November 17, 2011

Unified Group Services Named Indiana’s Small Business of the Year

November 17, 2011 (INDIANAPOLIS) — Anderson-based Unified Group Services, a third party administrator for self-funded group health plans, was honored November 17 as the Indiana Chamber of Commerce’s 2011 Small Business of the Year. The company and other top small businesses were recognized at the Indiana Chamber’s annual awards luncheon held in downtown Indianapolis.

Starting in company owner Richard Mousty’s sunroom in 1996, he and co-founder Faith Hailey set out to create a company with outstanding customer service. Today, Unified Group Services has grown to employ nearly 100, calling a 22,000-square-foot facility home. With 130 clients in 30 states, the company processes over $370 million in health care claims.

“When we started this company, I wanted to get back to the basics. We believe that when a member calls with a benefits question they deserve to speak to a person and not an automated voice prompter,” asserts Mousty.

“We have been able to maintain that delicate balance between great customer service, growth and new technology.”

Competitive differentiators for Unified include a live operator, dedicated claims account manager, low staff turnover and five-day claims turnaround time. The client retention rate: an impressive 98%.

Mousty attributes his company’s success to that customer loyalty and a staff that is “second to none. Without their hard work and outstanding service, none of this would be possible.”

In return, management provides a camaraderie-building atmosphere and seeks to cultivate long-term relationships with employees. The growth of the company, in fact, has spurred various promotion opportunities. In its 15 years, Unified has never laid off a single worker.

Community outreach is also important to Unified. It is part of Madison County’s buy local group and annually gives back to a number of area and national organizations through direct donations and fundraising activities.

“Unified Group Services has achieved much in its 15 years and has demonstrated dedication to its employees and the local community. Health care services and costs are a major concern for employers and consumers alike. The company’s dedication to its customers makes the proverbial health care ‘pill’ easier to swallow, and is a top reason for the company’s continued success,” attests Indiana Chamber President Kevin Brinegar.

Unified was a Small Business of the Year finalist the past two years.

Finalists for the 2011 Indiana Small Business of the Year award were: KERAMIDA, Inc. of Indianapolis; Matrix Integration of Jasper; and Scorpion Protective Coatings, Inc. of Cloverdale. Matrix Integration and Scorpion Protective Coatings are past finalists and semi-finalists. KERAMIDA is a newcomer to the list.

Semi-finalists were: Korellis Roofing, Inc. of Hammond; Home Comfort Experts of Mishawaka; Slingshot SEO of Indianapolis; and Tortillas Nuevo Leon of Hammond. All semi-finalists are being honored for the first time.

“This impressive list of small businesses is impacting our state in a variety of positive ways. Small businesses are essential to the success of our communities and residents,” Brinegar affirms. “We were impressed by all of the companies that were honored here today, not only for their commitment to making Indiana a better place to work and live, but also for their dedication to their employees.”

The Small Business of the Year award is open to all Hoosier companies with 250 employees or less.

Since its inception, Unified has been recognized with several awards. Rich strongly believes that each award and recognition is a special tribute to the employees’ dedication and the solid foundation on which the company was founded.

  • 2010 Indiana Small Business Administration’s Person of the Year for the State of Indiana.
  • Finalist for Indiana State Chamber of Commerce’s Small Business of the Year in 2009 and 2010.
  • 2009 Company to Watch by the Indiana Economic Development Corporation, its Small Business Development Center network, Purdue University and the Edward Lowe Foundation.
  • 2009 Top Place to Work in Central Indiana according to The Indianapolis Star.
  • 2006-2008 4th Largest Indianapolis Area Employee Benefits Services Firm by the Indiana Business Journal.
  • 2001-2004 Fastest Growing Indianapolis Area Private Company by Indiana Business Journal.
  • 2001-2004 Growth 100 Company by the Indiana University Kelly School of Business.
  • 2003 & 1999 TPA of the Year by Pacific Life.

Unified was the first third party administrator to participate in the Indiana Health Information Exchange (IHIE)’s Quality Health First (QHF) program, which helps physicians and patients achieve better health outcomes and helps reduce the overall cost of care.