How should you address your cover letter?

If you were to consult any career advice blog about whether or not you should use “To Whom It May Concern” on a cover letter, you would soon learn that most experts believe this five letter phrase to be a major job application disaster.

For years, career blogs have asserted that you must address your cover letter by the hiring manager’s name if you want any chance of getting an interview — that “To Whom It May Concern” just doesn’t cut it.

How should you address your cover letter?

But regardless of what the experts say, countless job seekers address their cover letters this way and still land jobs. So how much truth is there to the expert consensus? Does opening your cover letter with “To Whom It May Concern” really impact your job prospects? 

To get to the bottom of this question, Resume Companion conducted a survey of over 1,000 hiring managers from all over the United States, asking them if seeing “To Whom It May Concern” on a candidate’s cover letter would impact their hiring decision.

The results were decisive: more than 83% of hiring managers polled stated that seeing a candidate introduce their cover letter with “To Whom It May Concern” would have little or no impact on their hiring decision regarding that candidate.

This contradicts what career experts have been claiming for years about the negative impact of using “To Whom it May Concern” on your cover letter.

Even more fascinating, however, were how the results varied according to age, gender, and location. To dive into the statistics and learn more about what hiring managers think of potential candidates who use “To Whom It May Concern,” check out this To Whom It May Concern survey and get a full picture.

To Whom It Man Concern Survey
Zoomers New Boomers
Men Like to Hear Their Names
Region Variation

This infographic was created by Resume Companion.