Something that’s been proven to work in business, is that people will buy from people they already know, like and trust.
If you are looking for cost-effective ways to grow your business online, then make it easier for your prospects to get to know, like and trust you and your business better.
Adding a directory of employees or team members to your website can help increase your credibility online and get more prospects contacting you.
In this tutorial, we are going to show you how to add an updatable list of employees or team members to your website without using code.
Adding An Employee Directory: Tutorial
In this tutorial, you will learn how to install, activate and configure a free plugin called Simple Staff List.
(Simple Staff List Plugin For WordPress)
Simple Staff List is a free plugin that lets you easily staff members.
First, let’s install and activate the Simple Staff List plugin.
Log into the admin and navigate to Plugins > Add New …
(Plugins Menu – Add New)
In the Plugins panel, search for “simple staff plugin”. This brings up the Simple Staff Plugin in your search results area.
Click on the Install Now button …
(WordPress Plugins – Add Plugins screen)
Click on Activate Plugin …
After installing and activating your plugin, a new menu entry will have been added to the main WP menu bar called Staff Members …
The Staff Members menu is where you will manage and configure all of the settings and options for this plugin are configured and managed in this menu.
Depending on how many people are in your organization and how you want to structure your employee directory, you could just start adding new staff member details at this at this stage, or create different groups (i.e. categories) that you will assign to individual employees.
Staff Members – Groups
Let’s start by configuring your directory groups. From your dashboard menu, choose Staff Members > Groups …
(Staff Members Menu – Groups)
This opens up the Groups settings area …
Note: Configuring directory groups is very similar to creating categories in WordPress …
(Groups work like categories)
Create new groups by typing in the following information:
- Group Name – Enter your category name here
- Slug – Type in the slug of your group category name. Note: make sure that all letters are in lower case and use hyphens instead of spaces.
- Parent – Use this drop-down menu if you plan to set up nested categories
- Description – Enter your group description here
- Click Add New Group when finished to create a new directory group …
If you are a medium to large organization, the ability to assign people to different categories can be very useful. For example, you can create a category for partners, developers, departments, etc.
Create as many groups and nested groups as you need by adding new Groups and then using the Parent drop-down menu to organize these into a directory hierarchy …
Remember to click on the Add New Group button after entering new items …
To change or reassign Groups for individual entries, hover over a category title and click on the Edit link …
The selected group will display in the Edit Group page. Select a new parent group from the Parent dropdown menu …
(Edit Group screen)
Click Update when done …
To change your Group name or slug, hover over the group name and select the Quick Edit menu feature …
Click the Update Group button to save your changes …
Continue adding group names in this section until you are done creating your directory structure …
You can add as many nested groups as you like …
Once you have finished setting up your groups, you can begin to add names to your directory.
Staff Members – Add New
From your WP admin menu, click on Staff Members > Add New …
(Staff Members – Add New)
This takes you to the Add New Staff Member area …
(Add New Staff Member settings area)
This section provides an easy-to-use interface for adding your staff member profile and includes the following fields:
Name Section (1)
- Name: The employee’s name
- Slug: Edit your staff members’ permalink URL (this section appears after your first save).
Staff Photo Section (2)
- Photo: Add a photo here
Staff Member Info Section (3)
- Position: Add the person’s position
- Email: The staff member’s email address
- Phone Number: The staff member’s phone number
- Facebook URL: Enter the person’s Facebook address here (note: use the full URL, e.g. http://www.facebook.com/username)
- Twitter URL: Type the employee’s Twitter username (note: only enter the username, not the full twitter URL)
Staff Member Bio Section (4)
- Staff Member Bio: Type in a profile description for your staff or team member here. This uses the WordPress Text Editor, so you can add formatting to the content entered into this section.
Groups Section (5)
- Groups: You can assign a staff or faculty member to a specific group (see above to learn how to set up groups).
Click on the Screen Options tab at the top of your screen …
(Screen options tab)
You can enable additional page settings …
(Enable additional fields in screen options)
Now that you know what each section does, enter each of your employee’s details …
(Staff directory settings)
Once you have entered each staff member’s details, assign your new entry to a directory group in the Groups feature in the sidebar …
Note: If you have not set up your directory groups before adding staff member details, you can add a new group in this screen by clicking on Groups > + Add New Group …
(Add a new group inside your Groups box)
A field for entering your group name will display, with a dropdown menu to assign your new entry to a parent group. Type in the name of your new group and click on the Add New Group button …
Your new directory category will be created. Remember to tick the check box to assign an individual to the group …
(New group added via Groups feature)
Note: Groups cannot be edited when adding or editing an employee’s details. To edit a group entry, go to the Groups section of the plugin’s settings (see “Groups” section of the tutorial above for details).
After entering your employee’s details, click the Publish button to add them to the employee directory …
Click View Post …
To update your staff member’s profile, click on the Edit Staff Member link in the WP admin toolbar …
(Edit Staff Member link – admin toolbar)
We have written a detailed tutorial on using the dashboard admin toolbar here:
Note: If errors like the one shown in the example below shows up, check that your site’s permalinks have been set up correctly …
(Check your permalinks if you get ’not found’ page errors)
To learn more about setting up permalinks in WordPress, refer to this step-by-step tutorial:
Keep adding new entries to your employee or team directory until done.
Staff Members – All Staff Members
After entering employees to your directory, you can view and edit details by selecting Staff Members > All Staff Members in the menu …
(Staff Members – All Staff Members)
This brings up a table displaying all the staff profiles and details you have added related to each entry …
(Staff Members list)
If you need to make changes to an individual’s details, just hover your mouse over their listing, and a submenu will appear.
Click on Edit if you need to modify their Staff Bio, or Quick Edit to edit details like name, slug, group, and publish status. You can also delete a member from your employee directory by clicking on Trash, or view the entry on your site by clicking on View …
(Editing Staff Members profile info)
Depending on what you are using the plugin for, your table can become unwieldy.
Use the Search Staff Members search field to find listing items …
You can specify which fields to display in this section. To show or hide fields on your screen, click on Screen Options …
(Screen Options tab)
Placing a tick in the item’s checkbox displays the field and unchecking a box hides the field. You can also choose how many staff members are shown per page. Click Apply when done to save your preferences …
Staff Members – Order
Simple Staff List also features a drag-and-drop interface that lets you specify the order that entries display on your directory page.
Select Staff Members > Order on the main admin menu …
(Staff Members – Order)
To reorder your entries, click and drag the entry to the desired location …
(Reorder items using drag and drop)
Your directory will be automatically rearranged …
After adding all staff details to the directory, the next step is to make the directory show on your site.
Staff Members – Order
Simple Staff List also features a drag-and-drop interface allowing you to set the order in which entries appear on your directory page.
Select Staff Members > Order in the main menu …
(Staff Members – Order)
To reorder your listings, click and drag the item to a new location …
(Reorder staff listings using drag and drop)
Your list will be automatically reordered …
Once you are done adding employees’ listing details to the directory, the next step is to add your directory to your site users.
Simple Staff List – Additional Notes
Simple Staff List lets you create the layout and style of your employee directory items using template tags and CSS (Cascading Style Sheets).
To customize the style and layout of your directory, select Staff Members > Templates from the menu …
(Staff Members Menu – Templates)
This opens the Templates page …
(Customize your directory template)
To customize your directory, insert any of the allowed template tags inside the [staff_loop] [/staff_loop] code.
For example, below is the default template used for displaying directory listings …
The above code displays the listing shown below …
(Default Simple Staff List Staff Loop Template Listing)
Notice that no Facebook or Twitter URLs are showing in the above example. To make these fields display in the directory, you will need to add the [staff-facebook] and [staff-twitter] tags to the template loop, as shown in the example below …
(Template tags added to Staff Loop Template)
Here is what your listings page will now look like …
(Directory with social media URLs added)
Note: If you want to customize how your staff directory looks but don’t want to mess around with editing code or are unsure of what to do, please contact us for assistance.
In addition to allowing you to customize your listing templates, the Simple Staff List plugin lets you display your staff profiles differently using modified shortcodes.
In your menu, choose Staff Members >Usage …
(Staff Members Menu – Usage)
This brings up the Usage page …
(Usage Shortcode section)
This screen lists all different shortcode variations that the Simple Staff List plugin lets you use.
For example, a useful shortcode variation you can add to your page to display a list of staff members belonging only to a specific group is the shortcode [simple-staff-list group=”group name”], (e.g.:[simple-staff-list group=”sales managers”])
Or, you can make your listings display in ascending or descending order by using the shortcode [simple-staff-list order=”DESC”] (descending).
Select Staff Members >Options in your main menu …
(Staff Members – Options)
This opens the Options screen …
This section lets you modify labels like Staff Members URL Slug and Staff Member title
You can also export your staff members details from the Tools > Export page …
(Export Staff Members plugin information)
If you need plugin help or support, go to the plugin faq page and request help from the plugin author.
Other WordPress Plugins For Creating Staff Directories
Simple Staff List is not the only adding a directory of your employees. For example, here are other free plugins you can look at:
(Modern Team Staff Directory – Plugin For WordPress)
This plugin helps you collect your team information and showcase it anywhere on your site in beautiful grids, columns and tables. This premium plugin features over a dozen presets and provides editors that make it easy to edit and update your directory.
(Modern Team Staff Directory – Responsive Templates)
Go here to learn more about the plugin:
With the Staff Directory plugin, you can easily create a directory of team/faculty/staff members. The plugin supports staff categories and can be used for churches, teams, etc.
This plugin also lets you create custom fields …
(Custom Details Fields Screen. Screenshot source: plugin website)
(Faculty And Staff Directory – Plugin For WordPress)
This plugin provides a simple and flexible faculty and staff directory for a small college or university.
The plugin also installs a widget that allows you to feature a profile in a widget area.
To learn more about the plugin go here:
(Company Directory – Plugin For WordPress)
With Company Directory, you can easily add your employees to your website. Different layouts are included, including list and single views, as well as fields like job title, email, phone number, pic and staff bio, allowing visitors to get to know your company and capabilities.
Visitors can click through from your list, grid, and table views to read more about each employee in a customizable single view …
(Display your staff and faculty members in an easy-to-view format. Screenshot sourced from plugin website)
This plugin uses a simple shortcode system.
Go here to learn more about this plugin:
Employee Spotlight displays team members, partners or just one individual member of your team in a 4-column circle grid page. This page can be easily created with a setup assistant upon plugin activation.
With the Employee Spotlight plugin, you get two sidebar widgets that let you display featured and recent employees selected in the editor, and two responsive views which adjust to the device screen size.
Detailed information about each employee can be displayed in their own page, as well as in summary …
(Responsive layout with employee circle grid. Screenshot sourced from Employee Spotlight website)
Go here to learn more:
(Staffer – WP Plugin)
Staffer uses custom post types for staff management and supports the display of staff members via a shortcode, allowing you to easily create and manage an onsite employee directory …
(Staffer archive page. Screenshot source: plugin website)
Staffer works immediately with many popular WordPress themes, and also allows for custom template use and custom content wrappers.
For more details, visit the plugin site here:
If the above plugins aren’t what you’re looking for, just go online or visit the WordPress plugin directory and search for:
- Add Staff Directory To WordPress
- WordPress Staff Directory Plugin
- WordPress Plugin Staff Directory
- Employee Directory WordPress
Hopefully, now you know how to add an updatable simple faculty directory to in WordPress using free WP plugins.
Images of models used in this tutorial to portray sample staff members were sourced under creative commons license from pixabay.com
"I have used the tutorials to teach all of my clients and it has probably never been so easy for everyone to learn WordPress ... Now I don't need to buy all these very expensive video courses that often don't deliver what they promise." - Stefan Wendt, Internet Marketing Success Group