Navigating Brexit | KPMG | UK

Navigating Brexit

Navigating Brexit

Count down with clarity

Brexit has the potential to touch almost every part of your business. With just 18 months to go, KPMG's Brexit Navigator has been developed to guide you at this time of change. Every quarter through to March 2019, explore with our experts the practical steps you need to take to be Brexit ready. In this first edition:

Don't forget to re-visit us in December 2017 - add it to your calendar. The countdown has begun...


Create your own certainties

Don't let your talent drift away

How do you hold onto your EU workforce? Be practical, personal and prepared, says Punam Birly, Brexit People & Immigration Lead.

People are the heart and soul of any business. For many UK employers - from food manufacturers to financial services firms - that now includes a large number of EU citizens, whose skills and expertise comprise an invaluable part of the mix.

Last year's referendum vote left many of those workers feeling very anxious. In a recent KPMG survey on the intentions of EU nationals in the UK, over a third told us they were now considering moving on. And it's the young, single and highly educated who are most likely to head for the door.

Yet a brain drain is by no means a done deal. As negotiations between the UK and the EU gather pace, there is also plenty that employers can do to help keep their prized EU talent on board.

FutureGauge: planning its post-Brexit future

One UK business is opening up its Brexit planning for everyone to see.

FutureGauge is our imagined Brexit business, a Midlands-based UK company through which we'll explore the challenges of Brexit.

A manufacturer of precision components, FutureGauge's operations are inextricably linked with the EU - through supply chains, employees and customers. In this first instalment, we see how FutureGauge is working through key decisions in the countdown to Brexit.

A bricks and mortar presence?

FutureGauge has supply chains zig-zagging across the EU and needs to plan for the possibility that these routes are disrupted by customs barriers going up.

The board are assessing whether to open a facility in Hamburg to assemble one of their top European selling products and to act as a distribution centre for northern European customers. They are evaluating the timeframe, cost, availability of skilled labour, legal frameworks and its tax impact.

Leading the lobbying

As an active member of the region's engineering trade association, FutureGauge CEO Maria Clark has joined a regional working group on Brexit. The group is feeding into a UK Government consultation on the UK's future customs arrangements, established in August.

Maria also needs to protect FutureGauge's position in Europe, so she has enlisted a public affairs consultancy in Brussels to help represent their views on future EU legislation. Maria is also considering the management footprint that FutureGauge will need in Europe.

EU exodus?

FutureGauge employs 1,700 EU nationals in the UK. Their Head of People, Tony Reeve, says it's impossible to know how many might join the 100 who have already left since the Referendum. Yet he's not that worried. Despite some grumblings that their wages are now worth less back home, hardly anyone has raised concerns with HR. However, Federico Marletta, the company's Head of Engineering, commutes from Milan on a Monday and returns on Friday and wants advice on his legal and tax status. The company will happily help a senior, valued member of the company.

The FutureGauge story continues. If you would like to discuss any of the issues raised please get in touch.

Building abroad

Whether you create a branch or subsidiary in the EU largely depends on the sector you operate in, says Tim Sarson, KPMG's value chain management expert.

Regulatory passporting, rising tariffs, worker restrictions and a shifting tax regimes. Brexit issues like these could lead UK businesses towards establishing new bases inside EU member states, or at least beefing up existing ones. But should you do that today, 18 months out, or should you wait until the outlines of a political deal emerge?

Your post-Brexit team: a force for the future?

Securing your pipeline of world-class talent calls for careful planning - and plenty of imagination - says Tim Payne, Head of People and Change

No one knows how Brexit will look in 18 months' time. For many businesses, that uncertainty is intensified by a very real concern about the potential number of highly qualified EU staff currently in the UK who might head home - or be deterred from coming here at all.

Poll: are your Brexit preparations on track?

Every month we're asking our Twitter followers whether their organisations are on track in preparing for the potential opportunities and challenges Brexit may bring.

We will be plotting your responses with each poll to build up a picture of UK Plc's readiness as Brexit day approaches on 29 March, 2019.

Will organisations in the UK need a transition/implementation period after Brexit to adjust their systems, hiring and planning? This sentiment check helps answer that question.

The wider view

The latest Brexit insights from across the KPMG network

Trending topics on 365Brexit

Our live data visualisation tool aggregates the latest twitter data and brings you trending Brexit topics across the globe.

The Brexit effect on EU nationals

We asked thousands of EU nationals in the UK and Europe how Brexit would change their futures? See what they told us, and what that means for UK employers.

Your next Brexit milestone - December 2017

Come back to see what you need to do with just 15 months to go

Add to your calendar

2017-12-01 08:00:00 2017-12-01 08:01:00 Europe/London UK KPMG Brexit Navigator: December milestone Visit KPMG's Navigating Brexit page at to find out more about the December 2017 Brexit milestone

About Future Gauge

You may not be familiar with the name but if you have travelled by train, plane, road vehicle or ship, a FutureGauge product will probably have played some part: we manufacture and distribute precision-engineered components for the transportation sector.

Headquartered in the Midlands and focusing most of our manufacturing there, 65% of our sales come from continental Europe. Two-thirds of our suppliers are UK-based with the remainder split between Europe and SE Asia. We employ 8,000 people in 18 countries – almost 7,000 of them in the UK – and last year recorded sales of £500 milllion.

We believe in investing in the communities in which we are located, including building next-generation skills through apprenticeships. Twenty five percent of our workforce is made up of EU nationals, employed in both skilled and unskilled positions.

We believe that Brexit represents both a significant challenge, but also an opportunity for us.

How do we navigate Brexit and build a new future?