SALT LAKE CITY — The task-focused labor model of the gig economy has helped a handful of companies — Uber, Lyft, Grubhub and others — amass multibillion-dollar valuations along the way to becoming household names.

And while some of the downsides to these businesses are on the “gig worker” side of the equation and include low pay, lack of benefits and a blurry line distinguishing independent contractors from employees, some of the perks unique to the gig workforce are making their way into more traditional work settings.

One of those benefits is a compensation system that features zero — or near zero — lag time between completing the work and getting paid for it. Uber and Lyft offer options for drivers to cash out in mere minutes after dropping off their fares. And even nonlabor side hustles like hosting an Airbnb rental feature quick-turnaround payouts.

Now, Utah tech startup Everee is bringing this option to work outside the gig economy, thanks to a digital platform that allows clients’ employees to get paid on a schedule that best suits their needs, be it daily, weekly, monthly or something in between.

Everee CEO Brett Barlow said there’s no solid rationale behind employers’ penchant for sticking with the ubiquitous biweekly pay schedule that, in some cases, can put employees in unintentional financial binds.

“It’s staggering, but 80% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck,” Barlow said. “Earlier in my life, with a wife and two children, there were times when getting from the 1st to the 15th was a challenge ... and we were forced into a position where a payday loan started to look like a good option.”

Barlow said the traditional pay schedule has been in place for decades and is ripe for disruption.

“There is just no good reason to continue with an archaic system where employers are holding on to the dollars that you’ve earned,” Barlow said. “Everee creates the ability to access those dollars when you most need them.”

Ron Ross, Everee co-founder and president/chief operating officer, said the idea behind the company he helped launch in 2018 was brought into focus thanks to his daughter, and some fiscal challenges she encountered while in college.

“My daughter was living off campus with friends while attending UVU,” Ross said. “She earned enough to pay her bills, but kept coming to me month after month for help. The issue was really about mismatched timing of when her bills were due, especially rent, and when she got paid by her employer.

A screenshot of Everee’s flexible payroll system. The Utah startup is bringing some of the perks of the gig economy to the traditional employment world. | Everee

“It put her in a very uncomfortable predicament. Fortunately, she had me for a backstop, but a lot of people don’t have that luxury, and the next stop is often a payday lender.”

Besides accommodating a more vibrant cash flow option for employees, the mobile-enabled Everee system can manage the entirety of the payroll process, including time clock management verification and reconciliation, report generation and some additional human resources functions. And, it is also seen by some employers as a way to boost employee morale and stand out in an increasingly competitive market where low unemployment has tilted the formula in favor of job seekers.

Sean Wilson is co-founder and CEO of another Utah-based startup, Chip Cookies. Chip, according to Wilson, was the first company to feature super-fast home delivery of fresh-baked cookies and has, since launching in Provo in 2016, grown into a chain of retail locations as well as expanding its delivery footprint into areas of Utah and Idaho. Wilson said he recently made the switch to the Everee payroll platform as an effort, in part, to continue the work of cultivating positivity and engagement among his 200 or so employees.

“At Chip Cookies, a big part of what we do is about creating experiences,” Wilson said. “Having someone bring you fresh, warm cookies has this great, sharing energy that is more than just the product.

“Providing a benefit that Everee brings to the table, like getting paid every day, is something we can do to create a similar positive experience for our employees.”

Wilson also raised the point that employees waiting for those intermittent paychecks are unwittingly extending credit to the very people they work for.

“People getting paid every two to three weeks, they’re actually creditors of their companies,” Barlow said. “Businesses holding on to money that is due employees is something I don’t think many people ... think about.”

Barlow is most assuredly thinking about exactly that issue and is fresh into the top executive position at Everee, as of an appointment announced earlier this month. But he’s a longtime veteran of the Utah tech scene, having spent time previously at the Park City-based headphone maker Skullcandy and most recently as the chief brand officer for Utah’s online tech education giant, Pluralsight.

Everee CEO Brett Barlow, left, and co-founder/President Ron Ross, right. The Utah startup is aiming to disrupt the payroll world with a digital platform that features flexible pay options for employees and easy management tools for employers. | Everee

Ross said Barlow brings critical and deep market experience to Everee just ahead of an $8 million Series A funding round that will help accelerate growth plans for the company.

“We’re changing the way people think about payday, and with Brett’s leadership, we’re going to help businesses everywhere improve the experience for their employees,” Ross said in a statement. “His expertise building best-in-class go-to-market strategies and brands that people love will be invaluable as we grow.

“He’s taken two companies from startup stage to IPO, and we know his experience will allow us to help millions of people more quickly.”