A survey suggests if businesses want to keep key staff, they should be looking to raise their salaries as well as providing other incentives to persuade people not to look for other jobs.
The survey by Hudson New Zealand found nearly six out of 10 employees are either actively or passively seeking new roles.
Hudson executive general manager Roman Rogers says his company's research shows employers face the very real risk of losing key talent if they don't act now.
He says employees have obviously returned from the Christmas break looking for new opportunities.
Mr Rogers says employees are clearly saying there are a number of areas where they want to see improvements with salary being number one, but they are also looking for promotion opportunities, increased training and flexible working options.
He says retention of high performing staff and keeping people highly engaged should be part of any organisation's strategy this year.
Mr Rogers says nearly two thirds of employers believe that their targets for the first six months of 2014 are achievable, which assumes they will keep their high performing staff.
He says a company's ability to keep its high performers is critical because it takes some time to recruit new staff and to train them to a high level.