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ITIL :: View topic - OLA Question
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OLA Question

 
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joko
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Joined: Jun 06, 2010
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 2010 5:26 pm    Post subject: OLA Question Reply with quote

Hi All,

I'm new in ITIL and I have some questions regarding the development of OLA. We have multiple IT support groups supporting an SLA does there need to be an agreement between each group
OLA 1. SD and Network Group
OLA 2. SD and Security Group
OLA 3. Network and Security Group
etc etc
Or Can I just create one comprehensive OLA document that covers all the support groups. Who will be the Service Owner of the OLA.

Please help, Thank you in advanced

joko
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Diarmid
Senior Itiler


Joined: Mar 04, 2008
Posts: 1884
Location: Newcastle-under-Lyme

PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 2010 11:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Joko,

I think you are over-complicating things.

Firstly it is your need, not ITIL's command, that you have to consider. What do you need a system of OLAs for? What will be its purpose? What will be its scope?

If you can answer those questions, then you can define the content of the agreement(s) and you can identify the parties involved.

As to the question of whether you can have one OLA covering all your operational support services or whether you need one for each distinct group, the simple answer is to be found in the obvious point that people cannot agree to things outwith their scope and authority. So an agreement between the Service Desk and the Network Group has to be between them. Etc. Would you want to wrap several such agreements into one document?

But, are you sure you need OLA's for your internal groups? Will it not suffice to have properly defined procedures, or is the management of the various groups to far apart for that to work? I would have thought that this was most appropriate for very large organizations. [just thinking out loud] If the party to the SLA "owns" all your groups then OLAs seem unnecessary.
_________________
"Method goes far to prevent trouble in business: for it makes the task easy, hinders confusion, saves abundance of time, and instructs those that have business depending, both what to do and what to hope."
William Penn 1644-1718
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joko
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Joined: Jun 06, 2010
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2010 3:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Diarmid,

Thanks for the reply. Here's the situation, Business Application Service is available to customer with Service Catalog, and SLA is also implemented. In supporting and assuring delivery of this Business application service, Is it better to have a properly defined procedures, as these various support groups are not far apart (sit on the same building) or an OLA is needed.

If OLA is needed, what will be the good approach to develop OLA to various IT departments which are going to assure the services described in the catalog. Service Engineering is the service owner of the catalog and supported by various group. Network, Security , Platform, and Application.

Thank You.

joko
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Diarmid
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Joined: Mar 04, 2008
Posts: 1884
Location: Newcastle-under-Lyme

PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2010 6:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Joko,

your question does not have a theoretical answer in the terms you ask. It is a practical issue whether you can gain from OLA(s) in your case.

I would be more interested in the degree of independence between groups than in their physical proximity. For example if they are separate cost (or profit) centres or come under independent management streams, then it could be worth trying to set up OLA(s).

The underlying point is that someone is responsible for the delivery of service to the customer(s) - let's say this is "The Service Delivery Manager" (SDM). The SDM has to ensure that there is the ongoing capacity and capability to apply resources to support of that service. What you are asking about is how to go about that. Well, everything that is under the management control of the SDM is there to be managed and everything not under the management control of the SDM needs to be "contracted", to provide the required level of service.

For example; there may be a property management group that are responsible for access to buildings, lighting, heat etc. It might be appropriate to have an OLA with this group to ensure your required use of the buildings.

In other words the purpose of an OLA is to ensure a proper arrangement in circumstances where there is not sufficient management authority to mandate the commitment.

This also gives the clue as to how to set up such agreements if you deem them necessary. The agreement(s) will be between the appropriate management authority and the SDM. There would, logically, be one agreement between each appropriate management authority and the SDM. However the procedures could well be more integrated than that, at least at the interface level.

You see I am being all theoretical. For real answers I would have to look at your actual case in detail because it really really really depends.

If your reason for asking is that someone (you?) has noticed OLA in the ITIL texts and thought "that might be a good idea", then I suggest you forget it and get on with looking at what your actual needs are.
_________________
"Method goes far to prevent trouble in business: for it makes the task easy, hinders confusion, saves abundance of time, and instructs those that have business depending, both what to do and what to hope."
William Penn 1644-1718
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Timo
Senior Itiler


Joined: Oct 26, 2007
Posts: 295
Location: Calgary, Canada

PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 5:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

No kidding... It also sounds like your SLA has been struck without much consideration for ability to support, or at least not to the level that you think is required.

If, as Diarmid, said you need for OLA's is simply because somebody thinks they are good to have, then just leave it as is and don't mess the hornet's nest. If, however, there is an actually need based on business situation to have them in place, then you might be faced with the possibility of renegotiating your SLA in case your network, app and other support teams can't commit to required service levels.

Another angle to consider... SLA could have been negotiated actually based on some factual information, rather than a flip of a coin (it DOES happen) Smile. Hence, somebody, somewhere, somehow was asked for their ability to support specific targets that are captured in the SLA. There might even be a document or a series of documents (meeting minutes) related to that. So, just another thing to check.
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