What Is An Sla And Its Best Practices?
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What Is An Sla And Its Best Practices?

As the world becomes a global village thanks to the internet, more companies collaborate and integrate services, and there is a service level agreement in place that enhances the exchange of information between enterprises and employees. 

What is a service level agreement and why is it so important?

In basic terms, a service level agreement represents an agreement between an employer and a customer, typically the provider and the receiver. 

The service level agreement can be written or stored as a document on the computer. It defines the service standards, as well as the expectations. 

Monitor the following to meet SLA's 

  • Service availability: This is the amount of time the service is available for use. The amount of time it took to close a ticket by an agent was raised by the employees.

  • Defect rates: Include production failures such as backup and restore errors, rework and missed deadlines.

  • Technical quality: Includes program size and coding defects analysis using commercially available tools in outsourced application development.

  • Security: In these highly regulated times, breaches in an application and network security can be costly. Anti-virus patches and anti-virus updates are controllable security measures that help prove preventative measures were taken if a breach occurs.

  • Business results: More and more IT customers are incorporating business metrics into their service level agreements. Utilizing existing KPIs is usually the best approach to improve the quality-of-service management.

Finally, service level agreements are essential in integrating apps or collaborations between businesses as they serve as pre-established norms and conditions. This helps ensure smooth communication in organizations.

The service level agreements should monitor service availability, defect ratios and rates, technical quantity, and service quality. SLAs should be transparent in the metrics and data used for the consistency of services. 

Different departments within a company can also implement service level agreements. It is possible to agree with two departments on regular deliveries made between them. For instance, marketing and sales teams need to be aligned perfectly to work smoothly. Therefore, SLA can provide a set of rules and norms to be followed. The data also speaks in favor, as 65 percent of marketers who have a service level agreement system report a higher return on marketing investment. 

What are the conditions under which a Service Level Agreement is offered?

The service level agreement is critical to the smooth working of departments or clients and provider partnerships. But the perfect service level agreement is not always achievable due to the following constraints: 

  • Too complex: the SLA contracts are typically too complicated or long to comprehend, so they are usually not read thoroughly and neglected.

  • No measurements: the SLA commitments and promises are not measured, making them unreliable.

  • Unrealistic expectations or goals: as humans are prone to exaggerating their behavior, they set goals and objectives that are not realistic and diminish their morale.

  • Non-existent operational agreements: they should be made for smooth functioning as well as realistic goals.

Therefore, managing a service level agreement (SLA) that is reliable and relevant is important for the proper management of contracts and business agreements, and automation and artificial intelligence can simplify this mundane task. 

What are the main benefits of including an AI in SLA? 

The key benefits of involving artificial intelligence in the setting of service level agreements are: 

  • Improved employee service management: For example, if the delay in salary payment to an employee is reported, it usually takes 8 hours and rectified on the same day. This agreement between the employee and the company needs to be updated regularly to keep track of the activities. Hence, it would require artificial intelligence and automation to help track and direct the right department's issue.

  • Employee experience is improved: Employee agreements are met on time and are reliable, fast, and on-time. The employee experience is improved drastically.

  • Increase HR productivity: Artificial intelligence training the models routinely together with automation of HR processes helps the HR department focus on important issues and find solutions.

  • Efficient resource allocation: With the SLA being automated, the resources are automatically aligned and updated.

  • Workforce morale and team performance improve: Since the objectives and goals are predefined and realistic, employees know what to work on, when, and how, all at their fingertips.

Artificial intelligence provides tailor-made recommendations according to the department's requirements, taking its past trends into account and realistically preparing goals for better and better performances.

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