As if that isn't a big enough field of candidates to decipher, you are also interested in exploring Extensis' Portfolio 4.0, a digital asset management program that can handle the needs of a single user, or a large enterprise. You heard from a colleague that Portfolio 4.0 works in both a standalone and client-server configuration, and includes a plug-in that also lets the user access and distribute assets over the Internet.
Boy, you are one busy person!
"For commercial printers looking to integrate a DAM system, there are many factors that should be considered. Most important, though, is to make sure that the product under strong consideration is flexible and customizable," advises Jay Greenwell of North Plains.
"Each commercial printer has its own set of needs and requirements, needs that a single DAM product may not be able to answer right from the box," Greenwell cautions. "It's critical that commercial printers make sure the DAM product is flexible enough to fit into the company's current workflow and will be expandable in the future through the use of open standards. Proprietary technology may not be a good ticket for future DAM expansion at any given site," he adds.
When evaluating DAM solutions, choose systems that are based on open standards and a package that allows you to provide custom interfaces, so agrees Brad Giles, COO at Digital Art Exchange (DAX).
"Don't be afraid to ask for help from companies like DAX, which have the breadth of experience necessary for proper integration," Giles states. "DAX has found that the reluctance to fully embrace DAM applications has more to do with confusion among printers and prepress providers about the multiple applications on the market—presently more than 75—their resources for formulating a DAM strategy within their organizations and determining how best to fit a DAM solution into their existing workflows."