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How to Set, Measure, and Report on SLAs

In the Service Level Agreement (SLA) report, you can look at the SLA status of a single device at any time. Read this article, to know more about service level agreement and its measurement and report.

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Starting with what service level agreements, SLAs (service level agreements) are hard to measure, report on, and meet. They can also be hard to set up and change in many service desks. Still, it’s important to keep track of how well you’re doing against your top goals, and SLAs are a great way to improve customer satisfaction.

Set, Measure, and Report on SLAs

A service level agreement (SLA) tells you what you can and can’t do. As a service provider, a service level agreement is a written agreement between you and your customer, whether that customer is inside or outside your company. It lays out what services you will provide, how quickly you will respond, and how you measure your performance.

What is a service level agreement (SLA) is a set of agreed-upon terms for a service, including uptime and response time. For example, a company could promise customers 99.9% service uptime or a response from support in 24 hours. In addition to setting out service expectations, SLAs set out how to get back at people who don’t meet them.

What is a Service Level Agreement?

Agreements between your IT team and your customers are called Service Level Agreements (SLAs). They are important for building trust. They set customer expectations and let your team know which problems you must solve. 

With service level agreements in place, everyone knows what to expect from each other. SLAs can help your IT team in several ways, including:

  • Strengthening IT’s relationship with its customers: SLAs make it less stressful to think about risk, which makes people more trusting of each other– People try to cut down on the amount of guesswork by outlining what happens if there is a breach
  • Talking with stakeholders about IT problems can be hard– Formalising communication can help. Some people don’t like having to hear from their customers 10 times a day. On  the other hand, they don’t like having their customers stew over their unspoken expectations for customer service-  An SLA lets people who work with each other have structured talks about things that have already been agreed to
  • Improving productivity and morale: SLAs tell you how urgent requests should be– They help IT teams figure out which problems are most important
  • Between SLAs and KPIs, there’s a big difference
  • In the future, you and your customer will agree on how things will work together– This is called a Service Level Agreement (SLA). These are the metrics that show how well a team did against agreed-upon standards.

SLA agreement example would be an IT service desk. It usually agrees to provide technical support for a wide range of services and devices in the business, as well as promises about things like uptime, first-call resolution, and time to get things back up and running again after service outages. If the IT service desk meets these promises, these metrics are called KPIs. These were some of the service level agreement examples.

Simple, right? We think so. When it comes to real life, though, IT teams often run into one or more big problems;

  • SLAs are hard to keep track of, and changing them is even more difficult. It can be hard for IT managers to figure out what is service level agreement, what are service level agreement examples and how well they’re meeting their service level agreement (SLA) goals
  • It is because they have to get a lot of raw data, write custom queries, and build complicated Excel formulas
  • It can also take a lot of time to change the SLAs in many service desks because they have to be made or fixed
  • There are times when SLAs don’t match with the business’s main goals. SLAs don’t seem to change or evolve as quickly as the business does. Most of the time, they’re passed down. Someone set an SLA a decade ago, and it’s still being kept because it’s there
  • There aren’t a lot of leeways when it comes to reports. It doesn’t matter how long it takes for a customer to respond to you or how long it takes for you to respond to them because most SLA reports don’t make it easy to account for them
  • Your SLA was met or not met. There isn’t a way to highlight something in a report that shows why or shows you how to keep getting better.

TRACK YOUR SLA TODAY

How to Set SLAs and Keep Track of It

Above, we talked about how SLAs can make it seem like you’re not always measuring things that help your company meet its bigger business goals. The best way to make sure you’re measuring the right things and meeting the expectations that other parts of the business have of you is to review your SLA Management often. Follow these steps; 

  1. Make sure you have a baseline to work from. Check your SLAs and how well you’re meeting them– Take a look at what you have to offer and how it fits into the business goals of your company and your clients
  2. What should you do? Talk to your customers face-to-face and ask for constructive feedback. What are you good at, and what could you do better at? Yes, make sure you offer the right ones
  3. Based on the steps above, write a rough draft of new SLA management. Make sure you get rid of the services you don’t need and add the ones that will make customers even happier and add value to both the business and the IT
  4. Get help from your boss. There must be agreement from both your IT leaders and your customer leaders for SLAs to work. The first thing you should do is get your own management to support you. Then, ask them to help you negotiate with the management team of your customer
  5. If you’ve done the above, your SLA management should be in good shape.

Rules for SLA

  • The best SLAs for your business and customers are ready to be put into place when you’ve agreed on them. People who use SLAs should follow these tips to make them even easier and more effective
  • Create an SLA that doesn’t keep track of how long it takes to solve a problem when you’re waiting for a customer to answer.
  • There are a lot of things that IT departments need to know about their own response times in order to give the best service. SLAs can be hard to measure because slow-response customers and third-party escalations make response times look worse than they might be
  • It’s important to make sure that your measurement and reporting systems can handle exceptions like these so that the service desk team is tracked based on how well they are actually working, not how well they should be. 

Simplicity 

Use simple, clear names for your projects. Agents should be able to read the name of the SLA and quickly figure out how they’re being judged. It’s also important not to set too many goals. 

Agents should be able to easily figure out what their goals are without having to deal with too many unique situations. The more goals you make and the more variables you add to each goal, the more difficult it is to understand and follow.

Break Up Complicated SLAs

Instead of making complicated SLAs, make a series of smaller ones. This way, you can measure and report on the parts of your workflow, not just the whole thing. This also makes it easier to change your SLAs and keep them up to date.

Prioritize Performance Goals 

If your printer doesn’t work on a normal day, your service desk team won’t give it the highest priority. That’s not all. A different story. In real life, IT teams look at a lot of different things when they decide which tickets to deal with first. 

For example, they look at which parts of the business are being affected, who opened the ticket, and even more complicated combinations of these things (like an outage of the sales booking system at the end of the quarter). That is what a service level agreement is. 

Because your service desk software should be flexible, you can set performance goals for SLAs for just about anything you can think of. It’s important to be able to change or edit them quickly so that your team’s priorities stay in line with your business’s needs as they change over time.

A lot of SLAs should run around the clock, but some should only be used during business hours. During normal business hours, your service desk team can’t provide true 24 x 7 support for every service you offer. If you have on-call service desk teams and customers who pay for priority support, you will still often have some services that need to be handled on weekdays and some that need to be handled right away, no matter what time, day or night.

The service desk can be set up to stop the clock from running on Saturdays and Sundays, but if you want to make your own rules for company holidays, things can get even more complicated. And, think about making calendars to help teams that are spread out across the country.

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