Service Description – ALS needs detailed descriptions of each service offered in all circumstances, including processing times. Service definitions should include how services are delivered, the provision of maintenance services, operating hours, dependencies, process structure and a list of all technologies and applications used. Other metrics include the timing of advance notification of network changes that may affect users and general service usage statistics. A service-level commitment (SLC) is a broader and more general form of ALS. The two are different because an ALS is two-way and has two teams. On the other hand, an SLC is a one-sided obligation that defines what a team can guarantee to its customers at any time. SLAs were adopted in the late 1980s and are currently used by most sectors and markets. SLAs naturally define service expenditure, but defer methodology at the discretion of the service provider. Specific metrics vary depending on the industry and the SLA objective. Service level agreements can contain many service performance metrics with corresponding service level targets. A common case in IT services management is a call center or service desk.

Among the measures agreed in these cases are: compensation is a contractual obligation of one party — compensation — to repair the damage, loss and liabilities of another party — of compensation — or of a third party. Within an ALS, a compensation clause requires the service provider to acknowledge that the customer is not responsible for the costs of breaches of contractual guarantees. The compensation clause also requires the service provider to pay the client the third-party court costs resulting from the infringement. Service providers need SLAs to help them manage customer expectations and define the severity levels and circumstances in which they are not held responsible for performance failures or problems. Customers can also benefit from SLAs, as the contract outlines the characteristics of the service — which can be compared to THE SLAs of other providers — and identifies ways to assess service issues. Most service providers provide their service level statistics via an online portal. In this way, customers can check whether the right level of service is being met.