The SLA Review team lead facilitates the review meeting with assistance from the timekeeper and minutes-taker.
The SLA Review can be a real or virtual meeting. The review can take whatever form is deemed suitable for the organization. As long as all the right attendees can be involved and the correct information can be shared, there is no reason for the review to have a specific format. However, since IT is using the service level management function to build a better service for the business, it is important to consider the nature of the business and the practices the business uses for review procedures. The IT organization may have the technology to deliver a virtual meeting, but it must ensure that this is a format the business is comfortable using and that it offers the openness for discussion that the SLA Review demands.
The review should be held at a time mutually beneficial for both parties concerned. The key to the success of the review meetings, including attendance and perception of the two-way relationship between IT and the business, is for the meeting to be seen as an opportunity for improving service delivery from both sides.
In brief, the SLA Review should include the following items.
Review of the Previous Period
This is the time elapsed since the last review meeting or the time since the SLA was introduced (if this is the first SLA Review). The period is reviewed in line with feedback from the business and the IT organization relating to the delivery of their service. Although it is unlikely that there will be problems bringing any issues forward, consider the following suggestions:
- Review the previous meeting's minutes and actions.
- Identify what went well during the previous period.
- Identify what did not go well during the previous
- Determine if there have been any changes to the SLA or service
level management function for this area during the preceding
Performance Against the SLA for the Previous Period
The review of performance against the SLA should evaluate each area in the SLAs and systematically examine the objectives in the SLA document using the metrics and SLA reports to illustrate the performance against the target. Any feedback directly related to the review of the performance should be noted, including:
- New interest in different measurements.
- Queries on performance and SLA breaches.
- Explanations of SLA breaches or of changes in demands on the
- Differences in the most recent reports and historical
Current issues can be directly related to the service and the contents detailed in the SLA, such as:
- Poor performance.
- Increased downtime.
- Increased business demand for the service.
Peripheral issues can be as important as the central issues and affect the service being delivered, such as:
- Staff responsibility changes.
- Contract issues.
- News in the business (for example, mergers or sales
- Increases in call volumes to service desk.
- New technology in use in IT or the business.
- Current projects.
Items to Note
The issues, explanations, and any actions deriving from them should be included in the minutes for the review, such as:
- Changes to the SLA requested by the business group.
- Changes to the SLA requested by the IT group.
- Preview of next period.
The next period should be previewed at the SLA Review; this can include:
- Predictions for the forthcoming performance against the
- Dates for completion of actions from the SLA Review.
- Forthcoming changes that may affect the service.
- Forthcoming projects that may affect the service.
- Changes in contact details for the forthcoming period-for
- Updates on expected business demand in the forthcoming
period-for example, increased overtime or new staff.
- The date of the next review meeting.
SLA Reviews may produce a variety of deliverables. However, the key deliverable that should be a product of every review is a document detailing the minutes and associated actions from the review. The minutes of the review should document any progress measured against the actions and, if possible, successful closure of the actions, with the desired outcome of improvement to the service.
Examples of templates containing OMR minutes and action items can be accessed online at Operations Templates. These templates can be adapted and used as pertinent to the SLA Review.
Other deliverables that may be a product of the review can include:
- Changes to the SLA document.
- Changes to the services used by the business area.
- Changes to the contacts and business representatives.
- Change requests for the service or components in order to meet
the SLA and business requirements.
- Problem records to be raised because of any breach in an SLA or
performance against an SLA highlighting issues to be
- Updates to the forward schedule of change in line with business
requirements on planned downtime.
It is the responsibility of the service level administrator to track and manage the actions and other deliverables from the SLA Review. Should any deliverables prove problematic, there should be an escalation path through the service level manager for the IT actions and through the business manager for the business organization.
The control of the minutes and updates on actions should be carefully managed because the provision of a quality service at required cost is the goal. All updates should come through the service level administration function in order to ensure that there is ownership and control. The prompt completion of actions from the SLA Review is the result of the review meeting. If issues persist as unresolved and are not successfully managed, commitment to the SLA may decrease.