Service Design Service Level Management in ITIL – ITIL Course

Service Design

Service Level Management
The Service Level Managementprocess improves business aligned IT service quality and instigate actions to eliminatepoor service.
Purpose and Objectives
Service Level Management  is responsible  forensuring that goals and objectivesof the Service Strategy,Service Design and Service Operation meet internal as well as external targets.
The purpose of the SLM processis to ensure that all current and planned IT services are delivered to agreed achievable targets. This is accomplished through a constant cycle  of  negotiating,  agreeing,  monitoring,  reporting  on  and  reviewing  IT  service targets and achievements,  and through instigation  of actions to correct or improve the level of service delivered.
The objectives of ServiceLevel Managementare to:
•   Define, document,  agree, monitor,measure, report and review the level of IT
services provided
•              Provide and improve the relationship and communication with the business and customers
•   Ensure that specific and measurable targets are developed for all IT services
•   Monitor and improve customer satisfaction with the quality of service delivered
•              Ensure that IT and the customers have a clear and unambiguous expectation of the level of serviceto be delivered
•              Ensure that proactive measures to improve the levels of service delivered are implemented wherever it is cost justifiable to do so
The significance  of ServiceLevel Management  liesin its ability to manage Service
Level Agreements, internally or externally.
There  are  several  types  of  agreements  that  play  important  roles  in  the  Service lifecycle.
•              Service  Level  Requirements  (SLR):  Targets  and responsibilities  documented and agreed for proposed new or changed service.

•              Service Level Agreement  (SLA): A writtenagreement  between the IT service provider and the customer regarding the service targets and responsibilities  of both parties. 
•              Operational  Level  Agreement  (OLA):  An  agreement  between  an  IT  service provider  and  another  division  within  the same  organization  that  assists  with delivering the services.
•              Underpinning Contract(UC): A contract between an IT service provider and an external supplier.
Service Level Management (SLM) should provide a point of regular contact and communication  to  the  customers  and  business  managers  of  an  organization  in relation to service levels. In this context, it should represent the IT service provider to the business, and the business to the IT serviceprovider.
The SLM process shouldinclude:
•              Cooperation with the business relationship management process:this includes development of relationships with the business as needed to achieve the SLM process objectives
•              Negotiation  and  agreement  of future  service  level  requirements  and  targets, and  the  documentation  and  management  of  SLRs  for  all  proposed  new  or changed services
•              Negotiation  and agreement  of current servicelevel requirements  and targets, andthe documentation and management of SLAs for all operational services
•              Development and management of appropriate OLAs to ensure that targets are aligned with SLA targets
•              Review  of  all  supplier  agreements  and  underpinning  contracts  with  supplier management to ensure that targets are aligned with SLA targets
•              Proactiv prevention   o service   failures reduction   of   servic risks   and improvement in the quality of service, in conjunction with all other processes
•   Reporting and management of all servicelevel achievements and review of all
SLA breaches
•              Periodic review, renewal and/orrevision of SLAs, servicescope and OLAs as appropriate
•   Identifying improvement opportunities for inclusion in the CSI register
•   Reviewingand prioritizing improvements in the CSI register
•              Instigating   and   coordinating    SIP for   the   management,    planning   and implementation of serviceand process improvements.
Designing SLA Frameworks
Service  Level  Management  must  design  the  most  appropriate  SLA  structure  to ensure that all services and customers are covered in a manner best suited to the organization’s needs.
There are a number of potential agreement options, such as the following:
•   Service-based SLA
ƒ    SLA covers one service, for all the customersof that service.
ƒ             Difficulties  may  arise  if the  specific  requirements  of different  customers vary for the same service.
ƒ             Difficulties may also arise in determining who should be the signatories to such an agreement.
ƒ             Multiple classes of service may also be used to increase the effectiveness of service-based SLAs.
•   Customer-based SLA
ƒ             SLA  is  an  agreement  with  an  individual  customer  group,  covering  all services they use.
ƒ             Customers  oftenprefer such an agreement,  as all of their requirements are covered in a single document.
ƒ    Only one signatory is normally required, which simplifies the issue.
•   Multi-based SLA
ƒ    Multilevel SLAs usually constitutes three layers:
¾   Corporate  level:Covers  all the generic  SLM issues appropriate  to every customerthroughout the organization
¾  Customer level:Covers all SLM issues relevant to the particular customer  group  or business  unit,  regardless  of the  service  being used
¾   Service level:Covers all SLM issues relevant to the specific service, inrelation to a specific customer group

Producing  SLRs
A draft ofthe SLR is one of the earliest activities within the Service Design stage. It is advisable to involve customers from the outset.
To produce the draft, start with a first outline draft of the performance targets and the management  and  operational  requirements.  Consult  other  processes  for  realistic targets.  Use  this  draft  for  in-depth  discussion  with  business,  which  may  require several iterations.
Provisional targets should also be includedwithin a pilot SLA. It is also important to establish procedures  for agreements  of SLRs for new services being developed  or procured.
The SLR will gradually be refined as the service progresses through the stages of its lifecycle. This pilot or draft SLA should be developed alongsidethe service itself, and should be signed and formalized before the serviceis introduced into live use.
Activities performedwithin Service Level Management are:
•              Determine,   negotiate,   document   and  agree   on  requirements   for  new  or changedservices in SLRs.
•   Monitor and measureservice performance achievements.
•   Compile, measure and improve customer satisfaction.
•   Produce servicereports.
•   Conduct    servic reviews   and   initiate   improvements    within    Service
Improvement Program/Plan (SIP).
•   Review and revise SLAs, OLAs, contracts and underpinning agreements.
•   Develop and document contracts and relationships within business market.
•              Develop,   maintain   and   operate   procedures   relating   to   complaints   and compliments.
•   Log and manage all complaints and compliments.
•              Provide   appropriate   managemen informatio to   assist   i performance management.
•   Make available and maintain up-todate SLM document template and standards.

Service Reviews
Periodic review meetings must be held with customers to review the service achievement, preferably on a monthlyor quarterly basis.
Actions must be placed upon the customer and provider as appropriate  to improve weak areas where targets are not being met.
Particular attention should be focused on each branch of service level to determine exactly  what  caused  the  loss  of  service  and  what  can  be  done  to  prevent  any recurrence.
Depending   on  the  cause  of  loss  of  service,  it  may  be  necessary   to  review, renegotiate or review-agree different service targetsor agreements.
A ServicLevel Agreement  Monitoring  Chart (SLAM)  is used to help monitor  and report achievements against Service Level Targets. A SLAM Chart is typically colour coded to show whether each agreed Service Level Target has been met, missed, or nearly missed during each of the previous 12 months.
Service Improvement Program (SIP)
Where  an  underlying  difficulty  has  been  identified  that  is adversely  impacting  on servicequality, SLM, along with Problem Management and Availability Management, instigate  an  SIP  to  identify  and  implement  whatever  actions  are  necessary  to overcome the difficulties and restore servicequality.
SIP initiatives  may also focus on such issues as user trainingservice and system testing and documentation.
The  SIP  needs  to  be  owned  and  managed,  with  all  improvement  actions  being assessed for risk and impact on services, customers and the business.

Key Process Indicators
Key Performance Indicators(KPIs) and metrics are used to judge the efficiency and effectiveness  of the SLA activities  andSIP (Service  Improvement  Plan)  progress. These metrics cover both the subjective and objective measurements:
•   Subjective measurements:
ƒ    Improvements in customer satisfaction
•   Objective measurements:
ƒ    Number/percentageof service targets being met
ƒ    Number and severity of service breaches
ƒ    Number of services with updatedSLAs
ƒ    Number of services with timely reports and active service reviews
There are cases where challenges will be encountered. These challenges need to be proactively,  as well as reactively  dealt with. Challenges < span style="letter-spacing: .35pt;"> that are not properly dealt with may adversely affect the strategy, designs, plans and desired outcomes of the process.
Some of the challenges in Service Level Management are:
•   To identify the suitable customer representative within the IT organization
•   To designate appropriate representatives within the IT organization
•   To acquire commitment from the Service Desk
•   To formalize and communicate the agreements

The main responsibilities of the Service Level Manger are:
•  < span style="letter-spacing: 2.15pt;"> Achievement of goals for SLM process
•   Awareness of changing business needs
•   Considering Service Requirements of customers
•              Negotiation  and agreements  that support the SLAs with the customers  of the service
•   Ensuring that targets within Underpinning Contracts are aligned with SLA’s and
•   Measuring, recording, analysis and improvement of customer satisfaction
•   Reviewingservice scope, SLAs, OLAs and other agreementson a regular basis
•   Ensuring that all changes are assessed for their impact on service levels
•              Developing  relationships  and communication  withstakeholders,  customerand key users
•   Measurement, recording, analysis and improvement of customer satisfaction

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