Management Glossary

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service level agreement

Abbreviated as SLA, a service level agreement is a separate contract or, frequently, a component of a more comprehensive service contract. In the SLA a service provider promises to meet specified levels of service quality, performance and/or timeliness.

An SLA is common in contracts for the provision of computer services. In that case, the SLA might guarantee that the supplied systems will be available at least a certain percentage of the time, support calls will be responded to within a certain time, etc. While common in the information technology services field, that is far from the only use of SLAs. They can be a component of or an add-on to the sale of any type of service.

An SLA typically specifies penalties to be paid by the supplier if it fails to provide the agreed upon service levels.

Contributed by: Managerwise Staff
See: service level agreement

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