The company could grow even larger if and when it files for an IPO, a move Duffield said is "on track" for some time next year. IPOs are considered "a rite of passage for any good company," and a successful one could convince more C-level executives that Workday is a viable option, he said.
In the meantime, Workday is looking to build out its partner ecosystem. Workday currently has 25 partners covering areas such as system integration, recruiting, talent management and subscription billing, but hopes to increase that number to 60 by the end of 2012, according to Bhusri.
One of Workday's highest-profile partnerships is with fellow cloud vendor Salesforce.com.
On Tuesday, Bhusri described how Workday 15 integrates the system with Salesforce.com's Chatter enterprise social-networking service. The combination will result in secure, "socially enabled business processes," he said. For example, if a number of executives want to use the system to discuss a possible company reorganization, measures will be in place to ensure only authorized people can chime in, he said.
Other new features include an integration with Microsoft Outlook; a series of talent-management enhancements including a Career Interests module that allows employees to "express their career goals and aspirations [and] explore jobs within their company"; a connector to third-party payroll systems; and improved financial analytics.
Overall, Workday's strategy is clicking and larger rivals may have reason to be worried, according to one expert.
"They are in a really good position," said analyst Ray Wang, CEO of Constellation Research. "They're taking market share away from SAP and Oracle. Customers of Dave and Aneel in the past are ready to move to the next product, and that's what they're doing."
Chris Kanaracus covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Chris's e-mail address is Chris_Kanaracus@idg.com