Why SLAs are Important Documents


A service-level agreement (SLA) is a contract that formally defines a service. In reality, this agreement usually defines when a service is going to be delivered. For example, an Internet service provider and telephone companies usually have an SLA when they make a contract to ensure that the levels of service are defined. Within the SLA, there will be technical terms like mean time between failures (MTBF) and mean time to recovery (MTR).

An SLA usually takes place between two parties. One party is a client and the other party is a service provider. This agreement can be quite formal or informal such as within a department. People mistakenly think that an agreement with a third party could be a SLA as well. A SLA can never be made with a third party. A SLA must be made directly with a customer.

There are very different parts of a SLA. The parts are a definition of services, performance measures,, problem management, customer duties, warranties, disaster recovery and termination of agreement. To make sure that SLAs are followed, the agreements are created with very specifically divided and the parties involved in the SLA are often invited to have a forum for communication. Rewards and penalties can be strictly enforced. SLAs usually have room for annual review of the issues regarding the SLA. The SLA practice became so widespread that it is very common now for a customer to interact with a service provider by including s SLA in many different kinds of service contracts in all industries and markets. Within departments of organizations, they make SLAs with their internal customers of the organization. SLAs are a good way to benchmark the quality of the organization.
SLAs are considered to be the output kind of contracts since the result of the service comes due to SLA. The service provider can show the value of the agreement by organizing themselves to deliver the service required by the SLA. The SLA can define how the organization delivers the service. Defining the service makes it an input SLA.
There are distinctive kinds of SLAs. If it’s important that you need to hold a web hosting company to an SLA, then it may be a good idea to consider some kind of a SLA management suite that can allow you to monitor uptime and downtime in order to know how well a web host is keeping up their end of the SLA.

One kind of SLA is customer-based. This agreement is with an individual customer group. A service-based SLA is an agreement between customers and a service. Multilevel SLA is an agreement that has different levels with a multiple sets of customers for the same services. SLA is an important aspect of the contract and should be carefully read.