An Overview of How SMTP Settings Work


This article contains useful information on the Personio SMTP server interface and its related settings.


The Fundamentals of SMTP

SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol) is a communication protocol that defines and provides rules for the transfer of emails. Communication using the protocol takes place between an email client and an SMTP server (outgoing mail server), or between two SMTP servers.

All email communications are processed via SMTP servers. In Personio, you have the option of storing your SMTP settings in order to send emails over your company’s own SMTP server. If you don’t store your SMTP settings, Personio will use our email provider Mailjet’s SMTP server to send emails.


SMTP Settings in Personio

When using Personio, you relocate applicant management and communication into the Personio recruiting area. The emails you send to applicants have "" as the default sender. If you would like to use your company’s own recruiting email address as the sender, the Personio SMTP server interface becomes relevant.

Detailed instructions on which settings to use in order to send emails from Personio via your company’s SMTP server can be found here.


Automatically Redirecting/Forwarding Your Recruiting Emails

To ensure that messages sent by applicants to your company’s recruiting email address automatically reach your Personio account, you should set up an automatic redirecting/forwarding to "" in your company’s mailbox. You can read more detailed about how to set this up here. Redirecting/forwarding several email addresses to "" is also an option.

The emails will automatically appear in the Personio inbox or in the profile of the already existing applicant.

The redirected/forwarded email must contain the original headers or the original sender address in order to clearly identify the applicant.

The graphic below illustrates the relationship between the SMTP settings stored in Personio and the email redirect/forward from your company’s mailbox.


The Components of the SMTP Settings

By entering your SMTP settings in Settings > Recruiting > Email > SMTP Settings, you give Personio permission to send emails via your server with your company’s recruiting email address as the sender. In the table below, you will find explanations of the Personio input fields:


Enter your email provider’s host name. The host name is a unique identifier, for example for a server over which the provider can be addressed or identified.


A port allows communication between computers and servers, as well as with the internet. Ports can be used to ensure data packets are always assigned correctly, e.g. emails being assigned to the port reserved for emails.

This is perhaps best explained using a metaphor: Computers/servers send data in small packets. The port serves as the recipient written on the packet. This allows the packet to be posted through the correct door.

Verschlüsselung In order to safely transfer your data/emails between your SMTP server and the browser, an encrypted connection is established. Personio supports the encryption protocols SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) and TLS (Transport Layer Security, an improved version of SSL).

Personio identifies itself on your email provider’s SMTP server using the username entered. The username is usually a complete email address.

It is important that the username entered here is a) the same address as in Settings > Recruiting > General > Email for applicants or b) has permission to send email via this address.

Kennwort Here, you should enter the password used to log in to the email account stored as the username.

Please note: As soon as the SMTP settings have been successfully configured in Personio and the redirect/forward from your account is active, email communication no longer takes place via our email provider Mailjet. Accordingly, if there are any delivery problems, we have no way to investigate what may be causing them.

You can find an overview of the most popular SMTP servers and related input data here.


Verifying Your Entries

Once you have logged your SMTP settings and configured the automatic redirect/forward to your company’s own mailbox, we recommend that you verify the data you have entered.

To do this, navigate to Settings > Recruiting > General. There, you will find a test button to click on:


To test your settings, Personio sends an email from ""   to the email address saved under Email for applicants. If the redirecting/forwarding has been correctly configured, the email will be sent back to ""   and will appear in the recruiting inbox. The status will change from not-verified to verified.

If the connection can not be established, you will receive an error message under Settings > Recruiting > Email with a corresponding indication of the cause. You can forward this to your internal IT department for troubleshooting. 


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