Derby are expected to confirm the news via their retained and released list at the end of this week, and Ward is a surprise name tipped to be permitted to leave too despite having a contract into next season.
A club who would do well to take a look at signing him are Leeds United, who are shy of players in his position.
Ward can play on both the left or right wing, scoring three goals from starts in each position this season for the Rams. He has six goals in 21 starts, and four substitute appearances.
Five of Ward's six goals came before September was even finished, but he was only able to add one more over the remainder of the campaign.
The 28-year-old has the experience sought after by current head coach at Leeds, Neil Redfearn, and would be a quality addition if available on a free transfer or a cut-price fee.
Ward is a Northern Ireland international with 12 caps, and has previously played for Chesterfield and Sheffield United.
Alternatives for Leeds would include Millwall's Martyn Woolford or Rotherham's Ben Pringle, both out of contract this summer, but Ward offers a better eye for goal than either of them, netting one more this season than the pair did combined, and could be a more intriguing signing.