10 Reasons Why SLA Implementations Fail

There comes a time where you want to take your IT maturity to the next level. So you take the challenge and decide to set up service level agreements with your business customers. Let's see what you and your partners should NOT do if you want to succeed.

Image credit: © TheThirdMan - Fotolia.com

You will fail in your attempts to create service-oriented organization, if you:
  1. Create the SLA, file it and never look at it again. Project completed.
  2. Look at the document, and then do nothing else. You can always say, you "have" the SLA, right?
  3. Turn the SLA into a 50-page contract, which nobody understands. Not even your lawyers.
  4. State what you can deliver comfortably and stop there, instead of asking the business what they really need.
  5. Agree to KPIs which are not achievable now or in the foreseeable future.
  6. Don't collaborate and negotiate. Argue and wrestle.
  7. Use the SLA as way to protect your back, in case IT is accused of "not delivering".
  8. Don't have a way to track and measure your KPIs.
  9. Can measure your performance, but it is a tedious, manual and error-prone process.
  10. Don't build an understanding and don't obtain buy-in of your employees, both from IT and business departments.
Barclay Rae has a very good guide to SLAs on his website. I recommend you check it out. That guide inspired me to write this post.


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