You have no doubt heard that people tend to buy from those they already know, like and trust.
If you are searching for simple ideas to sell more products or services online, then make it easier for prospects to get to know, like and trust you and your organization better.
Adding a directory of staff to your website can help boost your online credibility and get more prospects contacting you.
In this tutorial, we explain how to create and add a directory of employees to a WordPress site using free plugins.
How To Add A Staff Directory To Your WordPress Site
In this tutorial, we will install, activate and configure a plugin called Simple Staff List.
(Simple Staff List WordPress Plugin)
Simple Staff List lets you easily staff members (you could also use it to display board of directors, etc.).
First, let’s install and activate the plugin.
Log into your WP dashboard and go 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 plugin search results.
Click on the Install Now button …
(WordPress Plugins – plugin search results)
Activate the plugin …
After installing and activating your plugin, a new menu entry will appear in the main WP menu called Staff Members …
(Staff Members menu)
All of the settings and options for this plugin are configured and managed in this menu.
Configuring The Plugin
Depending on the size of your organization and how you want to structure your staff directory, you could begin to add new staff details at this at this stage, or create different groups (i.e. categories) that you will assign to individual group members.
Staff Members – Groups
To configure your directory groups go to your dashboard menu and choose Staff Members > Groups …
(Staff Members – Groups)
The Groups screen …
(Groups settings area)
Note: Adding directory groups is similar to creating WordPress categories …
(Groups work just like WordPress categories)
Create new groups by entering the following information:
- Group Name – Type in your group name
- Slug – Enter the URL-friendly version of your category. Note: make sure that all letters are in lower case and use hyphens instead of spaces.
- Parent – This section lets you set up a directory hierarchy
- Description – Enter your category description
- Click Add New Group when done to set up a new category …
If you work with a larger organization, the ability to set up different categories can be very useful. For example, you can create a category for investors, developers, faculties, 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 hierarchical structure …
Remember to click on the Add New Group button after creating each new item …
To edit Groups for individual entries, hover your mouse over a category title and select the Edit link …
The group will display in the Edit Group page. Select a new category from the Parent drop-down menu …
(Edit Group settings)
Click the Update button to save your changes …
To change the Group name or slug, hover over the group name and select Quick Edit …
Click the Update Group button when done to save your changes …
Continue adding categories 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 directory structure, the next step is to start adding names to your directory.
Staff Members – Add New
In your admin menu, select Staff Members > Add New …
(Staff Members – Add New)
The Add New Staff Member settings screen opens up …
(Add New Staff Member settings screen)
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: The employee’s name
- Slug: Change the slug for your staff member if required (this section appears after your first save).
Staff Photo Section (2)
- Photo: Upload a photo here
Staff Member Info Section (3)
- Position: Type the staff member’s position here
- Email: Type in the person’s email address
- Phone Number: Type in the person’s phone number
- Facebook URL: Type in your company’s Facebook address (note: use the full URL, e.g. http://www.facebook.com/username)
- Twitter URL: Type 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: Enter a profile description for your staff or team member here. This uses the WordPress Text Editor, so you can use HTML in this section.
Groups Section (5)
- Groups: Assign an employee or team member to a specific group (see above to learn how to set up your groups).
Click on the Screen Options tab …
You can enable additional features …
(Enable additional fields in screen options)
Now that you know what each section does, enter your staff member’s details …
(Add Staff Member fields)
After you are done inputting details, assign your new entry to a directory group in the Groups section located in the sidebar …
Note: If you did not set up your directory groups before starting to add new staff members, you can add a new group by selecting Groups > + Add New Group …
(Groups > + Add New Group link)
A field for entering a new group name will display, 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 created. Remember to tick the check box to assign your employee’s details to the group …
Note: You cannot edit groups when adding or editing new employee details. To edit an item, go to the Groups section of the plugin’s settings (see “Groups” section above for details).
After entering your employee’s details, click the Publish button …
Click View Post …
You can modify the person’s profile by clicking the Edit Staff Member link in the WP admin toolbar …
(Edit Staff Member link – WP admin toolbar)
To learn more about using the WP admin toolbar, refer to this tutorial:
Note: If you have set up groups and get ’page not found’ errors like the one shown below, check that you have correctly set up your site’s permalinks …
(Check your permalinks if you get ’page not found’ errors)
For a detailed step-by-step tutorial about setting up WP permalinks, go here:
Repeat the above process to continue adding more entries to your directory directory.
Staff Members – All Staff Members
After entering staff members into your directory, you can view and edit details by choosing Staff Members > All Staff Members on your WordPress admin menu …
(Staff Members – All Staff Members)
This brings up a table listing all the directory entries and all details you have added related to each entry …
(Staff Members list)
If you need to change individual entries, just hover your mouse over their name, and a submenu will appear.
Click on Edit to modify their Staff Bio, or Quick Edit to change details such as their name, slug, group, and publish status. You can also remove a listing from your employee directory by clicking on the Trash link, or view the entry on your site by clicking on View …
(Editing Staff Members profile)
If you have many items added to this section, your table can get quite long.
Use the Search Staff Members search field to find entries if necessary …
You can specify which fields can display in this screen. To hide or hide fields on your screen, click on Screen Options …
(Staff Members Screen Options)
Tick or untick the checkboxes to display or hide fields. You can also select how many staff members are shown per page. Click Apply when done to save your settings …
Staff Members – Order
Simple Staff List also features a drag-and-drop interface that lets you specify the order that listings appear on your directory pages.
Click Staff Members > Order in the menu …
(Staff Members Menu – Order)
To rearrange the order of your items, click and drag the entry to the new position …
(Reorder items using drag and drop)
Your directory will automatically be reorganized …
After adding all employees’ listing details to the directory, the next step is to make your directory show on your site.
Staff Members – Order
The plugin also features a drag-and-drop interface allowing you to specify the order that your employee profiles display on your directory page.
Click Staff Members > Order on your main admin menu …
(Staff Members Menu – Order)
To reorder your items, click and drag the item to its desired location …
(Rearrange listings using drag and drop)
Your staff list will automatically be reorganized …
(Reordered list items)
Once you have added all of your members’ listing details to the directory, the next step is to display your directory to your site users.
Simple Staff List – Additional Notes
The plugin allows you to edit the style and layout of your employee directory items using template tags and CSS (Cascading Style Sheets).
To customize the layout and style of your employee directory, select Staff Members > Templates from your menu …
(Staff Members Menu – Templates)
This brings up the Templates screen …
(Simple Staff List Templates page)
To customize your directory, insert any of the allowable template tags inside the [staff_loop] [/staff_loop] code.
For example, here is the Default Staff Loop Template …
(Default Simple Staff List Template)
The above code displays the listing shown below …
(Default Plugin Staff Loop Template Listing)
Notice that no Facebook or Twitter URLs are showing in the above example. To make these fields show up in your 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 can be added to the Staff Loop Template to customize your directory page)
Your directory profiles will now display as as the example below shows …
(Directory with social media URLs)
Note: If you want to customize your directory but don’t want to mess with editing code or are unsure of what to do, please contact us for help.
In addition to being able to customize your listing templates, the Simple Staff List plugin allows you to display your listings differently using modified shortcodes.
In your main admin menu, choose Staff Members >Usage …
(Staff Members Menu – Usage)
This opens the Usage page …
(Usage Shortcode section)
This screen lists all the shortcode variations you can use.
For example, a useful variation you can add to your page to display only members belonging a specific group is the shortcode [simple-staff-list group=”group name”], (e.g.:[simple-staff-list group=”Asia Pacific Region”])
You can also make your listings display in ascending or descending order by inserting the shortcode [simple-staff-list order=”DESC”] (descending).
Select Staff Members >Options in the menu …
(Staff Members Menu – Options)
This brings up the Options screen …
(Simple Staff List – Options screen)
This section lets you change some of the labels used in the plugin
Finally, you can also export your staff members info by going to the menu and selecting Tools > Export …
(Export Staff Members information)
If you need plugin help or support, go to the plugin plugin site.
Other Staff Directory Plugins
Simple Staff List is not the only for creating a directory of your team members in WordPress. Here are some other free plugins you can use:
(Modern Team Staff Directory – Plugin For WordPress)
The Modern Team Staff Directory 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)
For more details, visit the plugin site here:
(Staff Directory – WordPress Plugin)
This plugin lets you easily create a directory of staff/faculty/team members. The plugin supports staff categories and can be used for churches, schools, etc.
The plugin also lets you add custom fields …
(Custom Details Fields Screen. Screenshot sourced from Staff Directory website)
Learn more here:
(Faculty And Staff Directory – Plugin For WordPress)
The Faculty And Staff Directory plugin was developed to provide a simple and flexible faculty and staff directory for a small college, school or university.
The plugin also installs a widget that allows you to feature a profile in a widget area.
(Company Directory – Plugin For WordPress)
With Company Directory, you can easily add your staff, team or faculty to your site. Different layouts are included, including grid and single views, plus as fields like job 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 source: Company Directory plugin website)
This plugin uses shortcodes.
Go here to learn more:
(Employee Spotlight – WordPress Plugin)
Employee Spotlight displays employees, founders or just an individual person in a 4-column circle grid page. This page can be easily created with a setup assistant on plugin activation.
Employee Spotlight installs with two sidebar widgets which display featured and recent employees, plus two responsive views which adjust to the screen size of 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 employee circle grid. Screenshot sourced from plugin website)
(Staffer – WordPress 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 staff directory …
(Staffer archive page. Screenshot source: Staffer website)
Staffer works with almost all WordPress themes, and also allows for custom template use and custom content wrappers.
For more details go here:
If the directory plugins listed above 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 Directory Plugin WordPress
Hopefully, this step-by-step tutorial has shown you how to create an easy-to-update directory of staff in your site.
Images of persons used to depict sample staff members were sourced under creative commons license from pixabay.com
"Wow! I never knew there's so much to learn about WordPress! I bought one of the WordPress for Dummies three years ago, such authors need to be on this course!" - Rich Law, Create A Blog Now