There are two things everyone can agree on. First, Brexit is going to happen. Second, it’s going to impact the financial industry significantly. The upheaval is impossible to ignore and hard to predict. And it’s inconceivable that it will be stopped before running its course.
There’s also a third issue nobody will argue with. Between now and finalising the UK’s constitutional Euro-divorce, the volume of commentary and speculation will grow exponentially. Yet we urgently need more than just talk. We need more even than strategy and planning. The whole financial industry requires solid, practical execution to deal effectively with detailed operational and commercial challenges.
Moving from speculation to implementation - a ‘stairway to Brexit’
What does an effective stairway to Brexit look like for financial institutions? It identifies, and takes full account, of the areas that need to function coherently and compliantly in a post-Brexit market. It consists of seven key steps:
Establish a Central Brexit Function to enable a holistic view of multiple and disparate moving parts, with an effective framework.
Carry out a Location Strategy and Legal Entity Structure Review to start transforming general messages about ‘change’ into a transition-able Legal Entity Structure.
Enable effective Client Documentation/Trading Agreement Management so that post-Brexit life can go on and with minimal disruption to clients.
Rationalise Product/Service Offering to explore and ensure viability in a new Legal Entity.
Review Collateral/Treasury Optimisation to ensure effective use of collateral in response to Legal Entity changes.
Address Regulatory Compliance issues because one certainty is that regulation will still be with us.
Manage Technology/Architecture/Data so that, post-Brexit, institutions will be in the best possible infrastructural shape to identify and exploit new opportunities.
We may not have all the answers. But we can substantially reduce the ‘unknown unknowns’.
To quote those infamous words, Brexit has to be at the apex of ‘unknown unknowns’. But, with clear sighted and robust strategy, planning and execution, we can cut across the uncertainty and speculation and eliminate ‘the ones we don't know we don't know’.
Executing a robust implementation plan can offer financial institutions a direct route to vital post-Brexit competencies.
This may not be a stairway to heaven, but certainly a solid 7-step plan to post-Brexit resilience. It’s time to transform our collective reaction to Brexit: from ‘make it go away’ to ‘bring it on’!
To find out more, view our Brexit response: 7 key initiatives banks must undertake