Oblicore Makes SLAs More Meaningful to Managers

The new release of Oblicore's service level agreement management package provides greater flexibility.

Service level management vendor Oblicore on Sept. 20 advanced its business-oriented brand of service level agreement management with the latest release of its Oblicore Guarantee software.

With Guarantee 5.0, the fast-growing Oblicore sought to bring a greater level of personalization to each type of user working with the tool through enhancements in its executive dashboard.

At the same time, the Cambridge, Mass., company, which takes a top-down approach to SLM (service level management), added the ability in the executive dashboard to share pages between staff members. The intent is to allow greater collaboration between service level managers to resolve existing issues faster.

With role-based personalization in the executive dashboard, different types of users can have different views that give them a better understanding of the service level performance data being presented to them. "For someone who is business focused and wants to see the language of the SLA in a way that they understand, they can use widgets and personalized dashboard pages to organize the information," said Erik Hille, director of product marketing at Oblicore.

"Oblicore continues to demonstrate its interest and expertise in looking at service management from a business point of view," said Lisa Erickson-Harris, industry analyst at Enterprise Management Associates in Portsmouth, N.H.

Oblicore is unique in its heavy focus on contract management, said Erickson-Harris, compared to competitors such as Managed Objects, Digital Fuel and Proxima Technologies. Compuware acquired Proxima earlier this year.

"The company is not trying to be a monitoring and management company—rather they are leveraging existing investments in management toolsets, using existing data, and adding intelligence and analytics to make that information useful in the context of service management. The area of contract management is not covered well in the SLM and [business service management] market," she added.


Read more here about Oblicores Guarantee.

Sharing pages between staff members in different departments can also speed problem resolution. "Historically if you have two SLA managers [in different organizations] working on a problem, they had two different views of what that problem looked like. Now they can publish or push the page to share like information and collaborate on the problem to shorten the amount of time it takes to identify and resolve problems and keep customers happy," said Hille.

In addition to the existing contractual view of service level performance, the enhanced dashboard also uses the tools current status engine to give IT operators the ability to look at service level agreement performance within a closed window of time. That allows them to see how service level agreement obligations are performing currently or outside of the contract period, giving customers the ability to determine how realistic SLAs are.

That too is unique to Oblicore, Erickson-Harris said. "I dont know of any other vendor that has incorporated this approach. It enables customers to look at the long-term performance of a service commitment, but also to take a look at another point in time," she said.

In a nod to the IT Infrastructure Library Version 3 best practices released in June, Oblicore also enhanced its service catalog functions to support the notion of managing a service portfolio. "We built on capabilities we had in our contract management system to add version control for contracts in draft form or for retired contracts to help manage the service portfolio itself," he said.

Oblicore was named earlier this year to Inc.s 500 fastest-growing private companies. It saw sales increase in the first half of this year by 159 percent of the same time period last year.

Erickson-Harris attributed that growth in part to "significant growth" in the service provider market which Oblicore serves, along with large enterprises.

Oblicore Guarantee 5.0 is available now. Prices start at $100,000.


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