In an effort to speed up technology development and application, Dearborn’s Ford Motor Co. has selected Vijay Sankaran as chief software and information officer. He will report to Jim Farley, president and CEO of Ford.
Sankaran was most recently at TD Ameritrade for seven years and spent the last four years as chief information officer. Sankaran was previously with Ford for 12 years until 2013.
“We’re going to use technology and software, including how we learn from and act on data, to unleash a whole new world for our customers and our company,” Farley says. “Vijay’s team, together with Hau Thai-Tang (chief product platform and operations officer), and the people responsible for our industrial platform will help us carry out our plan to transform Ford and develop and deliver must-have products and services.”
At Ford, Sankaran will work to improve existing operations and help create and deliver new technologies designed to encourage customers to choose and stay with Ford. He will lead Ford’s global technology and software platform group, which is in charge of the software and information technology capabilities that streamline operations and offer solutions for customers.
“Inventive companies use software, data, and AI to reimagine and deliver highly differentiated product quality, operating efficiency, and customer services,” Sankaran says. “Brand loyalty and growth are turbocharged in organizations that are rich with and driven by data.”
At TD Ameritrade, a financial trading company based in Omaha, Sankaran led the company’s digital revolution, including introducing client-facing mobile applications, infusing capabilities enabled by artificial intelligence for client personalization and self-service, and scaling its trading platform to accommodate the stock trading boom spawned by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Sankaran was also the architect of TD Ameritrade’s software engineering approach that doubled software delivery throughput and built a digital innovation center in Ann Arbor.
“We’re investing in our plan to modernize Ford and aren’t going to cede leadership to anyone,” Farley says. “Technology, software, and industrial excellence are as critical to our long-term success as the advanced vehicles that those competencies will help us develop.”