Stop, Look and Listen on February 28

Sometimes, managed service providers ignore deep, informative, free information about their industry and the overall economy. One of the easiest ways to gather valuable information is to listen to investor conference calls. As a case in point: Salesforce.com is scheduled to announce quarterly results on February 28. The news will surely give Wall Street -- and solutions providers -- a much-needed software-as-a-service (SaaS) reality check.

Plenty of folks continue to position SaaS as a perfect bet during a slowing economy. MSPmentor thinks SaaS is one of the best areas MSPs can target. And Level Platforms CEO Peter Sandiford has described how MSPs are evolving to manage and monitor SaaS environments. But no tech market is completely immune to an economic meltdown.

That said, Salesforce.com is a great bell weather stock for anyone watching the SaaS industry. We've already seen weak financial results from RightNOW, another SaaS provider. Next up, NetSuite will announce financial results on February 14. Then, all eyes will be on Salesforce.com on February 28. Take one hour to listen in on the financial call, and you'll have a far better feel for the SaaS industry's current and anticipated performance.

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