Image source: Pegasystems.

What's happening: Shares of Pegasystems (PEGA -0.48%) were up 18.7% as of 12:45 p.m. Thursday, setting fresh all-time highs along the way. The maker of business process and customer relationship management software reported second-quarter results on Wednesday night, soundly beating analyst expectations across the board.

Why it's happening: Wall Street was looking for second-quarter earnings or $0.12 per share on $152 million in total sales. Pegasystems blew past both of these consensus estimates with adjusted earnings of $0.14 per diluted share and revenues totaling $162 million. Sales grew 13% year-over-year, sparking a 40% boost on the bottom line.

"We exceeded our revenue goals while building backlog, demonstrating strong execution throughout the organization," said Pegasystems CEO Alan Trefler in a press statement. "We continue to be gratified that the most successful enterprises in the world are choosing Pega to transform their organizations for efficiency and competitive advantage.

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In particular, Pegasystems' cloud-based business tools delivered 85% year-over-year growth on an adjusted basis, and the emerging platform now accounts for 4.4% of the company's overall sales. That's up from 2.7% in the year-ago quarter. But wait -- there will be more:

"We are promoting our Pega Cloud offering as a way to speed client adoption," said Trefler on a conference call with analysts. That approach should keep cloud sales growing in stature within the company at large.

Pegasystems shares have now soared 30% higher year-to-date. The stock trades at a nosebleed-inducing 71 times trailing earnings, but justifies that rarefied pricing level with exceptional growth. The second-quarter report simply underscored the long-term growth trends and highlighted the rise of cloud-based solutions.