An urgent need for action
Time is running out, and the negotiations between Brussels and London have caused quite the worried faces. Like a sword of Damocles, a hard Brexit is looming over the concerned companies, raising questions on which challenges are waiting to be dealt with and how the consequences should be mastered. What is certain is that companies will be forced to implement radical changes, no matter the eventual decisions between EU and UK. In several companies, the consequences resulting from the United Kingdom’s departure from the EU are now starting to become very evident. Of course, first steps to dealing with the break have been taken a long time ago, but, faced with the uncertainty surrounding the political decision, have been steadily procrastinated. Thoroughly discussed issues revolving around legal, customs-specific and foreign trade-specific, financial and balance-related as well as strategic aspects are now calling for acute action. In doing so, both necessary short-term measures as well as issues for long-term cooperation will have to be taken into account.
Complexity in the IT landscape
Now it is high time, and activities are running at full speed. Especially IT departments are left with the Herculean task of integrating the diverse aspects of a Brexit into the systems. At the forefront there’s the ERP system, the company’s central nervous system that affects all areas. Which adjustments need to be made and what consequences will then arise can be assessed through smart simulations. Planning tools support this process and offer solution-oriented tasks that minimize risks. In this context, the legal regulations of the GDPR need to be checked, since the use and exchange of data is a topic that must be treated sensitively and with the utmost care. Another point is the movement of goods. Since due to the changes concerning customs regulations, not only administrative overheads need to be taken into account, but delivery delays and price increases require additional consideration during planning, and according measures must be taken.
Intelligence is required
In order to validly integrate the new legal and tax requirements of the business relationships between the EU and UK into the systems, profound knowledge of the existing processes and data structures as well as of the new regulations are needed. Impacts, such as on cash management, can be identified by means of specific analyses, and potentially necessary adjustments tackled in a targeted way. Intelligent analyses and qualitative evaluations based on valid data visualize the consequences of Brexit and ensure that balances are not hiding any scary surprises.
Adjustments in business systems made for a future UK-free EU are diverse and need to be performed in many places. Helpful tools such as simulation systems, intelligent data analyses or analytical systems for digital forensics help with enabling a seamless transition during the on-going operation. But every system can only be as good as its ‘master’, which means that experts are needed to make such thing possible. For this purpose, know-how in the depths of process structures, connected contexts of data constructs and the new legal guidelines between the EU and UK is required.
The interplay of high-quality IT systems and expert knowledge puts the Brexit demon in its place. And taking this thought a step further, Brexit can even be seen as something positive – as a chance, that is, to make use of the external pressure and take a profound look into the processes within the corporate landscape. A consequent discovery of optimization potential is guaranteed. Broadened perspectives on new markets, changed price and cost structures or financial changes can be quickly detected using the applied tools, and deflective actions can be taken. Conclusion: there are two sides to every coin, they merely need to be seen.
Author: Claus Engel
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