I use arcmap basic and Map3D. agree with all the comments so far. one area not mentioned is tranferring data to field computers and GPS. I fnd that Map is more agreeable to incoming data collected in the field as it can handle a larger variety on input formats and actually get the georeferencing right. Esri is easier to make a map look good and get it on paper but thats is only because not everyone will break the paper trail and go to electronic gizmos. Terrible thing to say for a forester making a living growing trees to make paper
The most important part of either of these programs and probably mapinfo which I have looked at but never took to is data preparation to get the required or expected results from the GIS. So look at the far end and output and make the data input so you can get there. the old GIGO thing.
Support for esri is more availble on the website. the best support is in the forums which is why M3D shines; better forums; great people.