Nordstrom has named longtime company executive Geevy Thomas, president of Nordstrom Rack, to the newly created position of chief innovation officer.

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Nordstrom has named longtime company executive Geevy Thomas to the newly created position of chief innovation officer.

Thomas, who served most recently as president of Nordstrom Rack, will lead a team charged with finding ways for the company’s full-line stores to better serve customers through more integration of digital and mobile.

Nordstrom’s full-line stores have taken big hits recently, with sales declines during each of the last five quarters at stores open at least a year.

Its off-price Nordstrom Rack stores have fared better, while, and flash sale site HauteLook logged large sales increases.

“Our business was founded and built over the years through our full-line stores, and today they still represent the largest portion of our sales volume,” Erik Nordstrom, co-president, said in a news release. “However, the way customers are choosing to shop in a more digitally connected world continues to change, and we know we need to find ways for our stores to evolve with them. This is a challenge but we also see a tremendous opportunity to leverage our stores in ways that will allow us to serve customers into the future better than anyone else.”

The company has previously outlined some ideas it’s exploring as it seeks to better tie together its in-store and online experiences. It’s testing an app that allows sales associates to browse the online assortment, then send the item and outfit recommendations to customers to purchase, for example. It’s also in the early stages of exploring ways customers might be able to browse for products in the store and do the checkout on their own, perhaps by using visual search and bar code scanning.

The new position is not related to the recent departure of Kumar Srinivasan, Nordstrom’s chief technology officer who had been on the job only 10 months, the company said.

Taking over Thomas’ position as president of Nordstrom Rack is Karen McKibbin, who most recently served as president of Nordstrom Canada and led the company’s expansion into that country.