects on our businesses in 2021?
- Contact your key suppliers and ask if they can fulfil your usual orders in the first quarter of 2021. Be sure to ask if their supplies are coming from the EU. If their response is less than positive start looking for UK or non-EU suppliers who can meet your needs.
- Contact your key customers. Ask if they will be affected by the EU changes. In particular, are they expecting to increase, maintain or reduce purchases from your company in the first quarter of 2021. Time will be an issue to replace any projected loss of sales with new business, but at least your forward thinking will flag up a possible challenge and give you time to brainstorm your options.
- When you have considered the above, revise your business plans. Flex the numbers in anticipation of variable outcomes to see if these outcomes are going to seriously impact solvency, cash-flow or funding.
We can help. Contact us now if you would like to undertake an appropriate review of these issues. A little planning now may help to reduce future, negative impacts on your business…