One in four workers are planning to quit their job in the next year in a "backlash" against ongoing pay and recruitment freezes, according to a new study today.
A survey of over 4,000 adults by market research company GfK NOP showed that more than one in eight planned to leave as soon as possible, with a further one in 10 hoping to find new work within 12 months.
Workers in the agriculture, transport and communication, energy and water sectors were most likely to be actively looking for a new job with another firm.
The findings showed that employees had stopped "battening down the hatches" and could leave organisations vulnerable to the loss of highly skilled key workers at a critical time for economic recovery, said the report.
The research also discovered that many organisations were still going through re-organisation and continued to restrict training programmes in order to save costs.
Sukhi Ghataore, employee engagement specialist at GfK NOP, said: "High attrition rates can be disastrous for any business, contributing to disengaged staff as well as higher operating and recruitment costs.
"Improving retention is vital for stability and growth and ignoring these warning signs could hit the bottom line in the long run."
A third of those surveyed said staff morale was now worse than a year ago.