This week in the political landscape has seen multiple different people leaving both the Labour and Conservative parties; with a large amount of the reasoning being placed on the handling of Brexit: but how could a No Deal Brexit affect the software we use every day and the companies that build it?
Firstly, what actually is a No Deal Brexit? There are quite a number of people that are under the impression that a No Deal Brexit means that there would be no agreement and therefore no Brexit at all which is not the case. A No Deal brexit would mean that we would leave the European Union but without any agreement on, well.. Anything. But how would Brexit; Deal or No Deal, as a whole affect the tech sector like the one that we work and serve clients within?
At a Tech Nation event, former minister Domic Raab said:
“I think if we get it right. We want to maintain integrity of data flows. The aim is to get smart regulation at home within the equivalence approach whilst forging relationships with global markets. What will determine the future of the sector is businesses investing and government doing more to support such as the Chancellor’s recent announcements in the budget. Soft power and our world-class universities will be the driver.”
The key phrase here in Mr Raab’s statement being “if we get it right” and with much uncertainty around currently, who knows what is “right”? There are (inevitably with such an issue) people who disagree with this statement.
“Dominic Raab’s comments do little to answer the concerns of the tech community with relation to Brexit,” said David Galsworthy, CEO and co-founder of Techspace. “Just like other UK politicians, Raab emphasises the need to establish a bespoke trade agreement with the EU based on a free-flow of data, but there’s little to outline what that will mean in practice or how a likely agreement will impact businesses.”
And this emphasises the need for the UK to at least leave the European Union with a deal. Should we leave without a deal and this causes untold uncertainty within businesses and the way that any future agreement may impact companies from a tech standpoint.
What about tech talent?
Martin Linstrom, managing director UK & Ireland, of global enterprise AI leader, IPsoft explained:
“The government must be saying and doing more to reassure local and global players that they will protect those elements that currently make the market so attractive. “How will we fill roles with fewer incoming EU professionals? Will the Government be able to maintain its investment? What regulatory changes or financial incentives will the Government provide to attract prominent companies – especially in light of the digital services tax targeting large tech firms?”
Research by techUK conducted in 2016 revealed that 45% of digitally intensive job vacancies were filled by foreign-born workers, and a quarter of the employees in the software and computer industry are foreign-born, with the majority coming from the European Union. Securing this talent in the future may also encounter further issues with the costs of relocation and visa issues plus any rights to work within the UK also being factored in.
Martin raises multiple issues of which all affect both the tech and software market as a whole but also the talent being recruited into it. And not just from across the channel. Yes, fewer people coming into the UK from the EU will inevitably see all job markets hit but in addition to this, if there is a reduction in investment into tech SMEs and startups, there will be less jobs being created at a grassroots level to help grow and nurture the best talent coming from our own country. Universities rightly grow and drive talent but with many enterprise level companies moving their headquarters out of the UK, graduate schemes will also begin to face even larger competition.
We want to make sure that we are helping to build on the excellent talent in the software market. We take great pride in developing bespoke software for businesses in and around Manchester and this isn’t possible without having exceptional people on board. If you think this might be of interest to you and is something you want to be a part of, please get in touch today.