Workday plans to open up its platform to developers, partners and third party software vendors.
In a blog post, CEO Aneel Bhusri said the move will settle a long-running question for Workday. Bhusri added that Workday chose to focus on reliability and scalability as it built out its cloud service before opening up.
Meanwhile, customers have been asking for "a more open Workday platform." These customers "want to use Workday as a cloud backbone that supports cohesive, digital workflows across multiple business applications."
With the move, Workday enters the platform-as-a-service game and can better counter rivals. Oracle offers PaaS; SAP Cloud Platform is focused on connecting its apps; Salesforce has its formidable ecosystem; and companies like ServiceNow have opened up to expand into new enterprise areas including human resources. Here's the PaaS landscape via Gartner.
Simply put, Workday's competitive risks would have increased if it didn't open up its platform. Customers are increasingly using integrations and third party apps as they mix and match cloud services.
While it's still early days, I believe that opening up the Workday Cloud Platform will prove to be one of most important moves we've made since starting the company back in 2005.
More details about Workday's PaaS plans will land in the fall at Workday Rising.