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I'm trying to come up with a better wording for this sentence:

Please assign this to the person responsible for the job.

I want to say "Please assign this to the appropriate person", but that doesn't sound right.

What's the alternative to "person responsible for the job"? "The responsible person"? "the right person"? "the appropriate person"? None of these sound right to me.

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At a glance, I don't see anything wrong with Please assign this to the appropriate person. Can you give us any additional context? –  dotsamuelswan May 9 '13 at 17:45
    
Let's say someone or some people are working on something, but you don't know them, nor what their role is. So, I can't say "Please assign this to the carpenter", for example. So I'm looking for the more formal way of saying "Please assign this to whoever is working on this stuff" –  DumpHole May 9 '13 at 17:54
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In the scenario where the job is handed back to the correct person who can determine who is the right person to fix the problem, you can say "Please assign this to the appropriate person." I can't think of a better way to say it, actually. –  Kristina Lopez May 9 '13 at 18:01
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I think Please assign this to the appropriate person. is exactly what you are looking for. –  dotsamuelswan May 9 '13 at 18:02

3 Answers 3

up vote 2 down vote accepted

I don't think there is anything wrong with "Please assign this to the appropriate person." If you want to be more formal, or perhaps the appropiate person isn't actually a person, but a group of people, you could use a close alternative:

Please assign this to the appropriate party.

In this context 'party' can be taken to mean person, group of people, company, or any relevant entity.

You could also substitute "appropriate" with "responsible" if it feels or sounds better to you.

Pleaes assign this to the responsible person/party.

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How about:

Please assign this to the person in charge.

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The person in charge is one with overall responsibility, but this can be misinterpreted too easily as referring to supervisory or managerial roles. My letter carrier, Danny, is "in charge" of delivering the mail on my route. But if he doesn't show and I call the post office to inquire with the one "in charge" of my mail, I'll get his supervisor, and if I complain about it on a blog, some commenter is sure to observe that Barack Hussein Obama is "in charge" of the postal service and the one who deserves my wrath. –  choster Feb 23 at 14:37

The correct phrase in writing to someone you do not know the role of their responsibility would be "To whom this may concern,"

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This is entirely the wrong use of the phrase, both idiomatically and literally. If you begin a letter, you normally start with Dear [Mr Smith, Professor Brown, James...]. Even if you only know the addressee by function, you would still say Dear Judge, or Dear Doctor; in the last resort Dear Sir/Madam. In a few cases (a personal reference is the classic example), your message may go to any person or organization, or indeed any number of recipients; so it is addressed to whom it may concern. But that is quite different from 'the person responsible for the job'. –  TimLymington Sep 24 at 15:00

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