Quantifying Cribl: Unpacking the ROI of data pipeline optimisation

by Toks Wahab

For modern businesses, making the most of your data can be the difference between surviving and thriving. But with such mammoth amounts of data being generated every second of every day, organising all this information and sending it to where it needs to be to create the most value can be a real challenge.

That’s where tools like Cribl come in. A leading data pipeline optimisation and observability platform, Cribl streamlines the ingestion, transformation, and routing of data around your digital environment. Having this level of control of data pipelines means that organisations can more efficiently manage data flows between diverse sources and destinations, boosting the performance of data-related operations and reducing overheads in the process.

Cribl facilitates real-time data transformation, allowing users to enrich, filter, and normalise data before directing it to the most appropriate systems or services. Plus, Cribl’s monitoring and control features provide visibility into data pipelines, helping to identify bottlenecks, troubleshoot issues, and make data processing workflows more reliable and efficient.

Cribl’s functionality has huge potential to empower organisations to overhaul data workflows and level up efficiency. But how do you make sure that you’re getting a return on your investment in managing your data pipelines?

The importance of measuring ROI

Any business that’s invested in new technology solutions will know that ROI is a critical part of the conversation, both in the decision-making stages and throughout the solution’s lifecycle.

Quantifying ROI generated from investments in technology helps organisations make informed decisions about resource allocation and strategic planning. After all, you can’t improve what you don’t measure—and by weighing up the tangible benefits against the costs, organisations can gauge the effectiveness of their technology initiatives, justify ongoing investments, or change the course of their tech strategy if necessary.

One of the key benefits of weighing up your ROI is better prioritisation. When you understand where the most ROI is coming from, you can better prioritise projects based on their potential value to the organisation. By understanding the expected returns, companies can allocate resources to initiatives with the highest impact, optimising budget allocation, and maximising overall profitability. This is especially vital when it comes to data management since data is such a lucrative resource and has massive potential to create revenue.

ROI analysis also gives organisations a baseline against which they can compare alternative technology solutions or investment opportunities. With this information at your disposal, your business can objectively and accurately evaluate different options and choose the most cost-effective and beneficial ones.

Quantifying ROI is an important part of continuous improvement too. By monitoring performance and tracking actual returns against initial projections, organisations can scope out areas for improvement, and optimisation strategies, and ensure that the places you’re spending your money align with business goals.

If you want to make sure that your Cribl project is contributing positively to your organisation’s bottom line, you’ll need to crunch the numbers. In this article, we’ll explore the tangible benefits your organisation can gain from implementing Cribl, and how to total up that all-important ROI.

The cost of inefficient data pipelines

Firstly, let’s look at some reasons why an organisation might want to implement a tool like Cribl in the first place. With data taking such a central position in all aspects of business today, from operations and marketing to financial planning, proper management of that data is essential. And those with sub-par data management strategies may well find themselves falling short on a whole range of fronts.

Inefficient data pipelines can create a number of challenges, including:

  • Increased latency in data processing which can lead to delayed insights and slow decision-making
  • Data quality issues which can affect the accuracy and reliability of reporting
  • Scalability limitations that hinder the ability to handle growing data volumes, impacting performance and resource utilisation
  • Ineffective data routing leading to data silos and duplication, complicating data management and governance
  • Higher operational costs due to wasted resources and underutilised infrastructure

In short, ineffective data pipelines hamper your organisation’s ability to effectively leverage data to achieve business objectives. And these inefficiencies can rack up unnecessary costs through resource wastage, missed opportunities, downtime and ongoing maintenance.

These hidden costs can not only impact your organisation’s bottom line but also diminish your ability to harness the full potential of your data. Let’s see how such inefficiencies can create a real impact on a business.

Meet TechMart, a fictional retail company. TechMart runs an e-commerce platform and processes massive volumes of customer data on a daily basis. But due to their inefficient data pipelines, there are delays in ingesting and processing incoming orders and customer interactions. These delays result in:

  • Delayed insights: Sales and marketing teams can’t access real-time data on customer preferences and purchasing trends, leading to missed opportunities for personalised marketing campaigns and product recommendations.
  • More downtime: Frequent pipeline failures and data processing bottlenecks cause system downtime, disrupting order fulfilment and customer service operations. This results in revenue loss and creates an unbecoming reputation for unreliability.
  • Wasted resources: Additional resources need to be allocated to maintain and troubleshoot inefficient pipelines, diverting spending and valuable human resources away from strategic initiatives, like expanding product offerings or improving customer experience.
  • Missed opportunities: Without timely access to accurate data insights, the company struggles to adapt to changing market conditions and consumer demand, missing out on opportunities to optimise inventory management, pricing strategies, and supply chain operations.

The inefficiencies plaguing TechMart’s data pipelines have a cascading impact on various aspects of its business, leading to financial losses, operational disruptions, and missed opportunities for growth and innovation. Sounds like TechMart needs a data pipeline management tool…

The Cribl value proposition

So how can Cribl help an organisation like TechMart optimise its data pipelines and generate better ROI from its data? Let’s take a brief look at Cribl’s core functionality, and how it addresses common challenges in data pipeline management throughout the data lifecycle.

Data ingestion: Cribl can help with the ingestion of data into critical data management tools by parsing and transforming the data into an easily ingestible form that allows for faster ingestion while removing parts of logs that won’t be used by the end user. This helps ingest data from a multitude of sources, like logs, metrics, and event streams, supporting a variety of formats and protocols and formats including Syslog, JSON, and CSV. Providing users with a centralised platform for managing diverse data sources and destinations, the solution helps to streamline operations and reduce complexity.

Data transformation: Once data is ingested, Cribl enables transformation processes to enrich, filter, and standardise data on the fly, improving data quality and consistency before sending it where it needs to go. This process can include parsing, masking sensitive information, enriching with contextual data, and carrying out real-time transformations.

Data routing: Cribl facilitates intelligent routing of data to different destinations based on predefined rules and conditions. By selectively routing data only to the appropriate systems or services, Cribl reduces latency and helps unearth insights faster. This routing process also helps optimise resource utilisation by sending data directly to storage wherever necessary.

Monitoring and control: Monitoring and control features allow users to track the performance and overall health of data pipelines to ensure reliable data processing workflows. Cribl also provides visibility into data flows, processing metrics, and error handling so that operators can identify bottlenecks and troubleshoot issues more quickly.

Scalability and flexibility: Thanks to its architecture and scalability features, Cribl can handle large volumes of data across distributed environments. The solution supports both vertical and horizontal scaling and integration with existing infrastructure, allowing organisations to adapt to changing data requirements quickly, and with minimal resource usage.

Cribl’s unique selling points come together to make for a powerful, unified platform that fosters transformative data pipeline management. With its ingestion, transformation, and routing capabilities, Cribl delivers a compelling value proposition for organisations, empowering them to streamline data operations, improve data quality, and optimise resource usage for better decision-making and business outcomes.

Quantifying the ROI of a Cribl implementation

We know what benefits Cribl can bring, but calculating and quantifying the impact of those benefits is a much bigger undertaking. To work out the ROI generated by Cribl, there are a range of factors that need to be taken into account.

These are just a few of the metrics that you can look into when calculating the value generated by your Cribl implementation, and the total costs involved in running Cribl over time.

Cost savings: One of the most commonly used metrics in ROI estimates; organisations can quantify the ROI of their Cribl implementation by comparing the pre- and post-implementation costs of their data workflows. This can include reductions in infrastructure costs due to optimised resource usage, decreased cloud service fees as a result of more efficient data processing, and lower operational expenses through streamlined pipeline management.

Efficiency gains: ROI can also be measured by assessing improvements in throughput, latency, and data processing times. Organisations can quantify the time saved in data ingestion, transformation, and routing processes, bearing in mind that these improvements often result in faster insight generation and decision-making.

Improved data quality: Evaluating the reduction in data errors, duplicates, and inconsistencies can also be useful. By comparing the frequency of data quality issues before and after Cribl implementation, organisations can quantify the value of improved data quality in terms of reduced rework, enhanced analytics accuracy, and better decision outcomes.

Better scalability and future-proofing: ROI can even be determined by assessing the organisation’s ability to scale data pipelines more effectively to meet growing demands. The ability of Cribl to adapt and scale alongside evolving data needs directly affects long-term ROI. A scalable solution that accommodates growing data volumes and processing requirements without significant additional costs or complexity ensures continued value over time. This will be particularly evident across KPIs like overhead costs associated with scaling infrastructure and improved agility in adapting to changing data volumes and processing requirements. Plus, future-proofing features such as compatibility with emerging technologies and industry standards contribute to ROI by extending the lifespan of the investment, and reducing the need for costly upgrades or replacements.

Time-to-Value: The speed of implementation and realisation of benefits impact ROI calculation by determining how quickly the organisation begins to accrue returns on its investment. A faster time-to-value leads to a shorter payback period and a higher ROI.

Implementation costs: The initial outlay of costs to get Cribl up and running directly can include licensing fees, setup, and deployment expenses. But remember, your ROI calculation should consider how these costs translate into efficiency gains and cost savings over time.

Ongoing operational costs: Maintenance, support, and training expenses influence the total cost of ownership and affect ROI. Lower ongoing costs result in higher ROI, as more of the savings and efficiency gains contribute to the bottom line rather than being absorbed by operational expenses. The ease of maintenance and the availability of comprehensive support and training programmes can mitigate ongoing costs and enhance ROI.

Cribl ROI in action

As Cribl partners and experts in data pipeline management, we’ve seen what kind of ROI the solution can generate firsthand. In one particular case, our client experienced not only improved operational efficiency after implementing Cribl, but also significant cost savings.

This UK-based FTSE 250 organisation wanted to improve its security posture by ingesting more data feeds into its SIEM. However, its cybersecurity team found itself hampered by license limitations, and was prevented from feeding in more data by license utilisation caps.

Faced with high licensing costs, the company needed an alternative solution that would optimise the ingestion of data, reduce license usage, and boost visibility across its environment. The answer was Cribl Stream.

Post-implementation, data ingestion was reduced by 40%, enabling the company to load more data feeds into its SIEM without the need to purchase additional licensing capacity. This has not only allowed the company to increase visibility across its digital environment but also slashed spending on licensing costs by up to £150,000 a year.

“Now that we’ve got Cribl in our architecture, we have the ability to ingest more data feeds without having to buy additional licencing—that’s already saved us money,” said a company executive. “If we didn’t have Cribl, that additional cost would have been between £120,000 and £150,000 per year, on top of what we’re already paying today for our SIEM.”

As well as reducing spending on SIEM licensing, the company has been able to cut costs in other areas. “We’re completely in the cloud, so we’re charged for data that we retain for a longer period. Now that we have Cribl, we can send the data that we want to retain to a cheaper storage solution. That gives us a cost benefit in the long run.”

Quantifying ROI in technology investments is crucial for businesses to justify expenses, prioritise projects, and optimize resource allocation. It enables informed decision-making, ensures investments align with strategic goals, and demonstrates the value of technology initiatives in driving business growth and competitiveness.

And Cribl is no exception. Evaluating the potential ROI of Cribl implementation for specific use cases helps organisations understand the expected benefits, validate the investment, and optimise resource allocation throughout the project. Plus, measuring ROI helps to ensure value on an ongoing basis by enabling informed decision-making, ensuring alignment with business goals, and maximising the value that can be gained from data pipeline optimisation initiatives.

However you decide to calculate your own ROI, it’s clear that investing in more effective data pipeline management has the potential to overhaul your data workflows and yield significant value.

By enhancing data quality, improving operational efficiency, and enabling timely insights, data pipeline optimisation can be a significant driver of business success. Investing in the improvement of data pipelines with a tool like Cribl can generate impactful returns, ultimately resulting in a more competitive edge that helps achieve growth objectives.

Ready to start generating ROI with Cribl?

With RiverSafe in your corner, you can tap into the tools and expertise you need to accelerate your Cribl ROI. Our professional services are designed to help you make the most of your data pipelines and turn data streams into valuable, actionable insights.

Equipped with a deep understanding of Cribl platforms, we specialise in boosting the power of Cribl products to elevate your data capabilities and help you take the next steps on your journey to data excellence.

Start your Cribl journey today

By Toks Wahab