Despite all the fuming and arguing, all the political wrangling and eleventh-hour negotiations, business is still no clearer about Britain’s terms of withdrawal. All we know is that Brexit will be delayed, and from past experience we know this situation may change again. UK manufacturers have been extremely concerned throughout Brexit, and now the impact of a delay raises further issues for the supply of electronics and materials into their production schedules.
Take immediate advantage of any delays
Many UK companies did not respond early enough to the possibility of component shortages caused by Brexit. Any extension of the withdrawal process is welcomed as it provides more time for UK manufacturing to prepare, however until we have full clarification the advice remains the same: prepare for Brexit and make full use of any delays to mitigate possible disruptions.
Mitigate risk through the supply chain
The most important step is for manufacturers to continue giving their supply-chain partners visibility beyond 2019. Not just their component suppliers, but subcontractors and their COTS (Commercial Off-The-Shelf) equipment providers as well. It’s important for them to health check their BOM (Bill of Materials) to ensure they have multiple, approved vendors for critical parts, especially within mature systems. If a part is approaching Last Time Buy (LTB), they must not wait until the last minute: try to secure the product as far ahead as possible. They need to engage with their supply chains and have an open dialogue.