Walmart announces e-commerce officer change, new Store No. 8 leadership

by Kim Souza ([email protected]) 3,359 views 

Walmart has hired nearly 50,000 personal shoppers for its grocery pickup service. It's "a huge milestone given the job didn't exist three years ago," said Tom Ward, senior vice president of central operations at Walmart U.S.

Tom Ward was promoted to executive vice president and chief e-commerce officer for Walmart U.S. ahead of the upcoming departure of Casey Carl after just eight months at that job. Carl is the third high ranking executive to announce an exit from Walmart in recent weeks.

Walmart U.S. CEO John Furner announced the move Thursday (Jan. 20) in an internal memo. Furner joined the online merchant teams of the Walmart e-commerce and in-stores into one unit last year. Carl joined Walmart in September 2020 to oversee omnichannel strategy and in May 2021 Furner chose him to lead the business.

Furner said in the memo Carl has led the online business growth and has been an advocate for Walmart’s third-party marketplace and Walmart fulfillment services.

Ward, who was handpicked to lead the Walmart training academies in May 2015 by Judith McKenna, then the chief operating officer for Walmart U.S., worked six years at Asda, Walmart’s former grocery retailer located in the United Kingdom.

Ward has risen in the ranks since joining Walmart U.S. in 2015. He spent the first two and half years getting the academies operating, and in October 2017 he was promoted to manage digital operations, e-commerce, online grocery and last-mile delivery. A year later he was promoted to the senior vice president level with more responsibilities for those areas. In January 2020, Ward was put in charge of customer product services and in May 2021 he moved to senior vice president of last mile, in-home and drones/automated vehicles. Ward also became a board member with the retail giant’s Mexican subsidiary Walmex in April 2021.

Furner said in the memo Ward’s promotion is effective on Feb. 1 which begins Walmart’s fiscal year. He credits Ward with playing a key role in building and scaling Walmart’s online grocery business and he has worked with the e-commerce unit to lead the final mile delivery business.

Furner said in his new role Ward will oversee site operations, marketplace, Walmart fulfillment services, omni returns and pickup and delivery. He said the company is still evaluating who will replace Ward’s position and duties.

Ward was not the only move announced Thursday by Furner.

“With the growing connection between our enterprise strategy and the incubation work done by the Store No. 8 team, we have made the decision to move Store No. 8 to JenniferJackson, senior vice president of enterprise strategy, mergers and acquisitions and strategic partnerships. Scott Eckert, senior vice president of next generation retail, Store No. 8 will continue to lead this work and report to Jennifer (Jackson),” Furner states in the memo.