Many business experts have successfully proven that people tend to buy from those they know, like and trust.
Are you looking for inexpensive ways to sell more products online? Then help prospects get to know, like and trust you, your team and your business better.
If your site is built with WordPress, one way to easily help people get to know you better is to use a WordPress directory plugin that lets you add a directory listing with information about your partners, your faculty, or your staff.
In this tutorial, we explain how to easily add an easy-to-maintain list of employees in your website using free plugins.
Tutorial: How To Easily Add A Staff Directory
In this tutorial, we will install, activate and configure a plugin called Simple Staff List.
(Simple Staff List)
Simple Staff List lets you staff members.
First, let’s install and activate the plugin.
Log into your admin and in your admin menu, select Plugins > Add New …
(WordPress Plugins Menu – Add New)
In the Plugins area, search for “simple staff plugin”. This brings up the Simple Staff Plugin in your plugin search results.
Click on the Install Now button …
(WordPress Plugins – plugin search results)
Activate the plugin …
After your plugin has been installed and activated, you will notice that new menu entry will appear in the main WP admin menu called Staff Members …
(Staff Members menu)
All of the settings for the Simple Staff List plugin are configured and managed in this menu.
Depending on how many people are in your business and how you want to structure your employee directory, you can begin adding new employee details at this at this stage, or create various groups (i.e. categories) to assign your individualemployees into.
Staff Members – Groups
Let’s set up your directory groups. In your WordPress dashboard menu, select Staff Members > Groups …
(Staff Members – Groups)
This brings up the Groups section …
Note: Setting up directory groups works just like categories in WordPress …
(Groups work like WordPress categories)
Create new groups by typing in the following information:
- Group Name – Enter your group category name here
- Slug – Enter 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 section to set up a directory hierarchy
- Description – Type in the category description (optional)
- Click the Add New Group button when done to create your new directory group …
If you run a medium to large organization, having the ability to create categories can be very useful. For example, you can create categories for founders, developers, departments, etc.
Create as many categories and nested groups as you need by adding new Groups and then using the Parent drop-down menu to build a directory hierarchy …
Remember to click on the Add New Group button after entering each item …
To edit or reassign Groups for individual items, hover your mouse over a category title and select the Edit link …
The selected category details open in the Edit Group page. Select a new group from the Parent drop-down menu …
(Edit Group screen)
Click Update when done …
To change your Group name or slug, hover over the group name and select Quick Edit …
Click on Update Group after making changes …
Add as many categories as you need to until you have created your directory structure …
Add as many nested categories as you like …
(Add nested categories your directory)
After you are done setting up your hierarchical structure, the next step is to begin to add staff details to your directory.
Staff Members – Add New
From your admin menu, select Staff Members > Add New …
(Staff Members Menu – Add New)
The Add New Staff Member settings …
(Add New Staff Member screen)
This page provides an easy-to-use interface for adding and editing your staff member profile and includes the following fields:
Name Section (1)
- Name: Your staff member’s name
- Permalink: You can change the permalink URL for your employee if you want (this section appears after saving your details).
Staff Photo Section (2)
- Photo: Add a photo of your staff member
Staff Member Info Section (3)
- Position: Add the person’s role here
- Email: Add the staff member’s email address
- Phone Number: Type in the person’s phone number
- Facebook URL: Type in your company’s Facebook address here (note: use the full URL, e.g. http://www.facebook.com/username)
- Twitter URL: Type in the person’s Twitter username into this field (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 employee here. This uses the WordPress Text Editor, so you can use HTML into this section.
Groups Section (5)
- Groups: You can assign your staff member to a group (see the previous section to learn how to set up groups).
Click on the Screen Options tab …
(Screen options tab)
You can enable additional page settings …
(Enable additional fields in screen options tab)
Now that you know what each section does, enter each of your staff member’s details …
(Staff directory settings)
After you have entered each staff member’s details, assign your new entry to a directory group in the Groups box located in your sidebar …
Note: If you have not set up categories before adding new staff members, you can add a new group in this screen by clicking on Groups > + Add New Group …
(Groups > + Add New Group link)
A field will appear allowing you to enter a new group name, with a dropdown menu to assign your new entry to a parent group. Enter your new directory category and click on the Add New Group button …
The new group will be added. Remember to tick the check box to assign an individual to the group …
(New group added via Groups section)
Note: You cannot edit groups when adding or making changes to a staff member’s details. To edit an item, go to the Groups section of the plugin’s settings (see “Groups” section of the tutorial above for details).
After typing in your employee’s details, click the Publish button to add them to your directory …
Click View Post …
You can make changes to your member profile by clicking the Edit Staff Member link in your WordPress admin toolbar …
(Edit Staff Member link – WP admin toolbar)
To learn more about using the dashboard admin toolbar, see this tutorial:
Note: If ’page not found’ errors shows up like the one shown in the screenshot below, check that you have configured your site’s permalinks correctly …
(Not found error? Check your permalinks)
We have written a detailed tutorial about using permalinks in WordPress here:
Repeat the above process to continue adding more entries to your employee directory directory.
Staff Members – All Staff Members
After you are done adding staff members into your directory, you can view and edit their details by choosing Staff Members > All Staff Members on your main menu …
(Staff Members – All Staff Members)
This brings up a table displaying all your directory entries and details you have added related to each entry …
(Staff Members table)
If you need to edit an individual’s entry, simply hover your mouse over their listing, and a submenu will appear.
Click on Edit to edit the Staff Bio, or Quick Edit to edit details like name, slug, group, and publish status. You can also remove an entry from the staff directory by clicking on Trash, or view the entry on your site by clicking on View …
(Edit Staff Members info)
Depending on what you are using the plugin for, your table can get quite long.
You can use the Search Staff Members search feature to find listing items if required …
You can specify which fields can display in this section. To hide or hide fields on your screen, click the Screen Options tab …
(Staff Members Screen Options)
Tick or untick the checkboxes to show or hide specific fields. You can also choose how many staff members are listed per page. Click Apply when done to update your settings …
Staff Members – Order
Simple Staff List also features a drag-and-drop interface that allows you to arrange the order that entries appear on your directory page.
Choose Staff Members > Order in your dashboard menu …
(Staff Members – Order)
To reorder your entries, click and drag the entry to the desired location …
(Rearrange staff listings using drag and drop)
Your staff list will be automatically rearranged …
After adding your members’ details to the directory, the next step is to make your directory show on your site.
Staff Members – Order
Simple Staff List also features a drag-and-drop interface allowing you to specify the order in which listings show on your directory pages.
Choose Staff Members > Order on the main menu …
(Staff Members Menu – Order)
To rearrange the order of your listings, click and drag the item to a desired location …
(Rearrange staff listings using drag and drop)
Your directory will automatically be rearranged …
Once you have added member listing details to the directory, the next step is to display the directory on your site.
Simple Staff List – Additional Notes
The Simple Staff List plugin also lets you create 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 employee directory, select Staff Members > Templates from your dashboard menu …
(Staff Members – Templates)
This opens the Templates screen …
(Customize your directory template)
To customize your directory, insert any of the permitted template tags inside the [staff_loop] [/staff_loop] code.
For example, here is a screenshot of the default template used for displaying listings …
(Default Staff Loop Template)
The This code displays your listing as shown below …
(Default Plugin Template Listing)
Notice that no Facebook or Twitter URLs are showing in the above listing. To display these fields, you will need to add the [staff-facebook] and [staff-twitter] tags to the template, as shown in the example below …
(Template tags added to Staff Loop Template)
Your employee profiles will now appear with Facebook and Twitter links as as shown below …
(Employee profiles with social media links added)
Note: If you want to customize your directory but don’t want to mess with CSS styles and template tags or are not sure what to do, please contact us for help.
In addition to allowing you to customize your directory templates, the Simple Staff List plugin lets you display your staff profiles differently using modified shortcodes.
In your dashboard menu, select Staff Members >Usage …
(Staff Members Menu – Usage)
This opens the Usage page …
(Simple Staff List plugin shortcodes)
This screen displays all different shortcode variations you can use with this plugin.
A useful variation you can decide to use, for example, to display only members of a specific group is the shortcode [simple-staff-list group=”group name”], (e.g.:[simple-staff-list group=”sales trainers”])
Or, you can make your listings display in ascending or descending order by adding the shortcode [simple-staff-list order=”ASC”] (ascending).
In the WP admin menu, select Staff Members >Options …
(Staff Members – Options)
This brings up the Options screen …
(Simple Staff List – customizable fields)
Here you can modify labels like Staff Members URL Slug and Staff Member title
You can also export your staff members info from the Tools > Export screen …
(Export Staff Members plugin information)
If you need plugin support, visit the plugin faq page and contact the plugin developer.
Additional Employee Directory Plugins
Simple Staff List is not the only adding a listing of your employees. Here are some other free WordPress plugins you can check out for adding a staff directory on your website:
(Modern Team Staff Directory – WordPress Plugin)
Modern Team Staff Directory 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:
(Staff Directory – WP Plugin)
Staff Directory lets you easily display a list of team/staff/faculty members. The plugin supports staff categories and can be used for churches, schools, etc.
You can also insert custom fields …
(Custom Details Fields Screen. Screenshot sourced from Staff Directory plugin website)
(Faculty And Staff Directory – Plugin For WordPress)
Faculty And Staff Directory was developed to provide a simple and flexible faculty and staff directory for a small college or university.
The plugin also includes a widget that allows you to feature profiles in a widget area.
Learn more about this plugin here:
(Company Directory – WP Staff Directory Plugin)
With Company Directory, you can add your staff to your website. Different layouts are included, including grid and table views, as well as fields like position title, email address, phone, image and member bio, allowing visitors to get to know your company and capabilities.
Visitors will be able to click through from your list, grid, and table views to learn more about each employee in a customizable single view …
(Display your staff and faculty in an easy to view format. Screenshot source: Company Directory plugin website)
This plugin uses a simple shortcode system.
(Employee Spotlight – Plugin For WordPress)
Employee Spotlight displays employees, partners or just an individual member of your team in a 4-column circle grid page. This page can be easily created with a setup assistant on plugin activation.
With this plugin, you also get two sidebar widgets which display featured and recent employees, plus two responsive views which adjust to the screen in the viewer’s device.
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 plugin website)
For more details, visit the plugin site here:
(Staffer – WP Plugin)
The Staffer plugin 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 employee directory on your site …
(Staffer archive page. Screenshot sourced from Staffer website)
Staffer works immediately with almost all 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 List
- WordPress Plugin Staff Directory
- Staff Plugin WordPress
Congratulations! Now you know how to add a simple staff directory to your WordPress site, so your web visitors can get to know your organization better.
Images used to depict fictitious staff members were sourced under creative commons license from pixabay.com
"This is AMAZING! I had learnt about how to use WordPress previously, but this covers absolutely everything and more!! Incredible value! Thank you!" - Monique, Warrior Forum