CarMax’s product-based approach to IT pays off

CIO Shamim Mohammad years ago laid the groundwork for fast-tracking an omnichannel sales platform despite the pandemic, by embracing cross-functional product teams.

CarMax’s product-based approach to IT pays off
CarMax

Not long after Shamim Mohammad became CIO at used-car retailer CarMax, he set out to introduce a more agile, startup approach to software development at the company.

CarMax, by then almost 20 years old, was the market leader, Mohammad says, bigger than its nearest competitors combined. Still, it had only a small portion of the massive used-vehicle market, putting it in an interesting position: “We've disrupted the industry, yet we still have a huge runway for growth,” he says.

Preparing for that growth meant breaking down walls between IT and the rest of the company — in some cases literally.

“I physically had to change that space,” Mohammad says of the transition. “I took out all the cubes.”

This allowed him to collocate workers pulled from technology, marketing and operations, putting them together in small, multidisciplinary teams.

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