Home >New UKWA CEO to attract and nurture talent

New UKWA CEO to attract and nurture talent

13 July 2021

CLARE BOTTLE has been appointed as the new chief executive officer of the UK Warehousing Association (UKWA). Clare joins UKWA from Coca-Cola Europacific Partners, where she was associate director of warehousing, responsible for managing 3PL contracts and running in-house warehousing operations across the UK.

Her career includes delivery of successful logistics projects as an interim manager for clients such as Kuehne+Nagel, M&S, Yodel and Bunzl. Later, she became national logistics manager for Lafarge Tarmac before joining Coca-Cola in 2015.

Clare said: “I am passionate about warehousing and logistics and am delighted to have the opportunity to make a difference in the industry in my new role. I believe it is vital for the future to attract and nurture best talent to our industry; careers are an essential engine of social mobility and I am committed to making the logistics profession increasingly equitable and inclusive. Above all, it is my ambition as CEO of UKWA to secure for warehousing and logistics operations the place they deserve at the heart of the UK economy.”

Clare added that a great place for companies to start would be to examine the culture of the business and be ready to act upon findings.

“We see examples in the wider world - such as the NFL recently fining the Washington Football Team $10 million for a toxic, sexist workplace culture - that illustrate the importance of this. We often hear about diversity and inclusion. You have to look at inclusion first, tackling diversity without already having an inclusive culture will lead to a revolving door.

“For small organisations, leaders can ask people directly about what they would like to see, for larger organisations use surveys to find out. Logisticians tend to have a bias towards action, so don’t just do the survey, be open to acting on the findings. Once you have a more inclusive culture, then look at diversity.”

This is important in both attracting and retaining the talent that can make a difference to your business.

It is an issue that is close to Clare’s heart. She was the first single parent to receive graduate training in the organisation she worked for in the 1990s. In 1995, she took a role managing a warehouse process in Widnes and was immediately hooked, switching to supply chain from a secretarial background. 

She also won a case at an employment tribunal early in her career, when a male colleague doing the same role, with the same experience was paid more. She has been involved with Women in Logistics from its establishment in the mid-2000s.

Chair of the UKWA management board Neil Bowker warmly welcomed Clare’s appointment: “The UKWA board is delighted to confirm Clare Bottle as our new CEO. Clare brings tremendous industry experience to the role, having worked in the logistics arena for over 25 years. She enjoys a reputation for driving change and I have no doubt that Clare will continue to fight for our industry as the head of its leading trade association.”

Peter Ward, who has led UKWA for the last six years, will retire at the end of the month after a handover period.