UnitedHealth Group Inc.

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UnitedHealth Group Inc. is a pharmaceutical organization based in Minnetonka, Minnesota. It operates across its segments-UnitedHealthcare, OptumHealth, OptumInsight, and OptumRx-which deliver a wide range of healthcare products and insurance schemes. It is a leading insurance insurer in the United States selling a variety of plans and services not only to people but also to group clients. The insurance benefits under UnitedHealthcare account for the majority of the company's annual sales, with a proportion of 65 percent in 2016. This segment includes different units for businesses and people, senior citizens, city and state, veterans, and global programs. This is an illustration of the diversified nature of UnitedHealth’s customers. In 2016, the organization served approximately 115 million individuals (Reuters.com).

SWOT Analysis

UnitedHealth has a number of inherent strengths that prove important when it comes to competing in the marketplace. The first strength is the size of the organization and its networks. By serving millions of individuals every year, the organization has successfully created a strong brand in the United States. Its size also enables it to take advantage of economies of scale to maintain its medical and operating costs low compared to its competitors. The second strength of UnitedHealth is its diversified portfolio of products and services. Its wide range of differentiated products caters to different types of customers which further widens its customer base. The company’s diversification non-insurance health services that are characteristically high-growth is an illustration of company’s anticipation of future trends in the healthcare industry. The differentiation and diversification of its product mix ensure that the company consistently acquires earning even in times when economic and insurance cycles constantly change (Morse, 2017). This cushions the company against poor financial performance and prepares it for uncertain economic times in the future, which is a concern for all stakeholders in the health insurance industry.

Despite the inherent strengths, UnitedHealth also has a couple of weaknesses that could potentially jeopardize its sustained success. First is the range of issues associated with the expansion of a company. The company has expanded its networks over the recent past through acquisitions. This has lead to an increase in general and administrative expenses. The second weakness of UnitedHealth is its dependence on the American market. Despite its ventures in the international market, most of its revenues are derived from the domestic market. This exposes the company to huge risks due to the uncertainty of American markets.

In terms of opportunities, the company can continuously increase its market share by acquiring other players in the market. Besides adding to the company’s revenues, such acquisitions would further diversify the firm’s portfolio. UnitedHealth can also introduce new plans to cater to emerging needs in the healthcare sector. The company’s presence in some sectors within the healthcare industry is limited. This gives an opportunity for the organization to take effective measures to achieve increased growth. In the United States, there is also a significant number of people who are not enrolled in any healthcare plan. The company can effectively create a product to cater to this segment of potential customers.

Threats are indicative of external factors that could negatively impact business. In the case of UnitedHealth, government regulations are a major threat. Currently, there is a looming crisis on the fate of the Affordable Care Act. A move to change health insurance regulations to create a new system could significantly affect the company’s operations. Increasing competition in the health insurance industry also poses a major threat to the organization’s operations. This could potentially decrease the company’s market share and consequently its profitability.

UnitedHealth Group Inc. Mission Statement

The organization's mission statement is long and detailed, giving a glimpse into what the organization seeks to achieve. The general mission statement goes as follows “Our mission is to help people live healthier lives and to make the health system work better for everyone” (Unitedhealthgroup.com). This statement is expanded to three statements: “We seek to enhance the performance of the health system and improve the overall health and well-being of the people we serve and their communities; We work with healthcare professionals and other key partners to expand access to quality healthcare, so people get the care they need at an affordable price; and We support the physician/patient relationship and empower people with the information, guidance and tools they need to make personal health choices and decisions” (Unitedhealthgroup.com).

The organization’s mission statement focuses on what the organization does and the people it serves. The mission statement clarifies that despite being a for-profit company, the company creates social value by thriving to make the society better. As such, its states communities as the market of the organization’s products. The statement also gives directions on how leaders at the organization must conduct themselves on a daily basis. The mention of support for the physician/patient relationship illustrates how the company delivers its products and services to customers. The mission statement also includes an aspect of measurability by indicating success as the overall health of customers it has served. UnitedHealth’s mission statement effectively addresses all the core components of a good mission statement.

I would propose a revision of the organization’s mission statement to be shorter. A perfect mission statement should be short and easy to understand at first glance. This would ensure that all stakeholders understand what the organization seeks to achieve in the foreseeable future. A revised version of the organization’s mission statement would be as follows: “Our mission is to enhance the performance of the healthcare system and improve the health of our stakeholders while still ensuring easy access to affordable and quality healthcare in a caring supportive environment.” This summarizes the core components in a precise manner that is more appealing to a reader.

References

Morse, S. (2017). Secret Weapon: UnitedHealth’s Optum Business is Laying Waste to Old Notions about how Players Make Money. Retrieved from http://www.healthcarefinancenews.com/news/secret-weapon-unitedhealths-optum-business-laying-waste-old-notions-about-how-payers-make-money

Reuters.com. Profile: UnitedHealth Group Inc (UNH). Retrieved from https://www.reuters.com/finance/stocks/companyProfile/UNH

Unitedhealthgroup.com. Mission and Values. Retrieved from http://www.unitedhealthgroup.com/About/MissionValues.aspx

October 12, 2022
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Health Life Business

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