Experience Level Agreements (XLAs)

Experience Level Agreements are here, and we know how to set them up - from SLAs to XLAs with ease.

Definition of Experience Level Agreement (XLA)

Experience Level Agreement (XLA) measures the outcome and value of the service offered. This is HappySignals definition, you might want to read this article on definitions of XLAs, as there are nowadays many different one.

What are Experience Level Agreements (XLAs)?

SLAs (Service Level Agreement) measure the process or completing an objective - XLAs, on the other hand, measures the outcome and value. This is where HappySignals see the Service Management heading. 

It's easy to create SLA's that you can meet, for example Time-to-Resolution, but did that resolution give the outcome and value for the end-user that they were looking for?

HappySignals allows you to setup XLAs without touching your current SLA structure, in ServiceNow for example, so that you can instantly move into the Experience Level Measurement and not make it a harder topic than it actually is.

“SLA's measure the process - XLA measures the outcome and value”

- Sami Kallio, CEO of HappySignals


What are the Benefits of XLA?

The main benefits of XLAs include: XLAs measure the business value of the Service Desk, XLA measurement increases co-operation, it's more motivating metric for Service Desk teams, allows you to create moving targets in a positive way and lastly it's about driving business value of service management. To learn more read full article of top benefits of XLAs.


How to get started?

Many people talk about XLAs, but as manager of service management in your organisation, how do you really get started?

1. Baseline Your Service First

One principle would be not to setup one static target number merely based on example values from benchmarking or other sources. You should always do a baselining of your individual service performance level first. Measuring the starting level makes it is easier to set up an individual and realistic improvement target for your organisation and/or vendors.

With baselining you can also take into consideration the differences in rating behaviour between countries and user profiles.

For example, a good performance in one country can be different in another. A specific IT user profile may experience a service differently to another.

Baselining allows you to understand what kind of rating behaviour the employees in your organisation have, in order to setup realistic targets. In HappySignals Analytics you can see your baseline after one week. Then, you can move to step 2.


Organisational maturity matters, but if you take XLA as a journey, then it's easy to map out the steps you need to take. Let us show you how simple it actually is to transform your organisation from SLAs into XLAs.


2. Aim For Improvement

Another principle would be not to tie one static target number to deals for a long period. Having one target number for a long period of time kills the culture of continuous improvement.

Instead, you should agree to increase the target number when you’ve been able to improve the scores. Reaching or exceeding the target should be rewarded in order to maintain continuous improvement.

Remember that improvement is always possible. So far, our customers on average have been able to improve their Happiness by 16% after starting to measure Happiness with HappySignals.

3. Set Targets

In HappySignals, you can set XLAs with one slider. Through your learnings throughout step 1 and 2, you can set your targets for the next 6 - 12 months.

set-XLA-in-HappySignals_Experience _Level_Agreement_made_simple

4. Share the Results With Everyone

HappySignals Live Screens allow you to display your XLAs to the physical office space, so when ever people go and get a cup of coffee, they are exposed to the real-time XLA performance and targets. Nobody can say that they didn't know what your targets are.

Why Not Use Average CSAT Score of the Month as an XLA?

Use the NPS style Happiness instead to create an average score when setting targets. Happiness reacts faster to changes in service level. The larger scale in Happiness (-100)-(+100) makes it also easier to pinpoint problem areas.

Happiness in HappySignals Analytics is always available in realtime. There is no need to wait for monthly calculations etc. Monthly average scores would rarely change, so it would be a vanity metric.

5. Cultural change

Progression from this practical work is that you can change your company culture to focus on experience. You cannot jump there in one go, but getting there is not rocket science. Contact us to learn how you can start your journey easily into the world of XLAs.

See it in our product

HappySignals allows you to set your Experience Level Agreements, without touching your currents SLA models in your ITSM platform.

in 40 seconds, you could have your XLA set, watch how


Customer who use XLAs

44% Increase in happiness Avanti West Coast
3500 employees
Avanti West Coast

Avanti West Coast, previously known as Virgin Trains

Learn more
Transparency with customers Enfo Oyj
40000 employees
Enfo Oyj

Focusing on Employee Experience to Improve Services

Learn more
  Metso Outotec
15600 employees
Metso Outotec

Everyone can utilize HappySignals data

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XLA based on Happiness Score™ Orbis Partnership
25000 employees
Orbis Partnership

No More 'So What?' Metrics

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Our Podcasts on XLA

Experience Level Agreement

37. #XLA - Is Happiness Overrated with Giarte CEO, Marco Gianotten

Happiness - a term that can be imagined as something very fluffy. However, it is also a term that grows increasingly ...

Learn more
Experience and Outcome Metrics with Barclay Rae

Barclay Rae has been working in the ITSM industry for over 30 years with organisations such as SDI and ITSMF UK, as ...

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#XLA - The Benefits of Experience Level Agreements

SLAs are a thing of the past, with Employee Experience a big trend for 2020 as well as a key driver for CIOs to prove ...

Learn more
#XLA - What are Experience Level Agreements?

Experience Level Agreements are an ever growing topic in ITSM. However, the term has never been given a single ...

Learn more
What are the Benefits of XLA?

SLAs are a thing of the past, with Employee Experience a big trend for 2020 as well as a key driver for CIOs to prove ...

Learn more
The Watermelon effect of SLA's on ITSM and Service Experience. Why XLAs?

What do you think about the value, and appropriateness, of IT service desk service level agreements (SLAs)? Are you ...

Learn more