Something that’s been proven to work in business, is that people will mostly buy from businesses they already know, like and trust.
Are you searching for quicker and simpler ideas to sell more products online and get people to stay longer on your site? Then help your prospects get to know your organization better.
If you run a WordPress site, a simple way to help visitors get to know you better is to display information about your key partners, your business team, or your employees using a staff list plugin.
In this step-by-step tutorial, you are going to learn how to create and add an updatable list of staff or team members to your site without coding skills.
Plugin Tutorial: How To Easily Add A Staff List Directory
In this tutorial, we will install, activate and configure a free WordPress plugin called Simple Staff List.
(Simple Staff List – WordPress Plugin)
Simple Staff List is free and lets you easily staff members (you could also use it to display faculty members, etc.).
The first step is to install and activate this plugin.
Log into the dashboard and from the admin menu, click on Plugins > Add New …
(WP Plugins Menu – Add New)
In the Plugins screen, search for “simple staff plugin”. This will bring up the Simple Staff Plugin in your search results area.
Click on Install Now …
(Plugins – Add Plugins screen)
Activate the plugin …
After your plugin has been installed and activated, a new menu will be added to your main WP menu called Staff Members …
(Staff Members menu)
The Staff Members menu is where you will configure and manage all of the settings and options for this plugin are configured and managed in this menu.
Configuring The Simple Staff List Plugin
Depending on how many people are in your business and how you want to structure your directory, you can just begin adding new employee details at this point, or create various groups (i.e. categories) to assign your individualmembers into.
Staff Members – Groups
Let’s configure your groups. From your dashboard menu, choose Staff Members > Groups …
(Staff Members Menu – Groups)
The Groups settings screen …
(Groups settings screen)
Note: Adding directory groups works in the same way as configuring WordPress categories …
(Groups work just like categories)
Create new groups by typing in the following information:
- Group Name – Type in your category name
- Slug – Enter the slug of your category. Note: make sure that all letters are in lower case and use hyphens instead of spaces.
- Parent – Use this section if you plan to set up nested categories
- Description – Enter your group description
- Click Add New Group when finished to set up the new category …
If you work with a business that employs many people, the ability to assign people to different groups can be very useful. For example, you can create groups for partners, project teams, departments, etc.
Create as many categories and nested categories 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 items, hover your mouse over a category title and select the Edit link …
The item will display in the Edit Group screen. Select a new group category from the Parent drop-down menu …
(Edit Group screen)
Click Update when done …
To edit your Group name or slug, hover your mouse over the group name and select the Quick Edit menu feature …
Click the Update Group button after making changes …
Add as many groups as you need to until you are done creating your directory structure …
You can add as many nested categories as you like …
Once you are done setting up your groups, the next step is to start adding staff details to your directory.
Staff Members – Add New
From your WordPress admin menu, select Staff Members > Add New …
(Staff Members – Add New)
The Add New Staff Member settings area …
(Add New Staff Member settings area)
This section provides you with an easy-to-use interface for adding and editing your staff member profile and includes the following fields:
Name Section (1)
- Name: Type your staff member’s name
- Slug: You can change the slug for each staff member if required (this section appears after saving your details).
Staff Photo Section (2)
- Photo: Add a photo in this section
Staff Member Info Section (3)
- Position: Your staff member’s role
- Email: Type in the person’s email address
- Phone Number: Your staff member’s phone number
- Facebook URL: Add your company’s Facebook URL (note: use the full URL, e.g. http://www.facebook.com/username)
- Twitter URL: Type your employee’s Twitter username (note: only enter the username, not the full twitter URL)
Staff Member Bio Section (4)
- Staff Member Bio: Add a profile description for your employees here. This uses the WordPress Text Editor, so you can format content into this section.
Groups Section (5)
- Groups: You can assign the individual to a group (see the previous section of this tutorial to learn how to set up your groups).
If you click on the Screen Options tab …
You will see options to enable additional page settings …
(Enable additional fields in screen options tab)
Now that you know what each section does, enter your employee’s details …
(Add New Staff Member fields)
Once you are done inputting your staff member’s details, assign the new entry to a directory group in the Groups section located in your sidebar …
Note: If you did not set up categories before starting to add staff member details, you can add a new group in this screen by selecting Groups > + Add New Group …
(Add a new group inside your Groups box)
A field for creating your new group name will display, with a dropdown menu that lets you assign your new entry to a parent group. Enter your new directory category and click on Add New Group …
A new category will be created. Remember to tick the checkbox to assign an entry to the group …
(New group added)
Note: Groups cannot be edited when new employee details are being added or modified. To edit an item, go to the Groups section of the plugin’s settings (see “Groups” section above for details).
After filling in your staff member’s details, click the Publish button to add them to your staff directory …
Click View Post …
You can edit your employee’s profile by clicking the Edit Staff Member link in the admin toolbar …
(Edit Staff Member link – WP admin toolbar)
We have created a detailed tutorial on using the admin toolbar here:
Note: If ’not found’ page errors shows up like the one shown in the screenshot below, check that your permalinks have been set up correctly …
(Not found error – Check your permalinks)
To learn more about setting up permalinks in WordPress, see this tutorial:
Repeat the above process to continue adding more entries to your employee or faculty directory.
Staff Members – All Staff Members
After entering staff details to your directory, you can view and edit their details by choosing Staff Members > All Staff Members on the main admin menu …
(Staff Members – All Staff Members)
This brings up a table displaying all your directory items and their details …
(Staff Members details table)
If you need to edit individual details, hover over their name, and a submenu will appear.
Click on Edit if you want to modify the Staff Bio, or Quick Edit to change details such as their name, slug, group, and publish status. You can also delete a listing from your employee directory by clicking on Trash, or view the entry on your site by clicking View …
(Edit Staff Members info)
Depending on what you are using the plugin for, your table can get quite long.
Use the Search Staff Members search box to find items if required …
The plugin also lets you specify which fields can display in this screen. 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 finished to save your preferences …
Staff Members – Order
Simple Staff List also features a drag-and-drop interface that allows you to set the order that listings appear on your directory page.
Choose Staff Members > Order on your menu …
(Staff Members – Order)
To reorder your listings, click and drag the entry to its new location …
(Rearrange items using drag and drop)
Your directory will automatically be reorganized …
(Reordered list entries)
Once you have added members’ listing details to the directory, the next step is to display the directory on your site.
Staff Members – Order
The Simple Staff List plugin also features a drag-and-drop interface allowing you to specify the order that your staff profiles appear on your directory page.
Click Staff Members > Order on your menu …
(Staff Members – Order)
To reorder your items, click and drag the entry to the new location …
(Reorder listings using drag and drop)
Your staff list will be automatically rearranged …
(Reordered list items)
Once you are done adding member details to the directory, the next step is to add the directory to your site users.
Simple Staff List – Additional Notes
Simple Staff List also lets you customize the style and layout of your employee directory listings using template tags and CSS (Cascading Style Sheets).
To customize the style and layout of your directory, select Staff Members > Templates from your menu …
(Staff Members – Templates)
This opens the Templates screen …
(Customize your directory template)
To customize your directory, reorganize any of the allowable template tags inside the [staff_loop] [/staff_loop] code.
For example, below is the default template used for displaying directory listings …
(Default Plugin Staff Loop Template)
The above code displays the listing shown below …
(Default Plugin Template Listing)
Notice that no Facebook or Twitter URLs are showing in the above listing. To make these fields appear in your directory, you will need to add the [staff-facebook] and [staff-twitter] tags to the template loop, as shown in the screenshot below …
(Template tags can be added to the Staff Loop Template to customize your directory page)
Here is what your directory should now look like …
(Directory with social media URLs added)
Note: If you want to customize how your directory looks but don’t want to mess around with template tags or are unsure of what to do, please contact us for help.
As well as 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, select Staff Members >Usage …
(Staff Members – Usage)
This opens the Usage page …
(Usage Shortcode screen)
This screen displays all different shortcode variations that the Simple Staff List plugin lets you use.
For example, a useful variation you can add to display a list of employees or faculty members belonging only to a specific group is the shortcode [simple-staff-list group=”group name”], (e.g.:[simple-staff-list group=”senior staff”])
You can also display listings in ascending or descending order by inserting the shortcode [simple-staff-list order=”ASC”] (ascending).
Select Staff Members >Options in your main admin menu …
(Staff Members – Options)
This brings up the Options screen …
(Simple Staff List – customizable fields)
Here you can edit labels like Staff Members URL Slug and Staff Member titles
Finally, you can also export your staff members info by going to your menu and choosing Tools > Export …
(Export Staff Members plugin information)
If you need plugin support, go to the plugin site and request help from the plugin author.
Additional WordPress Plugins For Creating Simple Staff Directories
Simple Staff List is not the only WordPress staff directory plugin you can use. Here are some other free WordPress plugins you can use to create an employee directory on your site:
(Modern Team Staff Directory – WordPress Staff Directory Plugin)
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)
Learn more here:
Staff Directory lets you easily create a directory of faculty/team/staff members. The plugin supports staff categories and can be used for churches, schools, etc.
You can also create custom fields …
(Custom Details Fields Screen. Screenshot source: plugin website)
Go here to learn more about this plugin:
(Faculty And Staff Directory)
The Faculty And Staff Directory 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 profiles in a widget area.
Go here to learn more about the plugin:
(Company Directory – WP Plugin)
This plugin lets you add your employees to your site. Different layouts are included, including list and table views, plus as fields like title, email, phone number, photo and bio, allowing you to present your company and capabilities.
Visitors will be able to click through from your list, grid, and table views to learn more about each staff member in a customizable single view …
(Display your staff and faculty members in an easy-to-view format. Screenshot sourced from Company Directory website)
This plugin also uses simple shortcodes.
Learn more about the plugin here:
(Employee Spotlight – WP Staff Directory Plugin)
Employee Spotlight displays team members, partners or just an individual member of your team in a four-column circle grid page. This page can be easily created with a setup assistant upon plugin activation.
Employee Spotlight comes with two sidebar widgets which display featured and recent employees selected in the editor, plus two responsive views which adjust to the device screen size.
Detailed information about each faculty member can be displayed in their own page, as well as in summary …
(Responsive layout with circle grid. Screenshot sourced from Employee Spotlight plugin website)
Staffer uses custom post types for staff/employee management and supports the display of staff members via a shortcode, allowing you to easily create and manage a staff directory on your site …
(Staffer archive page. Screenshot source: Staffer plugin website)
Staffer works immediately with almost all WordPress themes, and also allows for custom template use and custom content wrappers.
Learn more about this plugin 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 Plugin
- Staff Directory WordPress Plugin
- Staff Plugin WordPress
Congratulations! Now you know how to add a simple employee directory to your WordPress site, so your web visitors can get to know you and the people in your organization better.
Images of persons used to display fictitious staff members were sourced under creative commons license from pixabay.com
"This is an awesome training series. I have a pretty good understanding of WordPress already, but this is helping me to move somewhere from intermediate to advanced user!" - Kim Lednum