Reboot for Business West’s online Brexit advice hub as clock ticks down to end of transition period

November 26, 2020

The award-winning Trading Through Brexit service run by Business West has been relaunched to help companies make crucial last-minute adjustments to the way they operate ahead of the end of the UK-EU transition period.

Regardless of whether or not a deal is reached between UK and EU negotiators ahead of deadline on December 31, businesses will still need to complete extra paperwork when importing or exporting goods, as well as complying with stricter immigration laws and other issues. 

Trading Through Brexit was set up two years ago by Business West – the organisation that runs the Swindon & Wiltshire Initiative – to prepare the region’s firms for life outside the EU.

In its first year it attracted more than 500 subscribers and 15,140 webpage visits – an achievement that led to Business West winning the Most Effective Campaigning category at the annual British Chambers of Commerce Awards.

Since then it has gone on to help thousands of companies with queries about the impact of Brexit on their business.

Subscribers receive video updates and are invited to post their most pressing questions to the Business West policy team via the hub.

Answers are posted directly to the site to share common issues with the business community.

Now the hub has been rebooted to help enable businesses make 11th-hour changes as the clock ticks down to full departure from the EU.

The revamped hub provides businesses with quick and easy access to a number of different online and offline resources:

  • Advice & Guidance – signposting to the latest government advice, FAQs and other useful related links

  • Content & Resources – curated directory of multimedia resources created by subject matter experts
  • Customs Declarations – brokerage service for importers and exporters, takes the hassle out of new paperwork
  • Brexit Support Services – access specialist support services designed to help you navigate through the disruption caused by Brexit.

New visitors to the site also have the option to sign up to receive regular insights and information by email as the latest advice is updated.

One business to have received extensive support through the Trading Through Brexit programme is engineering firm AVPE (Avon Valley Precision Engineering), based between Bristol and Bath at Bitton.

Managing director Mark Summers said: “We asked Business West to help us better understand the potential impacts of Brexit on our business.

“All advice was comprehensive: Business West managed to disseminate detailed technical information into far more understandable layman’s terms.

“My team now have a far better grasp on the challenges we face and how we need to amend our internal processes and systems accordingly.”

Business West managing director Phil Smith added: “Business West has been the leading authority on business and Brexit in the South West since the referendum was announced in 2015.

“Working side by side with the business community, our policy team has been instrumental in enabling businesses to prepare for Brexit throughout this period. The Trading Through Brexit hub was a natural next step to allow more and more businesses to benefit from our advice online.

“As we enter this crucial period, with less than 40 days to go until the transition period ends, this timely digital reboot will enable businesses to find the information and resources they need to prepare for Brexit fast.”

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