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Creating Customer Satisfaction through Service Level Agreements

contract It's impossible to make a customer happy unless you are both measuring customer satisfaction by the same standards. In order to do this, some service level agreements (SLAs) need to be set right away. Marc Tanowitz suggests you keep these tips in mind.

1. SLAs focus on the buyer. They are about meeting the customer’s desired business outcomes.

2. Details are important. No two SLA’s should measure different aspects of the same symptom. Also, the provider cannot fail to meet expectations without failing to meet at least one service level.

3. Requirements are the key, not data. Just because it’s easily measured doesn’t mean it’s a good service level.

Therefore, put customer service first. Once you and the buyer agree on what “customer satisfaction” is, you can turn that into something measurable. Avoid ambiguity but keep things flexible. Needs can change, especially in long-term service relationships. The SLAs are to make sure you and the customer understand each other. In the end, that’s what matter most.     

Rachel Ginder

Rachel Ginder was a staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success and joined the team in 2013. She also helped with social media and research.

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