Opportunities and Considerations for Supply Chain Operations When the UK Leaves the EU

Posted by Nathanael Lessore 18 Jul, 2018


EU courtyard

We are half way through year 2 of the negotiations for the UK leaving the EU and the decisions regarding the trade-off between free movement and the single market have since been involved in deep debate.

The UK’s vote to leave the EU is expected to bring a significant amount of change regarding supply chain operations. Until now, a supply chain between the UK and EU has been fairly simple and easy to operate. This vote is expected to bring a range of challenges but let’s not forget, with change comes potential opportunities. Let’s take a look at some important factors and opportunities to consider and question regarding supply chain operations and the UK exiting the EU.

Staying competitive in the changing market is essential for all businesses in the supply chain. It is difficult to expect businesses to have full-proof plans already as many factors are unknown but to begin the process and analyse scenarios will always come with an advantage. Understanding potential consequences or opportunities to possible outcomes gives business that competitive edge to stay on top in the market.

Businesses should review their supply chains by recognising where their goods and services are imported and exported from to enable projections’ on where costs could potentially change. Reviewing this also gives good insight on projections regarding potential delays, regulation changes, possible contract alterations and operational shifts.

The questions we all have been asking or should be considering include will regulatory standards change? Will changing trade tariffs impact further down the chain? Will new trade agreements open opportunities to new markets? The answers to these questions have not yet been provided, however to consider is to prepare, this can be done through planning for future opportunity in new markets and ensuring all operations are at a high standard with a full documentation trail in order to adapt quickly and be compliant if needed.

Modification in data and software processes
Change in trade with the EU could bring a need for modification within the software systems used in the supply chain. If processes change then reconfiguration of processes in systems linking up to billing, routing, sourcing and any other operational process may need revising. This is why it is imperative to work with a system that is versatile and can adapt and grow with your business. For example, the CALIDUS suites of products are designed specifically to meet your operational needs. Systems such as CALIDUS tailor themselves to your business requirements, adapting well to any changes if and when they come.


The UK may become more business-friendly
Once the UK exits the EU, it will not have to comply to the EU rules. This could potentially mean the UK could redefine parameters for businesses in regards to how much freedom and flexibility they have in decision making and therefore potentially improving business opportunities’.

It is in the best interest for the country that through the negotiations, the government agrees to keep UK Supply chains efficient and competitive. As businesses in the supply chain industry it is important that we look to the future and open our doors to every potential change and grab the opportunities.
Although the future is uncertain, with change comes opportunities and every business wishing to be successful should welcome and grow with opportunities that they are faced with.

Prepare the UK leaving the EU with a plan of considerations and potential actions in place, understanding every aspect of your business and what may be affected to minimise any damage and ensure the ability to grab the new opportunities as they come in order to stay competitive.


Topics: WMS software, supply chain, warehouse software, technology, delivery, supply chain solutions