Have you outgrown your CRM? (and why you should migrate from GoldMine CRM)

Migrate from GoldMine CRM? Are you serious?

Back in 2008 I had to make a difficult decision. After many, many years invested in GoldMine, it was finally time to move on. To migrate from GoldMine CRM. A decision I didn't take lightly! 

My relationship with Goldmine had been a long one. I’d written (and sold internationally) add-on software for GoldMine – with moderate success I might add. I'd built up deep knowledge of its database, not only in how tables are related but also the quirky way that GoldMine stores data.

I was a bit of a GoldMine geek, relishing the opportunity to answer questions on internet forums.

So how could I simply leave all that experience behind and jump ship - to migrate from GoldMine CRM? In many ways it was simple. 

If I didn't move on, the value of my expertise would wither on the vine. 

Having been involved with GoldMine since 1995, I feared I'd need counselling to get over the loss! But, perhaps not so surprisingly, moving on was a breath of fresh air. I can honestly say that I've never looked back.

What's so bad about GoldMine CRM?

It's not that there's one big, glaring fault. It’s a multitude of things where GoldMine has just not kept up. Let me share a quick story to illustrate my point...

In 2003 GoldMine was on version 5. I'd developed some add-on software that provided a really slick way to search and filter data. It caught the eye of a prospect in the US who was still on version 3, probably dating back to around 1993! 

Imagine my surprise when I discovered that the only real thing that had changed in 10 years was a single additional address field! This pattern of not updating the software was the factor that pushed me over the edge eventually.

In fact, in doing my research for this article, I watched a GoldMine product video from early 2021. The application looks exactly the same as it did in 2008, back when I decided I’d had enough!

A modern CRM system should be frequently updated to take advantage of the latest technologies, integrations, user interface improvements, and feature development in response to user demands. All concerns that GoldMine seems... well, unconcerned with!

Here are six more examples of where GoldMine is falling behind, and why you should consider migrating from GoldMine.

Organisation and contact on a single record

Also known as contact-centric, to the average GoldMine user the way the product functions might seem convenient as you can simply leave the organisation blank if you don't know it.

However, the problem comes when you've got multiple employees, say 200, in one organisation. It means that when you look for the chronology of interactions (phone calls, emails, etc.) at the Organisation level, you'd end up having to scroll through all 200 records!


Modern systems... have a record for an organisation and a contact (person). People who work at the same organisation are stored in a tab of related data. Interactions with individuals are stored against the contact record, and are also summarised at the organisation level. This creates a global view of how you interact with that organisation.

Email addresses and mobile phone numbers are stored on the person’s contact record, and information about the organisation like turnover, number of employees, etc. are stored on the organisation record. This makes for much better modelling and a more intuitive system. It also makes reporting, metrics and dashboards a lot more powerful.

Difficult to store related data

The GoldMine Details record type can store additional information related to a contact. For example, ancillary information like a customer profile, registration details, and/or serial numbers of different products. This record has 8 fields, many of which are limited to 20 or 40 characters. You cannot change the length, or add additional fields.


Modern systems... will allow you to change field lengths, create new fields, and even create entire new record types.

Poor email integration with Outlook

GoldMine chose to embed an email client into the system. Outlook integration is an option, but it's buggy and I've never seen it work properly. The danger with all of the records being inside GoldMine is that everyone can see everything – including, for examples, emails about disciplinary actions, etc.


Modern systems... have great Outlook integration, allowing you to choose which emails you want to share with the CRM system. You can even set up rules to automatically link certain emails.

Database design is severely restrictive

As a software developer, one of the craziest things I ever encountered was a ‘zip’ (postcode) field that stored the state of 4 checkboxes, as 0’s and 1’s. So if checkbox 2 and 4 are checked in the user interface, you’d end up with a value 0101 in the zip field in the database. An end-user might not think this is a big deal, but to extend the software or integrate with other systems, database design like this causes a lot of problems. In fact, I'd go so far as to call this sort of design lazy!

There are tons of other design issues, like field names that have a maximum character length of 8, and for no apparent reason. Together these increase the chance of errors, and they increase the amount of work a developer has to do to maintain a GoldMine system and keep it bug-free.


Modern systems... have a plethora of data types, including checkboxes, that behave as you would want them to. The data is stored in the database in an optimal format, not as text that has to be interpreted to make sense.

It's not web-based

Possibly the biggest drawback is accessibility. GoldMine needs to be accessed via an installed application. That means using a VPN if you’re away from the office. Alternatively, you can use GoldMine’s synchronisation to provide a copy of the database on a laptop. That is, if you're feeling very lucky! GoldMine’s sync program is best described as a black art, and it's extremely difficult to maintain. It is also quite easy – if you don’t know what you’re doing – to delete data from a satellite system, only to then have all those deletions synch back to the server. Then there are the issues of backups, and of data security.


Modern systems...  have the data stored centrally, accessible over the Internet. Fully backed up in secured data centres, generally with a 99.99% uptime.

Customisation capabilities are poor

GoldMine has a number of glaring omissions , for example, storing sales leads as a discrete record type; and the lack of transaction data - products, quotes, orders and invoices. There's no ability to create new record types, and form layout options are also limited.


Modern systems... have the ability to store your product catalogue. Using these products, you can create quotes, and copy (clone) the quotes to an order or invoice. Whether through Word integration or native PDF layouts, the output of the transaction documents can be whatever you need them to be.

Should you migrate from GoldMine CRM?

As you can see, there are a number of reasons why GoldMine just hasn't kept pace. What's your biggest frustration with it? Is it time that you considered moving on too?

We've helped a number of clients migrate from Goldmine CRM. You can read two case study examples below if you'd like to learn more.

Have you outgrown GoldMine?

If you've hit the limitations of GoldMine? Or, as a GoldMine user are you concerned about the issues discussed above? Is it time for you to migrate from Goldmine CRM?

Whatever stage you're at, if you just want some impartial advice, then click or tap the button below to talk with one of our CRM experts.