Posted by: Ceri Plumb, Client Services Manager.
With a new UK Prime Minster at Number 10, the prospect of a No Deal Brexit has become ever-more real. Of course, there is still the possibility that Boris Johnson and his government will re-negotiate the deal, but regardless of the outcome, the UK is set to leave the European Union (EU) after 31 October 2019, or sooner if a deal is reached. As such, businesses should ensure they are prepared. If you haven’t already, preparing for Brexit today means that your business will be better positioned to respond to whatever the outcome may be.
We know that many of the organisations we work with have already started to prepare for Brexit, but for those HR and Relocation Managers that haven’t, here’s our best practice recommendations for how to begin:
Conduct a full review of your assignee population, specifically how many UK and EU nationals are currently on assignment and the locations in which they are living and working. You may also want to look at scheduled moves that may be impacted by Brexit in the future.
Making a decision to relocate a business will arguably shape a company for years to come. From a mobility perspective, detailed analysis is needed to assess whether relocation is indeed the best option and – if so – which is the most suitable location for a company to align its corporate culture and talent, to achieve its business goals.
If your business is considering relocating out of the UK, then it’s important to understand the unique set of challenges that each host location may present e.g. rental market conditions, immigration laws, schooling options, shipping times, bureaucratic hurdles. Challenges like these can increase the cost of relocation or mean that it takes longer to implement moves. Parallel operating costs also need to be considered, where critical business operations need to function in both old and new locations.
If your business is considering relocating out of the UK, then we recommend you get in touch with your relocation services provider today.
Regularly communicate with all parties involved in the mobility process, from assignees and key business areas, to your immigration and relocation services providers. Assignees should be made aware of the possible disruption that Brexit may have on their assignments. Setting expectations early, will avoid assignees feeling alienated later on. Sharing your contingency plans with key business areas will also mean everyone in your company is aligned throughout the process.
The post-Brexit political and economic landscape is still very much open to speculation. Depending on what the final agreement is between the UK and the EU, we are likely to see companies adopt different approaches to maintain and grow their presence in EU markets. Avoid the ‘wait and see’ approach, and create a contingency plan that’s flexible enough to amend should you need to negotiate any new hurdles along the way, and above all, expect the unexpected!
As the market leader in relocation services, Cartus will continue to monitor Brexit as it evolves. In the meantime, if you have any questions or want to find out more, please do not hesitate to contact your Cartus representative or email: email@example.com.