Theresa May will trigger Article 50 and officially start the Brexit process on Wednesday 29th March. It is said that the UK must prepare for years, if not decades, of negotiating.
So what does this mean for British business? The pound slipped against both the dollar and euro as the Article 50 date was announced. Businesses are left with reports of economic turbulence and cost increases ahead. Will it mean job losses? What can we do to prepare for - or offset - rising costs?
The only certainty is uncertainty – for now at least. Back in July the Bank of England confirmed that Brexit had already started to impact the financial stability of the UK, with the Independent reporting that 49% of British businesses reported feeling pessimistic about the economic outlook for 2017. The banking sector and property industry in particular suffered, but what about the wider business landscape?
Fast forward eight months and we know that some office services suppliers have already increased prices due to the Brexit decision. Major players point to a weak pound and rising costs, but Brexit has also been an opportunity to raise margins.
With over 30 years experience in the office supplies industry, I have seen the market fall and recover many times. There is inflation in the market and suppliers will implement price increases. But rather than accept rises of 6% or 7% whatever the reason, it is possible to save money (on average we save 20%).
When approaching contract management or renewal it is imperative to:
The UK is entering extremely long trade negotiations and unlike the exit deal, which is limited to two years, there is no deadline for a trade agreement. So while we won’t know the precise trade implications for years, there is no need to wait - you can reduce costs now.
Updated March 2017
Footnote from September 2016 post:
A recent Markit/CIPS survey showed that business activity in services and manufacturing shrank in July - at its fastest rate since the global financial crisis in 2009. However the August figures are bouncing back: the service sector saw its largest month-on-month increase in the survey’s 20-year history, while manufacturing was at its highest in 10 months, as work that had previously been postponed began.
Book a meeting to find out how you can reduce costs, spend smarter and achieve long-term savings.get in touch
One of our core values at Red Herring is being a business for good. This means that we raise money by donating 10% of all fees earned to the Multiple Sclerosis Society. After a recent diagnosis, this cause is close to our hearts and we are proud to support the UK’s leading MS charity that provides practical help today and the hope of a cure tomorrow for everyone living with multiple sclerosis (MS) nationwide.
Over 100,000 people in the UK have multiple sclerosis (MS). It’s unpredictable, and different for everyone. It’s often painful and exhausting, and can cause problems with how people walk, move, see, think and feel. It can make it hard for people to work, and do the things they enjoy. But it doesn’t have to be this way.
The MS Society is a community of people living with MS, scientists, campaigners, volunteers and fundraisers. We understand what life’s like with MS, and we support each other through the highs, lows and everything in between. And we’re driving research into more – and better – treatments. For everyone.
Together, we are strong enough to stop MS.
To find out more about MS please visit: www.mssociety.org.uk