How can you protect your business?

You cannot have escaped the stories in the press recently around the cost of living; recently, the Financial Times, BBC and more have carried articles which have been heavily shared on LinkedIn and other social media platforms. All of them are talking about the strain on Britain’s small businesses.

The Financial Times article stated that Increasing wage bills, higher raw material costs, the supply chain crunch and the fallout from Brexit only add to the pressures UK business faces. Later in the same article, it also says that insolvencies in SMEs over the three-month period to June 30th are up 13% over the previous 3 months.  The upshot is that many SMEs, which together employ about three-fifths of the UK workforce, will probably collapse without government intervention.

If you are an SME, especially manufacturing, what can you do to best protect your business from the tsunami that may be coming?  (We haven’t even mentioned the R-word yet!)

Well, you may ask yourself the following:

Do I understand all my costs in terms of product costing and/or job costing?

Do I understand the effect the rise of individual marginal costs will have on each of my products and customers?

Am I operating as efficiently as possible, and am I allowing excess costs to accrue, say with spreadsheet administration or manual working?

Do I know which products or jobs, or customers are making me the most margin, or least – which are least resistant to the stress test of the unexpected input price increase?

Do I know how resilient my business is to bad debt in case I have customers who seek administration or CVA etc.?

Of course, there will be many more questions which may spring to mind when you start to dig a little deeper into what is happening for your business.

In the past, we might have been sanguine about inefficiencies or lack of true operational understanding; however, we suggest that in today’s climate, we need to be forensic as the strong will survive, and Darwinian economics could apply.


So what can be done?

We suggest that help is needed to do what you can to optimise your chances of survival and even growth over the next few months.

Over the next few weeks, we will be putting out regular posts on the following subjects:

Operational Costing

Marginal Analysis

Production Scheduling and Advanced Planning

Demand Forecasting

Supply Chain

Business Resilience

Cybersecurity and risk mitigation (yes, our sister company, TwentyFour IT are experts in cybersecurity, infrastructure resilience and testing, and infrastructure management).

If there are subjects not mentioned that you feel are close to your heart, we would love to hear from you.

We are also planning a series of round table events later in the year hosted with decades of knowledge and experience, hosted and roundtable being keywords.

No one has all the answers, but together we can help plan actions to improve the environment and opportunities for your business. Our guys (and girls) have all run production, run companies, been the FD, and been responsible for supply chains, so can genuinely contribute to a discussion without ‘agenda’.

Giving you the chance to have the frank conversations needed right now.

We would love to hear from you anyway as the future success of UK Plc, especially in manufacturing, is what we are about and close to our heart. Helping you to succeed to be more efficient, have better control, and have better visibility is what we are here for.

Our success is measured in yours.

To find out more about how we can support your business at this increasingly challenging time, please get in touch.