UK manufacturers are anticipating the largest decrease in production since the start of last year over the next three months. The downturn has now spread to manufacturing after beginning in consumer-facing services.
The Bank of England predicted last month that the United Kingdom was likely to enter recession in the final three months of this year, but many economists believe it will be avoided following steps taken by Prime Minister Liz Truss's administration to guarantee household and company energy bills.
Despite three months of increased growth in car production, it was countered by decreased productivity from manufacturers of food and drink.
What should suppliers and manufacturers look out for in the upcoming months? Here are some key things to keep an eye on:
Supply chain disruptions: With production expected to slow down, suppliers and vendors may see disruptions in their supply chains. Be prepared for delays or changes in orders from customers. Keep an eye on your supply chain and be prepared to adjust your sourcing strategy as needed.
Increased costs: Slower production can lead to increased costs for manufacturers. Manufacturers should keep an eye on the price they are selling their products for. If production slows down, then costs may also increase due to slower business rates and lower profit margins which could lead to a decrease in how much customers want or need your product rather than just enough so that you can maintain profitability but not over-expand by trying new things when there isn't demand out yet for those items. Keep an eye on your budget and be prepared to adjust your pricing accordingly.
Changes in consumer behavior: As the economy changes, consumers may change their spending habits. Be prepared to adjust your marketing and sales strategies accordingly.
Payment issues: With production down, manufacturers may experience difficulties paying their bills on time. Suppliers and vendors should be prepared for delayed payments or requests with extended payment terms to ensure that they receive what is owed them in full immediately when shipments arrive at the end of each month as scheduled - even if that means taking out short-term loans from other sources until things return up again.
Thankfully, manufacturers can draw some comfort from measures that will cap business energy tariffs at less than half the market rate from next month. The cap in energy tariffs will allow some financial relief for businesses. However, the Bank of England is expected to raise interest rates, in an attempt to combat the recent consumer price inflation. As suppliers and manufacturers, being aware of these potential issues can better financially prepare you for the months ahead.