Brett Ratten during a Hawthorn pre-season game on March 12, 2017. Picture: AFL Photos

BRETT Ratten will return to Hawthorn as the club’s head of coaching performance and development.

Ratten worked under Alastair Clarkson during Hawthorn's premiership three-peat in between his stints as head coach at Carlton (2007-2012) and St Kilda (2019-2022).

He was North Melbourne's caretaker coach while Clarkson took leave earlier this year and will mentor third-year coach Sam Mitchell and his staff.

Brett Ratten and Alastair Clarkson at North Melbourne training, May 13, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

"I am really confident about the direction Hawthorn has taken in developing a young list on the way back to contending for premiership success, it is one of the main reasons why I choose to return to the Hawks," Ratten said.

Hawthorn football boss Rob McCartney hailed Ratten's experience.

"We're thrilled to bring someone of Brett’s calibre into our program. He will play a key role in mentoring and developing our coaching staff," McCartney said.

"With his experience, expertise, and immense football IQ, we believe Brett will make an immediate impact both on and off the field.

St Kilda coach Brett Ratten. Picture: AFL Photos

"On top of his obvious coaching skillset, Brett is a fantastic person with great perspective, who will no doubt have a positive influence on our culture and provide great mentorship for everyone across our program."

Ratten's arrival follows long-standing assistant coach Chris Newman departing the Hawks to return to former club Richmond.

The Tigers' forwards coach Xavier Clarke has departed for North Melbourne to work as an assistant coach under Clarkson.