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 What’s The Difference Between an SLA and an OLA?

What’s The Difference Between an SLA and an OLA?

The SLA is what the organization (IT Service Provider – Selenium Group) as a whole is promising to the customer. 

The OLA is what the IT groups within the IT service providers organization are promising each other.

Service Level Agreement (SLA)

The SLA states items such as how the physical equipment will be maintained, when the software is to be upgraded, what kind of service will be provided to the customer, what response time the customer can expect, what are the hours of service, etc.

Operational Level Agreement (OLA)

The OLA states what group, within the IT department, provides what support within the parameters of the SLA.

There are different groups within the IT service provider that manage different components within the SLA: Like servers, telecommunications equipment, networks, printers, applications, etc.

The SLA and OLA are both connected internally for process and execution. The idea is that the promise made in the SLA has to be measurable and completely supported by the OLA’s that the SLA is reliant on.

Seems a little more complicated than it needs to be. But it’s important.

Why is the OLA important?

With an OLA, we are able to have more transparency of services provided to our clients. There is another component within this architecture, called a underpinning contract (UC), that deals specifically with external contracts with third-party service providers, that also support or can impact services within the SLA.

]The UCs are a part of the OLA.

Let me put this in layman’s terms. If someone wants to build a house, the SLA is the contract between the homeowner and the general contractor.  It details specifics on what needs to be done and when.  The OLA is the agreement that the general contractor has with all the workers that will build the house.  The UC is the agreement that is in place with independent contractors, e.g. plumbers, electricians, etc.

To summarize, these agreements, SLA, OLA, UC, have to be in place to ensure customer satisfaction.

A managed service provider (MSP) like Selenium, thrives on customer satisfaction. There is no better way to drive this home than using both.

We strive with all our client contracts and agreements to provide the best customer support experience possible. This includes transparency of services across our entire organization. This is NOT a service you get from most IT service providers, so choose wisely.

For more information on an SLA, OLA, and UC that might benefit your company, contact us and we will be more than happy to discuss.

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