Safwan Shah — An Innovative Way to Pay Your Team Right Away

Safwan Shah on Scaling Up Podcast with Bill Gallagher

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Safwan Shah on Scaling Up Podcast with Bill Gallagher

Today’s episode addresses two different areas in the world of cash as well as a novel and innovative business. We’ll be taking a dive into the employee/employer relationship and the stresses that lead to employee discomfort around the topic of cash.

Safwan Shah is the Founder and CEO of PayActiv, an employer-sponsored financial wellness platform. With a Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering, Safwan has a unique perspective about the finance industry. His company serves millions of employees worldwide and settles over $1B in timely EWA funds annually.

Safwan is originally from Pakistan and has been in the Silicon Valley since the mid-90s, where he stumbled onto becoming an entrepreneur. As an engineer, Safwan has had the opportunity to work in several NASA centers throughout his career.

Safwan started PayActiv after he noticed a pattern among employers and employees: people work every day, yet they only get paid every two weeks, or even after a month. Is there a reason why employees are giving a time loan to their employer? Yet, if you own a store or shop, you pay your vendors and even your landlord in advance, and your customers pay you almost immediately.

For employers, cash flow is often an issue. At a large company, around 50-70 percent of payroll consists of hourly workers. Before an employer can get up one morning and decide to pay their workers instantly, there are definitely some logistical challenges they must first think through.

What happens when an employee wants early pay or even an early bonus? Employers often get annoyed by these requests because of how time-consuming it can be to fulfill. PayActiv helps employers eliminate these painful logistical challenges by creating a seamless way employees can ask for their pay (and receive it) without bothering anyone.

Interview Links:

Safwan on LinkedIn


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Scaling Up is the best-selling book by Verne Harnish and our team for Gazelles Coaching, on how the fastest growing companies succeed where so many others fail. My name is Bill Gallagher, host of the Scaling Up business podcast and a leading Gazelles Coach. Gazelles is the term we use for fast-growing companies.

We help leadership teams with 4 Decisions around People, Strategy, Execution, and Cash so that they can Scale Up successfully and beat the odds of business growth success. Scaling Up for Gazelles companies is based on the Rockefeller Habits 2.0 (from Verne’s original best-selling business book, Mastering the Rockefeller Habits).

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