Ford Motor Co. said it has hired Liz Door, a sourcing executive at appliance maker Whirlpool, to be the company's chief supply chain officer as it looks to reset supplier relations amid quality woes and cost concerns.
The move comes nine months after Ford warned Wall Street about surging parts costs and put its CFO in charge of supply chain efforts on an interim basis while it searched for someone to take on the newly created role.
Door's hiring is part of a minor executive team shakeup announced Tuesday by Ford. Two executives are retiring: Kiersten Robinson, general manager of family vehicles and president of Mexico and Canada for Ford Blue, on July 1; and Jonathan Jennings, vice president of supply chain, as of Aug. 1.
Additionally, Dave Bozeman, head of Ford Blue's enthusiast vehicles and the Ford Customer Service Division, is leaving the company to become CEO of global transportation and logistics company C.H. Robinson next week. And Tim Slatter, formerly vehicle line director for buses and vans in Ford of Europe, became head of vehicle programs last week.
Door's appointment takes effect June 12. She will report to CFO John Lawler, who has been handling the supply chain officer duties since September.
"Liz brings deep, relevant domain experience — including leveraging the Internet of Things to create great value for customers — from both outside and inside the global auto industry," Lawler said in a statement. "That's an ideal combination for leading a team that's determined to restore supply chain management as a competitive advantage for Ford."
The news follows a Plante Moran study last month showing that Ford's supplier relations score dropped the most among automakers. The decline partly was attributed to confusion over Ford's electrification strategy, Plante Moran officials said.
Executives in recent months have said Ford has a roughly $8 billion cost disadvantage against its rivals and is looking to weed out inefficiencies in how it sources, designs and builds vehicles. Lawler has said Ford faces $5 billion in higher costs this year and will be "very aggressive" in reducing expenses in its manufacturing, supply chain and distribution operations.
Door has served as Whirlpool's executive vice president of global strategic sourcing since 2017. Before that, she led North America procurement at Whirpool for more than six years. Door started her career as a resident quality engineer with Prince Corp., working at a Chrysler assembly plant in St. Louis.
"Ford and our suppliers will win together by delivering fresh, high-quality products for our customers," Door said in Ford's statement. "We're going to expand the use of advanced quality planning throughout the supply portfolio."