New research from Accenture suggests that young people in China and India are more likely to try new technology than their Western counterparts.
The consulting firm conducted a global survey into the technology habits of 5,000 people aged between 14 and 27, and found that young people in Europe are laggards when it comes to adopting new technology, principally because they lack patience.
Young Europeans are also not as bothered about the technology offered by potential employers as young people elsewhere in the world, the survey found.
Accenture identified 14 to 27 year-olds - nicknamed 'Millennials' - in China and India as having leapfrogged all young people elsewhere in the world in their eagerness to take up the latest technology.
Companies and organisations that fail to embrace what Accenture terms " millennial behaviour" are at risk of failing to attract and retain new staff, while "also seeing their competitive edge erode from lack of innovation in information technology", according to Accenture chief technology strategist Gary Curtis.
The survey also revealed the extraordinary amount of time that young Chinese people spend on the internet. Young Chinese business users spend around 34 hours a week using web-based communication tools, compared to an average of 11 hours in the rest of the world.
However, the survey found that all young people around the world share a desire to jump the boundaries of corporate IT. They expect to use their own technology and devices, rather than those supplied by their employer, and nearly half use social networking sites at work even when it is prohibited.
Another common trait is the short amount of time younger people spend dealing with email. The survey suggests that young people spend just over four hours a week on email, compared to an average of nearly seven hours by older users.
"Non-conformists recognise that the millennial generation is rocking the foundation of information technology in the workplace," said Curtis.
"They are responding by embracing change, and contributing to an ever-expanding gap between them and their intransigent competitors."
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