Katie Mullen, previously J.C. Penney’s chief digital officer, is pivoting to become chief customer officer, the department store announced Thursday.
She will lead “efforts to deliver an end-to-end integrated shopping experience,” and also “continue to oversee e-commerce strategy and omnichannel development,” according to a company press release.
Mullen arrived at J.C. Penney in early 2022, months after leaving Neiman Marcus as its chief digital officer.
J.C. Penney continues to struggle financially, according to filings being provided on an irregular basis by a property trust selling off some of its stores. Many of its locations are in disarray, according to store checks by GlobalData Managing Director Neil Saunders.
The company, which has been owned by two of its landlords for the last couple of years, following its 2020 bankruptcy, has had to configure yet another transformation plan under yet another set of leaders. In addition to addressing its chronic sales declines, that has included filling space once dedicated to Sephora with its own beauty concept, after the LVMH-owned beauty retailer left for Kohl’s.
Mullen is being tasked with improving the customer experience both in-store and online, according to Thursday’s press release. She has already worked to expand its application of customer data analysis to support its brand strategy, and her focus on the “digital enablement of the organization” has been key to its turnaround, the company also said.
“There are encouraging signs that we’re on the right track. We’ve seen an uptick in customers returning to shop with us – an increase in customer frequency for the first time in five years – and they’re spending more,” CEO Marc Rosen said in a statement. “Creating space for Katie to link our digital technology, customer insights and personalization capabilities and to bring it to life through an integrated, end-to-end customer experience is a natural evolution of her role and will help take us to the next level.”