Heaton spoke to MIS Asia earlier this year about how he and the Walmart organisation as a whole use social media not just to seek out good people, but also to build employee and customer relationships. Below is the expurgated transcript of that interview.
Talk about your expansion plans in Asia and how your HR strategy, which relies on LinkedIn resources to some point, supports and drives these plans of yours.
Walmart is in a number of operations across Asia. We have a very large retail business presence in Asia. In China, we have 354 stores; in Japan, we've got around 400 stores; and in India, we're in a joint venture where we've got about 12 wholesale cash and carry businesses running at the moment. In total, I think, the region generates about US$20 billion in sales or so at the moment.
We have a global sourcing operation which covers a lot of the manufacturing hubs across Asia-China, India, Pakistan, Indonesia, Bangladesh and Dubai. We have teams going out to factories in all these places looking at all of the different products that end up in Walmart stores across the world.
We also have an e-commerce business in Shanghai. And we have some IT people who work on different things for us in India.