Establishing Outsourcing Contract Service Level Measures

"Properly identifying and developing service level metrics is a major factor in building a successful outsourcing contract. The development and governance of these metrics involves tasks that must occur while the contract is being negotiated (pre-contract) and tasks that occur after the contract has been signed (post-contract).

Far too often, the customer and the provider agree to incorporate service level "place holders" into the contract. Their intent is to revisit the assignment of service level measures at some point after the commencement of the engagement. However, once the contract is signed, it is very difficult to bring everyone back to the table to negotiate additional terms and conditions. The lesson learned is obvious: establish your service levels prior to contract negotiation."

Read more in this article from BNET.com.