The recent turmoil within the UK financial markets, combined with global inflationary pressures has led many UK business leaders to believe recession is inevitable.
UK companies are bracing themselves for the downturn, with 96% of UK business leaders currently making plans to mitigate the impact of a recession.
Independent research conducted in September investigates business leaders’ views on the potential of the UK entering a recession, and how they plan to respond.
Almost two thirds (64%) said looking for new markets would be a priority, while 61% are planning to diversify products and services and over half (54%) are preparing to acquire other businesses.
All of these aggressive, market growth strategies significantly outweigh the more negative approach of cutting Opex (51%) and Capex (50%) budgets.
Anthony Lamoureux, CEO of Velocity Smart Technology, the smart locker provider says, “The fact that businesses are not seeing this as a time to retrench and step back underlines the vastly different financial and socioeconomic factors that have led up to the current downturn compared to previous recessions.
Demand is still strong in many markets as companies look to build back up after the pandemic. Plus, of course, staff and skills are still in huge demand – with the UK currently experiencing the lowest level of unemployment in 50 years.
Indeed, staff costs remain one of the key challenges – with 31% planning to increase salaries to tackle the rising cost of living to help improve how employees work in the future.
Almost half (49%) plan to offset that cost by subletting unused office space as a result of staff working remotely.
Lamoureux concludes, “Firms not only recognise the importance of attaining and retaining talent to meet new business objectives, but also know there is minimal flexibility around staff reduction or pay cuts to alleviate rising costs.”
Conducted in September 2022 Velocity Smart Technology commissioned the research to investigate how UK Businesses are preparing for a recession and the needs of the future workforce.