Overview[ edit ] A service-level agreement is an agreement between two or more parties, where one is the customer and the others are service providers. This can be a legally binding formal or an informal "contract" for example, internal department relationships. The agreement may involve separate organizations, or different teams within one organization. Contracts between the service provider and other third parties are often incorrectly called SLAs — because the level of service has been set by the principal customer, there can be no "agreement" between third parties; these agreements are simply "contracts.
It is often for IT related services that are being provided by IT vendor to a customer. There is quite a bit of confusion in South Africa about service level agreements.
Different people seem to have different understandings of what they are and why they should exist. There are many different kinds of service level agreements, which confuses the issue.
We thought we would set out our understanding of a SLA and provide some guidance on how to get them right. You can also attend a workshop on service level agreements.
What should be in a Service Level Agreement? A service level agreement describes the services not goods that one entity will provide to another. If goods are being provided, a SLA is not the right agreement.
It is a type of contract and in the IT context it is an IT contract. In order to create a SLA that works, you must define: The content is entirely dependent on what the actual service is.
It can be any service that you want to measure ranging from looking after the pot plants in your office to hosting your IT infrastructure. It is necessary to identify and quantify the key activities that will be necessary. Perfect performance is not a realistic criterion. Negotiation of service levels involves a compromise between the clients ideal list of requirements and the need to prioritise these in terms of what is realistically achievable.
Performance measurement can entail considerable negotiation. A balance needs to be struck What happens if service levels are not met?
Once the service levels have been ascertained, it is necessary to deal with the impact of failure to meet them and the level of compensation must be defined. Negotiations often focus on the compensation the service provider must pay for service failure whether it be in the form of penalties, service credits or damages.
Yes, they are theoretically enforceable in our courts, but in practice any legal action in our courts to force the service provider to perform is a lengthy and costly process. Or even to force the customer to pay. A horrible SLA is probably not enforceable. But a SLA is a tool to build a good relationship, and should not be seen as a weapon to use against the other party.
A SLA is a tool to build a good relationship What laws apply? A SLA is a type of contract even though it is called an agreement and therefore the law of contract is the most applicable law. The law of contract is mainly based on the common law like case law. There are lots of recent cases dealing with things like: There are very few Acts of Parliament that are applicable.
What makes an SLA good?
A good SLA accurately records the common understanding between the service provider and the customer. It should be written for the parties and not for a judge in the event of a dispute.
The purpose of a service level agreement is not to be able to enforce your rights in court but rather to try and ensure a positive amicable relationship in which the customer receives services at the levels at which it requires.A good service level agreement should also provide a get-out clause, so you can terminate the contract if the supplier repeatedly fails to meet the SLA.
What to look for in your SLA Our service level agreement template includes some common exclusions and clauses. VENDOR SERVICES AGREEMENT Exhibit C: Service Level Agreement Exhibit D: Implementation or Vendor’s failure to achieve the Service Levels shall each be deemed a material breach of this agreement.
R07/13 Confidential to Kelly Services, Inc. and Vendor 2. This is a Service Level Agreement (SLA) between (insert customer org name) and the Technology Systems Division of the Information Technology Unit Data Center to document.
Guiding principles to service level agreements Business process outsourcing: Finance & Accounting 6 In many first generation outsourcing agreements, service levels only .
TidyForm provides a large number of free and hand-picked Service Level Agreement, which can be used for small, medium and large-sized enterprises. You can find practical, colorful files in Word, Excel, PowerPoint and PDF formats.
Consulting firms that provide support to their clients use service-level agreements to make sure both sides get what they need. This SLA template, updated in November , can be used to hammer.