Snarky Brides

Cover letter debate

Solve this debate please.

I am writing a cover letter to apply for a guidance job in my school system. There is no hiring person, just "Department of Personnel". I read on a cover letter guide if there is no specific person to name don't write a greeting at all and just go from the address to your opening paragraph.
Dad (and me before reading that) thinks that all cover letters should start with
Dear sir or madame,   or To whom it may concern,
if there is no name specified.

What say you?

Re: Cover letter debate

  • Jeremy just did a cover letter with no 'to' person listing. He put "To Whom It May Concern".  oops.

    Cew?
  • You could say, dear Hiring Manager or something or To Whom it May Concern. I don't really think it matters. You won't not get the job if you do it wrong.

     I think CVs are totally overrated anyway. They rarely get dissected the way people think they do. Hell, most people don't even read them. I think they are awesome if you are going into a different field or need to explain a long absence from work, etc. but otherwise, I'm not a huge fan.
  • I really bugs me when job postings don't list a contact person. I always use a greeting anyhow, usually To whom it may concern:.
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  • To whom it may concern it is! I hammed up mine because I'm shifting into a field I haven't worked in previously, but fits my personality/skills so perfectly it makes me want to cry.

    While I have you : I currently have no objective section on my resume. It is currently exactly 1 page long and and I can't find anywhere that I can edit to make it shorter. Is not having the objective (having sent in the CV plus an electronic application process) a killer?

  • I like "To whom it may concern", do not like "sir" or "madam".
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  • and final question ( I promise)

    H has his final interview tomorrow for a promotion. This is his last shot. Due to circumstances he has worked in 4 stores for the company. Should he brign this up as a strong point or would it be seen as being unreliable? (He's transfered appropriately each time)
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_snarky-brides_cover-letter-debate?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:17Discussion:715ed7e4-812e-4b50-8f01-cc48a0b66a04Post:fb1b2859-8806-4940-b95f-1d0218deb4cb">Re: Cover letter debate</a>:
    [QUOTE]You could say, dear Hiring Manager or something or To Whom it May Concern. I don't really think it matters. You won't not get the job if you do it wrong. <strong> I think CVs are totally overrated anyway. They rarely get dissected the way people think they do. Hell, most people don't even read them.</strong> I think they are awesome if you are going into a different field or need to explain a long absence from work, etc. but otherwise, I'm not a huge fan.
    Posted by cew515[/QUOTE]

    Thank you! I thought I was the only one who felt like that. I have never done a cover letter and I refuse to. Then again, in my field it's probably the least important thing people need when looking to hire someone.
  • Nope. Objectives aren't necessary. I rarely read them either.
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_snarky-brides_cover-letter-debate?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:17Discussion:715ed7e4-812e-4b50-8f01-cc48a0b66a04Post:825bc894-f425-419a-b40b-e9b09e960384">Re: Cover letter debate</a>:
    [QUOTE]and final question ( I promise) H has his final interview tomorrow for a promotion. This is his last shot. Due to circumstances he has worked in 4 stores for the company. Should he brign this up as a strong point or would it be seen as being unreliable? (He's transfered appropriately each time)
    Posted by katiewhompus[/QUOTE]

    Were the transfers at his request or at the request of the company? What was the reason for them?
  • Well, the first transfer was from VA to ME because he moved. Then he moved back and transfered back to VA but a different store. Then he quit for 9 months and now he's in his 3rd store. (and I made up a 4th apparently lol.)

  • I don't think it's either good or bad, really. It just they way things worked out for him. He could probably spin it in a positive way by talking about how much he learned from the experience of working at differnt stores with different managers and cultures. Is this job with the same company?
  • Yep. It was all upward movement as well (promoted from C to B, then came back in at B and is now going for A)
  • Well, the promotions are a different story. I'd definitely play that up.
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_snarky-brides_cover-letter-debate?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:17Discussion:715ed7e4-812e-4b50-8f01-cc48a0b66a04Post:fb1b2859-8806-4940-b95f-1d0218deb4cb">Re: Cover letter debate</a>:
    [QUOTE]You could say, dear Hiring Manager or something or To Whom it May Concern. I don't really think it matters. You won't not get the job if you do it wrong.  <strong>I think CVs are totally overrated anyway. They rarely get dissected the way people think they do.</strong> Hell, most people don't even read them. I think they are awesome if you are going into a different field or need to explain a long absence from work, etc. but otherwise, I'm not a huge fan.
    Posted by cew515[/QUOTE]

    <div>We are hiring right now and have rejected a TON (like 75%) of the applicants based on the cover letter alone. And these were people who, based on their resumes, should have been great candidates.  Frankly, I thought the same way before, but I was surprised how bad some of them were.  </div><div>
    </div><div>Then again, we are hiring for a position that requires strong writing skills, so we are putting a lot of weight on the cover letter. But really- I just shake my head at the people who don't even bother to copy and paste the correct name of the organization in the letter.  <div>
    </div><div>
    </div></div>
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  • edited November 2010
    And that's why I say just skip them all together.
  • Interesting. I guess we see it as weeding out the people who can't be bothered to complete a simple task or can't do it competently.  

    We have been getting a lot of applicants from recruiting agencies- their resumes are just a little too perfect and don't match at all with the cover letter- leading us to suspect that someone else is writing the resume or altering it to make it more appealing.  How can you write a pristine resume but then submit a barely coherent cover letter? 

    I guess what I'm saying is that people are a lot dumber than I thought they would be.  So a basic cover letter with no spelling or grammar errors stands out. Which is sad. 

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  • What about just saying

    Dear personnel,

    No? God I hate this part of new job trying to getting.
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_snarky-brides_cover-letter-debate?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:17Discussion:715ed7e4-812e-4b50-8f01-cc48a0b66a04Post:b8da7588-4f7d-4f3a-954a-d55331348536">Re: Cover letter debate</a>:
    [QUOTE]What about just saying Dear personnel, No? God I hate this part of new job trying to getting.
    Posted by katiewhompus[/QUOTE]

    <div>This is the part of the cover letter we don't care about. :) Unless it says "Dear Sir", because we are an office full of madams. Then it kinda makes us cranky. </div><div>
    </div><div>FWIW, I vote "To Whom..." or "Dear Hiring Manager."</div>
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  • Here is an article on cover letters from The Chronicle of Higher Education.

    http://chronicle.com/article/The-Basics-of-Cover-Letter/46259/
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