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Experience Management and XLAs. Chapter 5 - The Business Case

Author:

Jaro Tomik

Digital Enablement

•  Mar 04, 2024

Is your IT Service Team hitting its agreed SLAs but still not delivering value for money?   

You’re not alone.    

It’s a common problem to experience the ‘Watermelon Effect’, and it’s why many ITSM teams are adding XLAs (Experience Level Agreements) to their usual SLAs, as they look to improve their user experience, efficiency, and the relationship they have with their customers.   

Experience Management and XLAs 

Chapter 5: The Business Case 

Ron wakes up well before his alarm. He struggled to fall asleep last night, thoughts running through his head. He has decided not to back down in his quest to implement Experience Management with his client, Poole - not now that he has put so much effort in.  

If he doesn’t do this, no one else will. Poole will continue being just one of many MSPs, and will maybe even miss out on the market shift towards true customer centrism.  

Once in the office, he pulls out notes from a successful business case summary from years ago, hoping for them to work as a template. It states: 

The key to a success will be simplicity, clear display of business value, and a risk assessment, all in a single slide. Ron heard from the leadership before that if it can‘t fit into a single slide, it‘s too complex to get buy-in, and is therefore more likely to fail.  

“Hiya Ron, how are you doing? Have you had lunch yet?” says a familiar voice to Ron.

“Hi Jade, it’s a bit early isn’t it?”  

She chuckles and points at her watch – and is deeply entertained by Ron’s shocked face, as he realises it’s 12.43. “Wow, I’ve been working on the business case all morning without a single break!”  

“That’s dedication!” responds Jade “But it’s time for a break...do you want to have lunch together?” 

“Sure, but only if it’s my treat! I have a slide to bore you with as well.” 

“Let me be the judge of that,” replies Jade, with a curiously raised eyebrow.

 “Any thoughts?” asks Ron with an obvious vulnerability in his voice, as he enjoys a dragon roll with wasabi. Or a green-coloured horse radish, to be more precise.  

“It’s a start for sure.” replies Jade. 

“That bad, huh?” 

“Ah, don’t feel discouraged, I tend to be brief in my responses when I’m focusing, it will need some work though. How much do you trust me?” asks Jade in a half-theatrical, half-mysterious voice. 

“At this point, I’m going to take any help I can get!” says Ron, joining hands into a praying gesture. 

“Give me approximately 6 minutes and 23 seconds of silence please,” she requests, laughing.  

Ron nods and takes out his phone to check his notifications. Not only has he missed a couple of major incident email chains and WhatsApps from Mark but, also a conciliatory message from Maeve: “I know work has been stressful for both of us lately. But I can’t wait to see you tonight! X 😀” 

 ‘That’s sweet’, thinks Ron. 

“Ta-da!” Exclaims Jade, before he manages to reply to Maeve. 

“Notice how I have made your points more specific, added more benefits, and linked business ROI to actual business outcomes such as Talent Retention and Attraction, Cost Optimisation, Resilience, or Gaining Market Share.” 

“This looks awesome, I could not do this without you - thanks a lot!” 

Ron barges into Mark’s office, excited as a Duracell bunny: “I have got it – look!” He is met with a raise of an eyebrow and a shaking head caused by Ron’s complete lack of good manners. “Not even a knock?! Anyways...show me then.” Mark looks through the slide in a room so quiet he can hear Ron’s excited, adrenaline-pumping heart. 

“Alright. You can have it your way...But! If this is not a success, it will be on you!” 

“Thanks, I appreciate it!” replies Ron, turning around before leaving the office, adding: “To be fair, if we do not transform our MSP business, we may all be out of jobs anyway.” 

“I guess.” replies Mark with a sigh, trying to regain focus on end-of-month reporting again. 

With the business case verbally approved, Ron will send it to Mark for written approval, whilst getting back to finalising the slides and preparing for tomorrow’s customer presentation. It’s time to head home after another long day, and join Maeve for dinner.

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