The minute there is a break in the continuity of your service, customers will alert the world via social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter. Here are 13 leading perspectives on the impact social media is having and how transformative CIOs are adapting to social media, social networking and colloaboration tools.

"As you can appreciate, social is critically important to De Beers from a reputational, sustainability, customer and marketing point of view. Here we monitor and actively engage in social communities. Internally, we have a social platform but are looking to renovate this in 2015."
Craig Charlton, De Beers CIO

"The speed and ubiquity of social media, especially when combined with mobility, can present challenges for large infrastructure providers - it is, for example, a lot simpler and faster for a customer to Tweet a photograph of a damaged piece of our network than it is for us to allocate the right resources to fixing the issue, physically get engineers to the scene and manually repair any damage. However, this very speed and ubiquity also presents a huge opportunity - if we can combine social media data with network telemetry, for example, using big data analytics techniques, we have the potential to be aware of, and fix, issues a lot faster, whilst using the same social media channels to communicate in real-time with our customers - this is already happening through things like BT Care."
Clive Selley, BT CIO

"Social is playing an increasing role to supplement and enrich the daily experience of our engineering and managemet community, through use of tools like Chatter and Yammer."
Rod Carr, Centrica CIO

Sheffield Teaching Hospital Head of ICT Tracey Scotter

"Social networking is supporting patients to be more empowered. They are able to set up or join communities to share information and manage their conditions better. We have also had instances of where patients have tweeted about a dreadful experience in the hospital while it has been happening and we have been able to take immediate action to turn the situation around."
Tracey Scotter, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals Director of Informatics

"I believe that social media can enable a business to transform its relationship with customers and to drive changes to a brand which would have been inconceivable only a few years ago. This year we will also be deploying an internal social media solution to replace the traditional corporate intranet solution. I expect the colleague impact to be dramatic as we provide a solution which supports collaborative, flexible working across functions. I have high hopes that this will be a rich source of feedback and ideas which can unlock opportunities and drive the business forward."
Andy Haywood, N Brown CIO

"We have millions of Facebook and Twitter interactions and countless blogs around the country (on diverse subjects such as a ranger describing coastal path restoration). The ability to deliver content to a visitor during a visit on property is transformational - but thwarted often by weak rural networks - especially on our coast or country destinations. So we're making clever use of a whole combination of broadband/satellite/microwave/WiFi bridging/geo-fencing to overcome this."
Sarah Flannigan, National Trust CIO

"As a brand we have a significant mobile and social strategy in place that supports and underpins key routes to market and public positioning of the brand."
Lee Bingham, Paul Smith Head of IT

"Social media channels are now integral to the way we work with full-time staff focusing on these areas. Our primary focus is around Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. We have been using these tools for a number of years with the principles of social media and networking also integrated into our core learning platforms. They are used proactively to support student acquisition, build academic reputation and engage with past, present and future students."
David Matthewman, Open University CIO

"Social has become an important channel for engagement and feedback but still has huge potential for us in supporting the natural communities that we build in our clubs with our member bases."
Andy Caddy, Virgin Active CIO

RSA Group CIO Darren Price

"It is significantly impacting customer experience and companies need to harness it to make things better for customers. RSA aims to lead the industry in the use of social tools to deliver better customer service, new and better products, and better ways of connecting with our customers and partners. To lead the industry in social we are focusing on more than just our brand reach and balancing that against three other key areas: Cost reduction, Customer experience and Sales. As an example, we’re already getting positive feedback from customers of our MORE TH>N digital servicing team, who are using Twitter and Facebook  to respond proactively to customers’ problems faster than could be done by phone.  We’re looking at ways we can expand this on other channels, to other customer groups and for other RSA brands globally."
Darren Price, RSA CIO

"We are putting the customer at the forefront of our thinking to ensure we are a customer-centric rather than property-centric organisation. Mobile and social networking is key trends that we are actively responding to. The transformation programme has mobile and social networking at its' centre.

"The Group has adopted a digital principle to be digital by design and to deliver digital services first.
Through a structured programme, over the next year, we will be looking at all the ways we can use digital technology to help us in the way we work and in the way we provide our customers with services."
Kevin Connell, Southern Housing CIO

"Social-enabled digital customer experience is fundamental to our business. Nissan is traditionally a challenger automotive brand is leading the field in digital, deeply engaging consumers in our brand delivering an innovative and exciting customer experience."
Stephen Kneebone, Nissan Europe CIO

"We have a very large social network across many channels as engaging socially with customers is now vitally important to any eCommerce retailer like Green Man Gaming, where relationships with customers are built solely online.

"Our focus is on creating a good customer experience which we manage by creating a loyal community; knowing how to communicate with our customers at those points where they live their lives online - talking in their language, and the language of whichever medium they choose to use, then giving them reasons to keep engaging with us, is integral to our success and is why our current transformation project to improve and enhance this experience, especially on mobile, is so critical.

"Our Playfire service is where we heavily engage with our audience, which we actively add strength to through Twitter, Facebook, and newsletters. Playfire helps connect people together, regardless of the tastes or their preference in what type of media they like to consume. Not only tracking in-game activity, our community compare, discuss, and share games, compile want lists, vote and take part in Game Night sessions, and earn rewards (GMG Credit which can be used on anything on the Green Man Gaming store) through playing games, which is a unique proposition within this industry. We also always encourage the community to constantly help us improve the service, based on their needs and ideas - we’ve even had members of the community who have made such incredible suggestions, we’ve employed them! The research and the power of the data we collect (including opinion about product launches, and sentiment towards the business) from our social network helps to drive our digital strategies and directly impacts operations which is vital to the business."
Chily Fachler, Green Man Gaming CIO