Mercedes technical director James Allison has revealed the introduction of the cost cap from this year has proven to be particularly taxing for the team.
Formula 1 teams are required to operate within a budget of $145million this season, although there are notable exemptions such as driver salaries and the additional top-three earners.
That figure is cut to $140m for 2022 and dropping to $135m for the following three years as the sport finally begins to reign in the excessive spending of the big teams.
As a team with a high volume of staff, Mercedes will have been significantly impacted in its attempts to cut its cloth accordingly.
Explaining the difficulties involved, in particular, in attempting to deal with a major regulations revamp at the same time going into next year, Allison said there has been "a whole world of change" independent of that "which is every bit as big and which has made the winter and these past months unbelievably hard work".
He added: "The biggest of these by far is trying to understand and assimilate the new financial regulations, the so-called cost cap regulations, to make sure that we can adapt our organisation to be able to operate within the much tighter confines of this new regulation.
"And we have been working on that all the way through 2020, and carried on working through it over the winter, to try and make sure that we've first of all understood what the regulation was saying.
"Second of all to try to find every opportunity that was presented within that set of regulations because every regulation brings opportunities once you can see exactly what they are saying.
"Then to adapt our operation and our company so that we can make the most from it and to be ready for the challenge of this new era of Formula One operating under a cost cap.
"And that has been a huge body of work that has kept us really on our toes for a long, long time.
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