Marks & Spencer IT chief Darrell Stein to leave company in summer

Marks & Spencer IT director Darrell Stein is leaving in the summer, having completed a major redevelopment of the company’s e-commerce offering

Marks & Spencer IT director Darrell Stein is leaving the retailer in the summer, having completed a major redevelopment of the company’s e-commerce offering.

Stein (pictured) has been IT chief at M&S since 2006, but the company said his role had “significantly changed” recently. A spokesman said it was “too early” to provide information about a possible successor.

“Darrell developed our new e-commerce platform which has now been delivered,” he said.

“Darrell has done a great job and we wish him well going forward. We have a very strong talent pool at M&S that is being recognised internally and externally.”

Computer Weekly understands Stein has another job lined up, but is yet to announce his plans.

M&S launched its new website last month as part of a greater focus on multichannel retailing. The site was developed over four years, having announced in November 2010 that the company was moving away from its Amazon-based online channel and bringing its e-commerce functionality back in house.

Stein led the redevelopment, and also introduced a range of new technology to branches, such as in-store terminals where from which customers can order from M&S’s entire online range. His team also delivered 191 digital “inspiration screens” that carry editorial-style content about products and trends.

And under Stein, M&S also has equipped customer assistants with iPads to enable staff to demonstrate the retailer’s full range of products to customers, as well as checking size and availability.

“All this in-store technology to encourage customers to use technology to spend money with us has been developed by our in-house engineering team, typically with more agile methodologies – and we will be doing a lot more of that,” he told Computer Weekly last year.

But in the last few years, board-level responsibility for online retail has moved to executive director of multichannel e-commerce Laura Wade-Gery, who in 2011 was poached from Tesco, where she was e-commerce director.

Speaking at the launch of the new M&S website last month, Wade-Gery said: ““We now have the capability to respond quickly and efficiently in a world where customers, technology and trends are constantly evolving.”

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