Nowadays companies seek to offer the best of the best to their customers even above the competitors. In this context, and considering that it is becoming increasingly difficult to meet customer expectations, it is important for organizations to establish agreements that allow them to ensure the quality of service while keeping their promises. For this, it is necessary for each company to develop effective strategies for Service Level Management.
Getting the customer to be clear about the roles and responsibilities of the company even before starting to enjoy a service is vital to create solid relationships and project an image that highlights responsibility and efficiency. That’s why today we bring you some tips to achieve Service Level Management that really meets the needs of customers. Read on and learn much more.
What is Service Level Management?
Service Level Management is a process in charge of carrying out a continuous cycle of agreements; monitoring and statistical reports on the achievement of objectives; to maintain and even improve the quality of IT services. In this process, the results are constantly evaluated in order to detect deficiencies and generate strategies to increase the quality of services, as well as maintain the agreements to which the organization has committed.
In short, the main objective of Service Level Management is to motivate continuous improvement in the company. It does this by ensuring that the services offered are subject to a cycle of approval, supervision, and review. So, in the event of failure, steps are taken to eliminate unacceptable levels of performance.
Service level management includes some basic concepts:
- Service Level Requirements: Corresponds to customer requirements for IT services. In other words, this document accumulates information about customer expectations and needs for IT services.
- Service Level Agreement: the agreements defined between IT (provider) and companies (customers) to determine service delivery levels.
- Operational level agreement: these are internal IT agreements. This document identifies the responsibilities of both parties and sets out the goods and services that can be used.
- Subcontracting contracts: are contracts established with external service providers specifying the agreements for the provision of services delivered by these suppliers.
What are the advantages of good Service Level Management?
A good SLM can bring multiple benefits to companies, among them we have:
- Improvement in the quality of service.
- Identification of weak points.
- A decrease in downtimes.
- Greater customer satisfaction.
- Enhancement of the economic activities of the company.
- Saving time and money.
- A decrease in negative situations generated by misunderstandings or carelessness.
- Fulfillment of objectives.
- Creation of a clear and consistent vision of the level of service required.
- Intelligent priority setting.
Tips for a successful SLM
#1 Identify your company’s technical limitations
The best way to meet your customers’ expectations is to promise them only what you can deliver. In order to do this you need to know your technical limitations in depth; this way your SLAs can clearly reflect your availability and capabilities.
One of the best ways to identify these limitations is through the members of your organization’s technical and IT team. These professionals have extensive knowledge about the performance of your company, so they are very useful when determining the level of services you can offer.
When executing this process, try to base your analysis on factors related to your systems such as performance, fluctuation, delay, response time, scalability conditions, etc. This type of studies can help you not only to define limitations but also to create a plan to improve those aspects of your organization that require priority attention due to their importance for the business.
#2 Pay attention to the legal context of your business
The creation of Service Level Agreements is also based on certain legal conditions. Following these conditions will allow you to maintain service levels within a framework that conforms to all legal rules and requirements.
Also, you must ensure that the agreement is written in simple terms so that all parties, regardless of their technical knowledge, can understand each of the terms of the contract.
#3 Establish adequate metrics
Metrics are at the heart of Service Level Management. So when establishing any agreement you must specify which metrics you are going to use; they must be easily collected and analyzed. The best way to study the information quickly is through a software tool. Therefore, it is important that you think about automating the measurements if you want to offer a complete and quality service.
An excellent solution that you can use in this case is Freshservice. A service desk based on the best practices of ITIL, which will allow you to carry out more easily, all processes related to Service Level Management.