Service Level Agreements for IT Service Desks

Getting Started: Establishing An SLA

1. Understand the time commitment. Do not underestimate the time and commitment involved in this process. Your entire organization needs to be committed to implementing SLAs. Once you start this process, you are clearly defining your service commitment to your customers. The creation of an SLA is not just the function of the Support Center because it is not just an agreement between the Support Center and customers that call there for help. Ultimately, everyone in IT supports the customer through the Support Center. The Support Center will not only be setting customer expectations for cases it resolves, but also for those cases elevated to 2nd and 3rd level support groups. Everyone needs to be committed to the service goals of the SLA.

2. Understand your customers’ needs. Become familiar with your customer’s daily operations, processes, and business initiatives. Take time to develop a list of all services and products that require SLAs.

3. Identify participants. Identify all the stakeholders that should participate in the service management process. This includes your customers, as well as any other internal/external organizations that assist the Support Center in providing support to your customers. Be sure to include the decision-makers. While this task may seem daunting, this process is an excellent tool for building cross-departmental teams.

Here is a great White Paper on Implementing Service Level Agreements. See 

Select Implementing Service Level Agreements: "The Critical Element in Service Delivery"