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Third-party employee benefits administrator Consolidated Admin Services LLC has a pretty fantastic claim to fame: its 98.5% client retention rate.
The way in which it achieved that is what makes her company unique, said founder and President Carrie Stout.
“I tell our team all the time, you know, we’re participants. So treat our participants how you want to be treated,” she said. “It’s really the difference between us and our competitors; we answer the phones. We don’t have a phone chain that they have to go into. We answer our emails within 24 hours of them being sent to us, probably within an hour. We’re constantly on our customer service game. We provide the best technology that’s on the market for the type of plans that we have. We circle that with the best service.”
Part of that customer service is providing its clients with a free annual seminar on compliance needs for the upcoming year.
When she founded Consolidated Admin Services in 2009, Stout had been working in employee benefits for years. She said she started the business because she didn’t want to drive into west Little Rock anymore and wanted to spend more time with her family.
Now her company, which handles tax and compliance functions for businesses, has 20 employees and more than 600 clients. It was there to help even when the passage of the Affordable Care Act shook things up for businesses, she said.
Stout said her business model is to be less costly than in-house employees and outside firms that do too much, from benefits to payroll to 401(k)s and more. Her philosophy for the business is that it can be great at one thing instead of good at a few things.
Stout said she founded the company because it’s something she likes doing. “I love helping people. It’s just one of those things that I really enjoy,” she said, and she likes knowing “that people can depend on me to help give them the answers that they need and feel comfortable knowing that we’re going to take care of them.”