SLAs and SLOs

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This article shows you how to set up Service Level Agreements and Service Level Objectives, and shows you how to attach an SLA Escalation to an objective.

Contents

About SLAs and SLOs

Service Level Agreements (SLAs) specify the response times you've committed to, for your customers. An SLA will generally have different Service Level Objectives for different kinds of cases. So the objective for a Priority 1 issue may be to resolve the case within 4 hours, while at Priority 3, much more time would be allowed. Each objective includes an SLA Escalation--a procedure that carries out automated actions at set milestones--for example to send out a reminder or reassign a case.

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Important:
SLAs let you track your organization's performance against its commitments, but they don't help you meet those commitments until you tie them to SLA Escalations. The escalations you define can be used to send reminders, inform managers, and automatically reassign things to new owners. The default escalation procedure works well enough to get started, but eventually you may want to define your own.

Once an SLA has been defined, it can be attached to an Account. From then on, any Case attached to that account is subject to that SLA. Or, for an Account that isn't tied to a specific SLA, you can set up a default SLA to use for such cases.

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Note: In a Dynamic Case Management application, there is a single, default SLA. Within that SLA, different Service Level Objectives can be established for different kinds of cases.

Service Level Objectives specify an optional response time and a resolution time. When a Case is created that is subject to a Service Level Objective, A task is created for the Case owner to respond to the Case, and another to resolve it. (The Case owner can assign those tasks to other case workers, if needed.)

When an Agent marks a task as Completed, the time is recorded in the Case history for reporting, the objective is marked as achieved, and the SLA escalation process is stopped.

Prerequisite: Specify Your Business Hours

If you're commited to 24/7 service, you can ignore this step. Otherwise, start by establishing your normal business hours.

To specify your working hours:

  1. GearIcon.png > Account Management > Business Hours Calendars
  2. Select the Normal Business Hours calendar.
  3. Adjust calendar details:
    • Time Zone - Choose your organization's time zone.
    • Days - For each day of the work week, specify the start and end time
    • Holidays - Specify company holidays.
  4. Click [Save]

Working with SLAs and SLOs

Create an SLA

An SLA will include a set of objectives that specify response times for different kinds of cases.The first step is to create the SLA.

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Note: This section only appears in the ServiceDesk application. It lets you create different sets of service level objectives, to match the contractual obligations spelled out in the service contracts you have with your customers.

To create an SLA:

  1. GearIcon.png > Case Automation > SLAs
  2. Choose an existing SLA, or click [New SLA]
  3. Fill in the basic SLA information:
    • Name - Give the SLA a name. For example: "Standard SLA".
    • Default
      Check this box to apply this SLA to all incoming cases, by default.
      (If the Account an incoming Case is attached to has an SLA, that SLA is used.
      Otherwise, with this box checked, this SLA is used.)
    • Description
      Add any descriptive information you like to clarify the nature and purpose of the agreement.
  4. Click [Save]

Create a Service Level Objective

After creating an SLA, or when viewing an existing one, you'll define the objectives.

To add an objective:

  1. Click [New Service Level Objective]
  2. Specify the settings, discussed below
  3. Click [Save]

Service Level Objective Settings

Basic Information

  • Name
    Give the objective a name. The name will typically reflect the condtions specified for the objective, so it is easy to identify in the SLA's list of objectives. For example, "Router Problem" or "P1 Doc Request".
  • Active
    Uncheck this box to deactivate an objective without deleting it.
  • First Response In
    Number of hours or days in which an initial response is expected. If zero, then an initial response is not required.
    Specify hours in whole or fractional amounts up to 24 hours. Specify days in whole numbers (minimum one).
  • Resolve In
    Number of hours or days in which full resolution of the case is expected. This value can never be 0.
    Specify hours in whole or fractional amounts up to 24 hours. Specify days in whole numbers (minimum one).
  • Escalation Processes
    This value can be left open, but you'll probably want to use the default SLA Escalation procedure, or create one of your own to send alerts and perform other actions before deadlines pass.

Start Condition

Here, you determine when this objective applies to a Case. When creating a "Priority 1" objecive for a particular product, for example, you might create a condition that says the objective is applied when the product is "X", and the Case priority is "P1".

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Important:
Typically only one SLA objective is in force at any given time, so each objective will specify one condition (or set of conditions) that no other objective shares.

For example:
    priority="P1";

Learn more about specifying conditions, see Defining Conditions.
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