Contrary to public opinion, the UK is one of the leading nations when it comes to manufacturing output. We currently rank ninth in the world, and produce £3.82 billion to our economy from our manufacturing and process businesses (Office for National Statistics).
However, the gridlock of Brexit is dragging the UK economy close to stalling point and fears are growing that the UK could be heading for its first recession in a decade. With the news from the Office for National Statistics of the first fall in quarterly GDP raising concerns that if renewed Brexit jitters, leading up to the new 31 October departure date, could create a second successive quarter of negative growth – the technical definition of a recession. This combined with their report in July that consumer spending is also its’ weakest since the mid-90s, might suggest the writing is on the wall.
It’s no surprise then that growing numbers of manufacturing and processing businesses are delaying their spending plans, or cancelling their investment all together due to the uncertainty in the current marketplace, and not having a clear view on how Brexit could affect their supply chain.
Businesses are now deciding to go to Europe themselves rather than exporting, putting off investment all together and, as Make UK Chief Executive Stephen Phipson describes it, ‘building inventory like crazy’.
The current uncertainty in the marketplace is forcing businesses to hoard more inventory, meaning that their stock holding capabilities need to improve rapidly to deal with the increased levels. One way of achieving this, is to digitalise their business, and introduce a sophisticated and sustainable business software solution.
The fourth industrial revolution is currently taking place, with digitalisation touching every aspect of life, specifically businesses. The introduction of next generation business software is allowing businesses to thrive in this time of uncertainty, automating their stock holding processes and giving them a full and clear overview of their whole business.
It’s critical that UK businesses have next-generation digital infrastructure in place. The UK is taking steps to cement its position as a world leader in future technologies of full fibre and 5G through the £740m of funding from the National productivity investment fund that the chancellor announced last year.
The top companies are digitalising well, and there are numerous examples of medium-sized companies that are starting to do it quite well in implementing these techniques.
Mr Phipson identifies that the challenge is the long tail – the 90% of businesses that are SME’s – and ‘really getting them to realise the value of investment’ and what they can achieve through digitalisation.
To understand how digitalising your processes can help your business, contact Azzure IT today. We have significant experience helping companies like Make UK, S+B and process engineering companies like Snowdonia Cheese.
If you’re looking for expert business software advice, with a leading UK Microsoft Gold Partner, please get in touch today – we’d be happy to explore your options:
0345 467 9950