Arena is a powerful tool for our business
Alex Charney Cohen | TrustRadius Reviewer
October 05, 2018

Arena is a powerful tool for our business

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Overall Satisfaction with Arena

We store all of our PLM data in Arena. We control our BOMs and Drawings with ECOs and use the approval process to get approval from stakeholders in 3 different countries. We have quality data and use it for storing all technical reports.
  • Searching. The advanced search is very flexible yet guided to narrow down a search to a short list when you are trying to find something
  • Our migration from Agile and Parts and vendors was complex, but well supported. The transition team met with us weekly and responded quickly to our concerns and issues. Our experience may have been extreme, but Arena stood by us and helped us navigate many tough situations.
  • Administering and reconfiguring the database is very straightforward and quick. I love the fact that an Engineer can come to me and say, "I need this new parameter for a capacitor" and I can resolve his request in 2 minutes.
  • I find it frustrating that the filtering or logic for searches and for reports is different. A database query is a database query and I should have the FULL range of options (like looking for NULL values) everywhere, or using NOT in search logic, or using OR in search logic (available sort of, with the ANY search, but not in Reports)
  • Extracting reports from the Quality world is very awkward. Because the details are stored with the field name in a long list, there should be CROSSTAB QUERY functionality built in to Arena that will allow me to extract data in a tabular format instead of a long list of different fields and data. [I currently have to take the output from Arena and put it into MS Access where I perform a CROSSTAB QUERY to reformat the data to a grid with each field in a different column.
  • I would really like to see the functionality (well controlled) to allow Attributes to be DECOUPLED from Revisions, like the recent addition of Cost. I would like to be able to have an Inventory qty attribute for each of my factories, so that the Engineers have some sense of what is on hand when obsoleting a part. It goes beyond that and My intent is to have weekly uploads (refreshes) of Inventory data from the ERP systems used in our different facilities into Arena, where more people in the organization have access.
  • Since we haven't introduced a product, this is a difficult question to answer with a useful number. I can say that Arena has become a tool that everyone in the organization counts on and is the first place to look for anything.
  • Price
  • Product Features
  • Product Usability
  • Vendor Reputation
It was really a combination of Cost and Functonality. Half the Engineering team had experience with Agile and the other half with Parts & Vendors. We needed to be able to access the Agile data as there were 8 years of information and designs in it. Agile was too expensive. Arena hit the sweet spot for us. I am much happier with Arena and the control we have than I was with Agile.
It was difficult for us, in part because we had SO MUCH data to migrate from Agile, both in classic PLM (BOMS & Drawings) info and in quality data. It took us over a year, and we wildly exceeded the scope in the original agreement, but Arena honored it and worked with us, finding bugs in their migration tools along the way. There were 3 different times when our migration was held up because the Arena in house tools had issues or limited capabilities which needed to be added or fixed before we could continue. I'd like to think that we contributed to smoothing out the migration for many other companies because of the complexity of our migration. We were very well supported. Mark Andres was the lead engineer in getting us through the migration and he was great to work with and I really felt like he took the time to understand our needs and represent us to get what we needed. My understanding is that normal migrations take 3-4 months, so our 1 year+ was a serious outlier. We never felt unsupported or ignored.
Agile. Parts & Vendors.
Agile is more complete, but also less flexible. I think that Arena completely beats it interms of the user experience.
Parts and Vendors is old, unsupported and has a VERY limited functionality in comparison.
It works great for PLM data (Darwings, BOMs)
It works OK for quality data
It does not work for Inventory mangement