Service Level Manager 

Service Level Managers are effective negotiators with responsibility for agreeing service levels and key performance indicators for IT services with the business (e.g. for system availability and performance). They document these in a set of service level agreements (SLAs) and contracts against which they monitor performance.

On the supply side, the Service Level Manager ensures the various IT support teams understand the capabilities they need to deliver effective services, and draws up operational level agreements (OLAs) defining the services that each area is responsible for. This can include managing contracts with third party/cloud services.

They are responsible for analysis and reporting performance against targets to business leaders, and for contributing to plans to improve underperforming services.

The Service Level Manager works closely with the Business Relationship Manager to understand and define requirements for new services. Whereas the focus for the Service Level Manager is on reaching agreement on the level of service, the Business Relationship Manager is typically a more senior role with strategic responsibility to determine which services the IT organization will deliver. Business relationship management is a possible progression route for service level managers.

Typical Tasks

  • Maintain a up-to-date catalogue of IT services
  • Negotiate SLAs with business customers and OLAs with IT support teams
  • Monitor and report performance against agreed targets and performance indicators
  • Carry out service reviews to review performance.

Potential Next Steps

Business Relationship Manager, Supplier Relationship Manager, IT Service Operations Manager.

How to get there

AXELOS professional certifications are recognized worldwide by employers as an indicator of your skills and commitment as an ITSM professional.

The following certifications are aimed at practicing Service Level Manager and will support your development into more senior ITSM roles:

Service Design / Service Offerings and Agreements / Planning, Protection and Optimization

  • Maintain an accurate service catalogue
  • Improve service provider focus on customer outcomes
  • Develop specific and measurable targets for IT services
  • Monitor and improve customer satisfaction with the quality of service delivered
  • Manage customer and IT expectations for services delivered
  • Negotiate and agree service level requirements and targets
  • Understand current and future needs of the business for availability
  • Ensure that service performance achievements meet all of their agreed targets
  • Monitor and understand the patterns of business activity
  • Reduce risks to IT services to agreed acceptable levels.

Learn More About Service Design

Learn More About Service Offerings and Agreements 

Learn More About Planning, Protection and Optimization

Continual Service Improvement 

  • Identify opportunities for improving services, processes and tools

  • Reduce the cost of providing services
  • Ensure that IT services enable the required business outcomes
  • Identify what needs to be measured, analyzed and reported for improvement.

Learn More About Continual Service Improvement

ITIL Practitioner

  • Apply the nine ITSM guiding principles in a real world context
  • Apply the Continual Service Improvement (CSI) approach as a way to structure improvement initiatives
  • Enhance continual service improvement activity through:
    • Organisational Change Management
    • Improved communication
    • Better use of Measurement and Metrics

Learn More About ITIL Practitioner

RESILIA™ Foundation

  • Introduction to cyber resilience
  • How decisions impact good/bad cyber resilience.

Learn More About RESILIA™ Foundation