The Co-operative has hired former Unilever and Barclays executive Rebecca Skitt as its new group human resources director.

Skitt, who joins the business on March 11, replaces Richard Bide who retired from the mutual last year.

Skitt has twenty years experience in human resources encompassing both the fast moving consumer goods sector with Unilever and in financial services with Barclays.   

She spent 16 years with Unilever rising to the position of vice-president of human resources for the global foods category

She joined Barclays in 2008 as HR director for Barclaycard before leading human resources in its global retail and business banking division in 2009.

The Co-operative Group group chief executive Peter Marks said: “I’m delighted Rebecca is joining us.

“She has a great track record in transforming organisational culture, capability and performance and I wish her every success in her new role.”