Most people who draft SLAs are not the individuals who will most likely be living with the monitoring and enforcement of the services.
An SLA should work as a living document, allowing the parties who inherit the deal to work together for the benefit of both companies.
Monitoring, reporting, renegotiating and adjusting the metrics should be an ongoing process.
You expect your internal units to be flexible, responsive to the business climate and provide a competitive advantage to your organization, the same thing should be true of your outsourcer and the SLAs reflect those expectations.
It often requires a multi-disciplinary approach involving technology, financial analysis, negotiation, and contract drafting skills.
If you have never written one or have only done one or two and are now facing a major project perhaps you should get some advice or assistance from an outside consultant who does this type of work for a living.I say that first because I believe in the model and second because of all the many times I have worked to fix, amend or recreate SLAs that were not crafted correctly the first time.The cost of poorly-crafted SLAs is always far greater than if you did it correctly the first time. If you were facing a major remodel of your kitchen would you want an expert contractor/designer to assist you or would you, if you were not an expert, do the work yourself?Again, the cost of errors in such a project is significantly higher to you than hiring the contractor.Conversely if you were hanging shelves in the garage, if you make a mistake the error recovery is minimal, so getting experience on projects with smaller negative potential outcomes is a reasonable decision.SLAs have become an expected part of the IT landscape yet the majority of them are poorly written and often inadequate to protect the interests of the both the client and the provider.The results are disappointed clients, frustrated providers and at their worst, disputes and lawsuits waiting to happen.How should the measurements change if the customer’s requirements change over time?If you pay bonuses internally for good work, shouldn’t you do the same externally?It should detail the customer expectations, measurement of the service, calculation of the metrics and outline the process for correction and reporting and provide for remedies in the event of failure.An SLA may be external or internal but the key is to get all your information up front, including your business requirements so you can draft a document that will reflect the expectations of the customer. The amount of effort you expend on an SLA is dependent on the complexity and details of the SLA.