There are many things I like about Portfolio. When evaluating different DAM solutions we found that Portfolio had the features important to us while fitting our budget. DAM systems can be extremely expensive and prohibitive for small businesses.
Having the ability to maintain our basic folder structure with the 'watched folder' setup was important to us since we had our own system of organization. But other features were even more important—like the ability to map metadata to custom fields and include enclosing folder/file names as keywords, for example.
As a user, I find the QuickFind field with predictive search as well as the more detailed search capabilities quite powerful. For our assets and file naming convention, using QuickFind usually is enough to bring up the selection I need for most searches. But, digging deeper and refining a search is easy and intuitive.
Another feature I find very useful when collecting images for a project is to flag of the images I want to select for download. This collects them in the "Flagged Assets" gallery so you can download them in one zipped file instead of downloading each file individually.
Smart galleries are also very handy since you can add photos from your catalog to a smart gallery by simply adding a keyword or phrase, for example, depending on the field used in the saved query.
And, thinking long-term asset management strategy, scalability is important to consider. Portfolio can grow with your business through add-on module licensing. We recently added the Smart Keyword module which has improved our search efficiency and, for the nerd in me, is actually fun to use.
There's one minor user interface issue I've noticed in both the Portfolio 2017 browser and desktop app interface. The default size of the Filtered Fields (right-hand) column is quite narrow. It is about the width of the image thumbnails. I would prefer to have the ability to set my own default column width. Currently, you can drag to expand that column which is good but is not retained at relaunch. That ability may be there and I'm just not aware of it. I have not contacted tech support since it's just a minor annoyance. But, I've always found the Extensis support team to be very helpful and responsive to feature requests
Everyone has their own requirements for asset management software but, for us, Portfolio as been a good solution allowing for efficient ingesting, keywording, searching, and retrieval of assets.
Having the ability to organize, identify, and share our collection of assets with our staff has enabled us to retrieve images more efficiently. This has improved our productivity and streamlined our workflow for our various marketing projects.