Dreamforce showgoers can expect Salesforce.com to lay out "a fairly ambitious, interesting, new-age agenda" for HR software, but it's not likely the company's strategy will attempt to take established players like Oracle, SAP and fellow cloud vendor Workday head-on, Bloom added.
Martens sees a number of potential scenarios playing out.
For example, Salesforce.com could make a major acquisition, "perhaps picking up Saba, which is struggling with financial woes at present," Martens said.
The future might also see Salesforce.com build out a full-blown "HR cloud," with a combination of home-grown development, acquisitions and partner-built applications, according to Martens.
Dreamforce starts Sept. 18 in San Francisco.
Chris Kanaracus covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Chris' email address is Chris_Kanaracus@idg.com