Technology powered for a people-led future

A customized solution instantly maps and tracks every box in the backroom, helping our store associates to find and move the correct inventory to the sales floor as easily and quickly as possible.

Good technology pushes against the boundaries of what’s possible. Great technology breaks through those boundaries and transforms entire industries. And with each innovation and transformation, countless possibilities for additional innovations and transformations emerge.

But while technologies change, the one constant through every transformation is people. Humans, not bits and bytes, are the immutable heart of every advancement. My experience includes time with some of the most influential companies in the world. Traditional tech companies. And with confidence I can say Walmart is absolutely a tech company, but we’re not traditional.

The reason is simple but significant: our work begins and ends with a fundamental understanding that technology is, at its core, personal. Our starting point for innovation is not to seek out new implementations of tech. Our starting point is people. We seek out experiences that can be improved or problems to be solved, and technology is the solution we bring to the table. People are our spark for innovation.

The 25,000+ associates that make up Walmart Global Tech use technology to further our customer and member obsession, and strengthen our ability to power local businesses. We drive technology to help our customers and members save money and live better. We are people-led and tech-powered.

AI is a friend to people-led

Artificial Intelligence (AI) – and specifically Generative AI – has garnered much of the public’s attention and imagination lately, and for good reason. AI that can write emails or generate new images with a simple prompt is a seminal tool in the evolution of technology. But the value of this technology, just like every other, is based on what people ascribe to it.

Long before Generative AI entered the public consciousness, we invested in various types of Machine Learning (ML) and AI models for our retail business. ML and AI models are the intelligence that power much of our customer and associate experiences – from personalized recommendations and intelligent substitutions to managing our supply chain.

Through our applications of natural language models, we created greater understanding of retail, and specifically, Walmart retail. When you ask for “Great Value Almond Milk,” our tech knows that “Great Value” is a brand name and not just a request for inexpensive milk made from almonds.

The result? Better, smoother, more efficient experiences for our customers, members and associates.

AI and ML-driven personalized and intelligent recommendations on mobile apps can significantly improve the overall retail experience for our customers and members.

Technology in service of people

AI will transform our business – and industry – and make shopping easier and more convenient for our customers and members. This doesn’t mean, however, that technology will replace the power of human touch and ingenuity.

People are what set us apart. I wholeheartedly agree with our Chief People Officer, Donna Morris, who said that our people make the difference, and that technology and people can work together.

Take our cloud strategy, for example, which allows us to ingest data on a massive scale. Our architecture enables us to plug in all the latest innovations. And on this newly strengthened foundation, we can run intelligent experiments to further innovate customer, member and associate experiences.

We are committed to investing in our associates, providing them with the training and development they need to thrive in a tech-powered world. We are also committed to using technology to create jobs. We believe that AI and other technologies can help us to be more efficient and effective, allowing us to offer more products and services to our customers and members. This, in turn, creates more opportunities for our associates and the communities we serve.

Exceeding expectations for a people-led future

Keeping Walmart in front of “what’s next” is a strategic priority. We aim to move with speed and purpose, cognizant that the pace of innovation continues to increase.

I’m so proud of our team and how we’re working together across the business to design experiences and possibilities that customers and members haven’t yet imagined. We’re breaking the boundaries of what it means to be a tech company, and redefining retail to deliver world class commerce experiences.

And we’re doing it all in a way that’s truly authentic and unique to Walmart – people-led and tech-powered.