Preparing for Uncertainty
Posted on Monday, December 10, 2018 by Jen Wright — No comments
We are operating in an unusual economy, GDP is in the plus, the size of the economy has reverted and surpassed pre-downturn figures and we are enjoying our lowest rate of unemployment since 1975, but these positive economic indicators are being overshadowed and somewhat controlled by the political uncertainty of Brexit, and what that will mean in real terms for our businesses.
Forecasts don’t scream that we are heading for an immediate post Brexit crash, but caution in investment decisions, uncertainty and fear for EU nationals as well as inevitable inflation, warn that there could be mid to long term crisis on the horizon, and this seems to be at the forefront of business minds.
And so it should be. Some early statistics indicate that up to half of UK employed, highly skilled EU Nationals are considering leaving the UK post Brexit, and other reports show similar figures for unskilled EU National which could leave an unfillable hole in our labour market and ripple effect in our economy.
While we are used to managing skill shortage in highly skilled and niche sectors like IT, Accountancy, Engineering and Healthcare, we are now facing an unprecedented gap in the unskilled market too, and we need to be aware of the the impact this could have on all sectors, and prepare now to future proof against Brexit.
What can you do?
- Who is working for you? You will need to know the rights and status of all your EU workers to ensure you are employing them legally after the UK leaves the EU, start doing the leg work now to understand your employee demographic
- Identify any skills gaps in your business
- Create a plan to address these skills gaps and staff shortages? Is this something that can be addressed internally? Do you need to recruit, train or look at other solutions?
- Plan early to limit the impact
- Uncertainty breeds fear, open the lines of communication and educate your workforce effectively on the changes caused by Brexit, (seek industry specific advice if needed)
- Reassurance that you are aware of the potential issues and being proactive about solutions as a company will alleviate this uncertainty and prevent knee jerk decisions such as relocation
Get clued up on sponsorship
- If you are employing EU national, or individuals from other parts of the world you will now require a UK visa sponsor licence
- Apply for the licence early to beat the Brexit rush. There is a are strict criteria to meet so early research and application is essential
By acting early and future planning your business you can get ahead of your competition and limit the impact of Brexit. If you are looking for any advice on how to manage an uncertain workforce, recruit in uncertain times or restructure to future proof against Brexit, feel free to get in touch with the team at James Grace.