Digital production has its own quirks and they vary heavily from one project to another. Some projects are largely focused on animation, other may be focused solely modelling and rigging, or just lighting (shading), VFX, simulation, rendering, etc. Or could include all of these.

The production line maybe quirky but sure has its redundancies which can be automated, thus reducing unnecessary boilerplate work and logistics.

What software would you recommend through which one could:

  • assign tasks to users, enabling easy task management
  • handle multiple project simultaneously, hence project management
  • maintain different version of a particular digital asset and its dependencies, hence digital asset management
  • add custom triggers like sending out email notifications, toggling task status, rendering etc

I don't require that any recommendations be for a specific operating system - cross-platform would be better but if it's OS specific it's okay.


4 Answers 4


I'm a huge fan of Trello. While it is a little more generic than other project management tools (which can be good or bad depending on your needs), this does make it extremely flexible and adaptable to your particular needs.

It covers your first two requirements and probably falls short on the third (you can attach files to cards, but I wouldn't consider it asset management).

It already sends email notifications of activity, and offers an API for further customization. The API would allow you to do anything that falls under your fourth requirement, and you could even set up a bridge with some other asset management tool.

  • 1
    Hi josh3736, for the sake of this site's quality and health I have opened a discussion about this answer on meta. Mar 3, 2014 at 18:19

My company tried two project management systems, I'll try to point the pros and cons of each :



ActiveCollab is written in PHP and you can host your own copy. It is now used as our primary bug tracker but is also dedicated to manage projects. Its conception is project-centric, providing various features around them : planning, users, time tracking, invoicing, ticketing, etc.


  • Easy to setup
  • Variety of community plugins
  • Tickets and discussions are as simple as helpful


  • UX (many clicks)
  • Lack of built-in reporting tools
  • No workflow automation (template projects with milestones can fill the gap)
  • Gantt diagrams and resource planning are painful to use and read



Wrike is used by our marketing team because they needed a more reactive tool than ActiveCollab. They also deal with a bunch of freelancers and it seems third party communication is easier than it is in ActiveCollab. I did not use it myself but the echoes I heard are really positive.


  • Built-in ressource planning and easy to use Gantt diagrams
  • Collaborative-oriented (google drive integration is out of the box)


  • I can't tell for now, but I'll ask my colleagues

I'd suggest CEITON workflow system This is a workflow management systems, rather than just project management software - conceptually, you have a master workflow that encompasses all the different processes (as sub-workflow) and then for each project, set up just the sub-workflows e.g. lighting, rendering etc. that you need.

Setting up and implementing your workflow would be a significant investment, but once it's up and running when you kick off a project each task in turn goes automatically to the next user or group when the previous task is completed, so you eliminate a lot of the unnecessary work, co-ordination, logistics etc.

As it is focused on the media industry it also has a meta-archive feature for digital asset management and can have customizable notifications, triggered emails etc. Also interfaces to other systems e.g. accounting. It's also web-based.

As disclosure I work for the parent company of the company that makes the Ceiton software.


If it's not important that this software be free to use, I can suggest you Adobe Digital Publishing Suite, Single Edition.

Adobe Digital Publishing Suite, Enterprise Edition

With Digital Publishing Suite, Single Edition, you can use familiar InDesign skills to create, develop, and deliver iPad apps like brochures, portfolios, yearbooks and annual reports—with engaging interactive elements such as slideshows, embedded audio and video, pan and zoom images, panoramas, 360-degree object rotation and more—without writing code. Single Edition is now included as part of Adobe Creative Cloud. With a Creative Cloud membership, you can build an unlimited number of iPad apps and submit to the Apple App Store.

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