A love letter to Onshape from an admirer.
February 21, 2022

A love letter to Onshape from an admirer.

James Fitch | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with Onshape

Onshape is primarily used in our new product development group though not exclusively. We are primarily a SolidWorks shop, but I have been pushing the use of Onshape as an alternative platform since I started here at Nu-Way. When we do use it, it is for the complete development of an end product for a customer and all modeling and drawing generation is performed using it.
  • Always on and available in any level of machine. No need for a workstation.
  • Lack of files and need to manage same.
  • Like the document approach where everything related to the project can be in a single logical container.
  • Like the overall speed and lack of crashes or need to update.
  • Like that it will import nearly anything. We often use it as a file translator for the SW folks.
  • Like the constant development and frequent feature improvements.
  • Really like the support. Nearly every time we need assistance with something and submit a ticket, there is a rep responding within literally, minutes. Best support in the business.
  • Like the team too. Always easy to get in touch with and responsive to issues and or questions.
  • Feature scripts. We don't yet program our own, but we do use those created by others. Having that ability really opens up what the tool can be if you can program it. I'm learning Python right now because I want to be able to dig into that side of the tool and see what I can do.
  • Sheet metal tools. That is the number one issue holding back the wider deployment in our environment. As a sheet metal fabricator, that is the realm we work in 95% of the time, if not more.
  • Maybe some additional mates like a center mate that would infer a center point between two other features.
  • Faster performance. It has gotten noticeably faster over the last couple of years, but nobody ever complained about faster response times, so more is more.
  • On the plus side, when we do use it, the process is really frictionless and I can see a time when if it were our primary platform, there would be a good deal better ability to share information with one another.
  • The ROI is not clear yet since again, it is not yet our primary platform. In a very real sense, it is still viewed as an extended beta evaluation until or when the tools in Onshape are the functional equivalent of those in SW.
  • I'm not sure how much time or effort the IT staff spend on maintaining SW, but I do know that each version rollout is quite an effort whereas Onshape does that on the fly and there is literally no effort required by IT other than to provide a fast internet connection.
Without exaggeration, I think Onshape has the best support in the business. They have set new levels of expectation from how I view software support. We could not be happier with that aspect of our Onshape experience. In fact, I often refer to it when speaking to other software companies as an example for how they should model their support. It's that good.
That was a while ago, but it was basically sign up and go. The online tutorial materials are great and really, once you get going, it is remarkably easy to learn. Plus there are plenty of tutorial videos on a whole host of topics that clearly illustrate how to do various tasks. I am largely self-taught and that is coming from a place where I was familiar with 3D CAD, but had never really dug in to learn it. At this point there are not too many things that I am afraid to tackle based on just using it.

Do you think Onshape delivers good value for the price?


Are you happy with Onshape's feature set?


Did Onshape live up to sales and marketing promises?


Did implementation of Onshape go as expected?


Would you buy Onshape again?


Microsoft 365 (formerly Office 365), SmartDraw, ProjectManager.com
Basic modeling is very quick and easy. I particularly like the top-down modeling approach and Onshape is architected with that in mind. Drawings are now much more fully featured and perform well, so no real issues there. I really like that we can share the environment within and outside the organization which allows for a high level of transparency with the project stake holders.
We don't use the release cycle aspect of Onshape since the rest of our organization is based on files and using PDM for controlling and distributing them. We have discussed how we might use Onshape for that whole workflow, but until it is the primary CAD tool, will not likely pursue that for now.

Evaluating Onshape and Competitors

  • Product Features
This was based on my belief that premises-based software's days are numbered and tools like Onshape represented the future. Of course, the tool set has to be on par with the software it aims to replace and in the beginning, that was not the case, but Onshape have been steadily chipping away at that feature gap ever since and are closing in rapidly. I suspect that in the not too distant future, the choice will not be based on features or performance, since the price of entry will be equity on that front, but ease of use and cost of ownership, both of which Onshape excel at.
I would do it again without hesitation. I guess in retrospect, I had hoped the level of interest and adoption here would have taken hold sooner, but as the tool evolves, the perceived difference between Onshape and SW will, I hope, diminish. Put another way; If I were to start an engineering-based organization today, I would select Onshape.