Gradng CIOs on Social Media Usage

Many CIOs are not only in charge of IT for their organizations but many of them have embraced social media to communicate more effectively with employees, customers, and vendors.


According to several research studies social media is poised to become a stronger force for innovation.

In one recent study conducted by the IBM Institute for Business Value, 57% of respondents use social media to enable more effective internal collaboration, (78% indicate they will use within 2 years).Another 58% of respondents monitor customer comments for new ideas, (78% indicate they will use within 2 years), while 46% of respondents monitor feedback from customers, (73% indicate they will within 2 years).


We recently reported that CIOs increasingly Consult LinkedIn Network When Making Purchasing Decisions.

The CIOs of most organizations have changed significantly as many are taking full advantage of social media to closely connect with customers and to promote their products and services. 

Some new research by LinkedIn reveals that social networks have emerged as a top purchase and evaluation tool among CIOs and IT decision makers. The majority of these tech professionals connect to IT vendors on social media sites, and a significant number say that social media plays a role in every stage of the acquisition process. With IT spending expected to reach more than $3.5 billion this year, making the correct purchasing decision is a critical success factor for growth. 


How about Federal CIOs Social Media Usage?

MeriTalk’s “sCIOal Circle Study” charts the social-media use of 31 federal CIOs. The information was aggregated from publicly available social media platforms.  MeriTalk assigned the CIOs points based on Facebook use, LinkedIn connections, tweets, followers and Follower-to-Follow ratios or F2F ratios.

The F2F ratio is the number of followers divided by the number of people followed, showing whether the tweeter is using Twitter to interact or just as a platform for issuing statements. A score of 1 would be an even number of followers and followed. The higher the number above one, the more one’s followers outnumber the followed, while numbers of less than one signify the opposite trend.


The study found that U.S. CIO Steven VanRoekel; Casey Coleman, CIO at the General Services Administration; Rick Holgate, CIO at the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives; and Linda Cureton, CIO at NASA, are the most prolific users of social media. Overall, the most active social media users are Coleman and Holgate, with eight points each. 

Coleman’s active Facebook account and more than 500 connections on LinkedIn upped her score. On

Twitter, Coleman has more than 1,673 tweets, 240 from the past six months. Coleman follows 2,959 tweeters and is followed by 4,908 -- a F2F ratio of 1.65. Holgate has a total of 1,426 tweets but in the last half-year, he has tweeted twice as much as Coleman, 480 times.

Of all the CIOs, VanRoekel has the biggest Twitter following, with more than 5,000 followers. VanRoekel follows just 251 people, “so it’s difficult to get his attention,” according to the report.
Brook Colangelo, the recently-departed White House CIO, was the second-most approachable CIO, with a F2F ratio of 0.44. An honorable mention went out to Luke McCormack, CIO at the Justice Department, who had an F2F ratio of 0.75.

On the opposite side of the grading were CIOs who had very little social-media presences. Among them were CIA CIO Al Tarasuik, Michael Kerr, CIO at the Labor Department, and Steven Taylor, CIO at the State Department.

The CIOs were found to not use all social media equally: Only seven CIOs have Facebook accounts, while 80 percent use LinkedIn. Twitter was deemed a hit and miss as few CIOs have accounts. Few of those with a Twitter presence tweeted regularly. Excluding the top three tweeters, all agency CIOs tweeted a total of 396 times in the last six months.

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Bill has been a member of the technology and publishing industries for more than 25 years and brings extensive expertise to the roles of CEO, CIO, and Executive Editor. Most recently, Bill was COO and Co-Founder of and the parent company PSN Inc. Previously, Bill held the position of CTO of both Wiseads New Media and