Business experts have successfully demonstrated that people generally buy from people they already know, like and trust.
If you are looking for inexpensive ways to sell more products or services online or get people to stay longer on your site, then one of the things you can do, is help prospects get to know you and your business better.
If you use WordPress, a simple way to help visitors get to know you better is to display information about your key partners, your faculty, or your staff members using a directory plugin.
This step-by-step tutorial explains how to create and add a simple and easy-to-update employee directory to your WordPress site.
WordPress Plugin Tutorial: How To Add A Staff List Directory To Your WordPress Site
In this tutorial, you will learn how to install, activate and configure a no cost WordPress plugin called Simple Staff List.
(Simple Staff List – WordPress Plugin)
Simple Staff List lets you build a basic staff directory list for.
First, let’s install and activate the plugin.
Log into your administration and from the admin menu, select Plugins > Add New …
(Plugins Menu – Add New)
In the Plugins screen, search for “simple staff plugin”. This brings up the Simple Staff Plugin in your search results area.
Click on the Install Now button …
(Plugins – Add Plugins screen)
Activate the plugin …
After installing and activating the plugin, you will notice that new entry will have been added to your WordPress menu section called Staff Members …
This menu is where you will manage and configure all of the settings and options for the Simple Staff List plugin are configured and managed in this menu.
Configuring Simple Staff List
Depending on the size of your business and how you want to structure your directory, you can just begin adding new staff member details after installing the plugin, or create various groups (i.e. categories) that you will assign to your employees.
Staff Members – Groups
Let’s start by configuring your directory categories. In your dashboard menu, select Staff Members > Groups …
(Staff Members Menu – Groups)
This brings you to the Groups settings panel …
(Groups settings screen)
Note: Setting up groups works just like categories in WordPress …
(Groups are like categories)
Create new groups by typing in the following information:
- Group Name – Type in your group name
- Slug – Enter the URL-friendly version of your group category name. Note: make sure that all letters are in lower case and use hyphens instead of spaces.
- Parent – This section lets you set up nested categories
- Description – Enter a category description
- Click Add New Group when finished to create your new category …
If you run a larger organization, being able to set up different categories can be very useful. For example, you can create categories for founders, 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 directory hierarchy …
Remember to click the Add New Group button after entering new items …
To change Groups for individual entries, hover your mouse button over a category title and select the Edit link …
The item will display in the Edit Group page. Select a new parent group category from the Parent drop-down menu …
(Edit Group screen)
Click the Update button to save your changes …
To change the Group name or slug, hover over the group name and choose Quick Edit …
Click Update Group when done to save your changes …
Continue adding group names to this section until you are done creating your directory structure …
Add as many nested categories as you like …
Once you have finished setting up your hierarchical structure, you can start to add your people to your directory.
Staff Members – Add New
In your admin menu, select Staff Members > Add New …
(Staff Members – Add New)
This opens up the Add New Staff Member screen in your browser …
(Add New Staff Member settings screen)
This area provides you with an easy-to-use interface for adding your staff member information and includes the following fields:
Name Section (1)
- Name: Your staff member’s name
- Slug: Change each staff members’ permalink URL (you will see this section after saving your details).
Staff Photo Section (2)
- Photo: Upload a photo here
Staff Member Info Section (3)
- Position: Type the person’s position
- Email: The employee’s email address
- Phone Number: Add the person’s phone number
- Facebook URL: Type the person’s Facebook address (note: use the full URL, e.g. http://www.facebook.com/username)
- Twitter URL: Enter the person’s Twitter username here (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 use HTML in this section.
Groups Section (5)
- Groups: This section lets you assign an employee or team member to a specific group (see the previous section of this tutorial to learn how to set up your groups).
If you click on the Screen Options tab …
(Screen options tab)
You will see options to enable additional features …
(Enable additional fields in screen options)
Now that you know what each section does, enter each employee’s details …
(Add New Staff Member fields)
Once you are done entering details, assign your new item to a directory group in the Groups feature in your sidebar …
Note: If you have not set up your directory groups before adding new staff members, you can create a group now by clicking on Groups > + Add New Group …
(Groups - + Add New Group)
A field will appear allowing you to enter a new group name, with a dropdown menu that lets you assign your new entry to a parent group. Enter your new category and click on Add New Group …
A new category will be added. Remember to tick the check box to assign the person’s entry to the group …
Note: Groups cannot be edited when adding or making changes to an individual’s 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 or faculty member’s details, click the Publish button …
Click View Post …
To modify your employee’s profile, click on the Edit Staff Member link in your admin toolbar …
(Edit Staff Member link – WP admin toolbar)
We have written a detailed tutorial on using the dashboard admin toolbar here:
Note: If a page error shows up like the one shown in the screenshot below, check that your site’s permalinks have been set up correctly …
(Not found error? Check your permalinks)
If you need help setting up permalinks in WordPress, go here:
Repeat the above process to continue adding new members to your staff or team directory.
Staff Members – All Staff Members
After you are done entering staff or faculty members to your directory, you can view and edit details by clicking Staff Members > All Staff Members on the menu …
(Staff Members – All Staff Members)
This brings up a table displaying all your staff members and details you have added related to each entry …
(Staff Members details list)
If you need to modify individual details, hover over their name, and a menu will appear.
Click on Edit if you want to make changes to their Staff Bio, or Quick Edit to change details such as their name, slug, group, and publish status. You can also delete a list item from your staff directory by clicking on Trash, or view the entry on your site by clicking View …
(Edit Staff Members profile info)
Depending on what you are using the plugin for, your table can get quite long.
You can use the Search Staff Members search box to locate member details if required …
You can specify which fields to display in this section. To show or hide fields on your screen, click the Screen Options tab …
(Staff Members Screen Options)
Tick or untick the checkboxes to show or hide fields. You can also select how many staff members are shown per page. Click the Apply button when finished to update your settings …
Staff Members – Order
The Simple Staff List plugin also features a drag-and-drop interface that lets you specify the order in which entries appear on your directory page.
Select Staff Members > Order in your menu …
(Staff Members Menu – Order)
To rearrange the order of your listings, click and drag the entry to the desired location …
(Reorder items using drag and drop)
Your staff list will be automatically rearranged …
(Reordered list items)
Once you have added member details to your directory, the next step is to add your directory to your visitors.
Staff Members – Order
The Simple Staff List plugin also features a drag-and-drop interface allowing you to set the order in which listings display on your directory page.
Choose Staff Members > Order on the menu …
(Staff Members Menu – Order)
To reorder your listings, click and drag the entry to the new position …
(Reorder listings using drag and drop)
Your staff list will automatically be reorganized …
(Reordered list entries)
Once you have added all of your members’ listing details to the directory, the next step is to display the directory to your site users.
Simple Staff List – Additional Notes
The Simple Staff List plugin lets you customize the layout and style of your directory items using template tags and CSS (Cascading Style Sheets).
To customize the layout and style of your directory, select Staff Members > Templates from the menu …
(Staff Members – Templates)
This opens the Templates page …
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 listings …
(Default Staff Loop Template)
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 appear in the directory, we will need to add the [staff-facebook] and [staff-twitter] tags to the template, as shown in the screenshot below …
(Template tags can be added to Staff Loop Template)
Here is what your listings page should now look like …
(Directory listings with social media links)
Note: If you want to customize your directory but don’t want to mess with editing code or are not sure how to edit the template as shown above, please contact us for help.
As well as being able to customize your listing templates, the Simple Staff List plugin allows you to display your staff profiles differently using modified shortcodes.
In your menu, click on Staff Members >Usage …
(Staff Members Menu – Usage)
This brings up the Usage page …
(Usage Shortcode section)
This screen displays all the shortcode variations that the Simple Staff List plugin allows you to use.
For example, a useful variation you can choose to display a list of persons belonging only to a specific group is the shortcode [simple-staff-list group=”group name”], (e.g.:[simple-staff-list group=”customer representatives”])
You can also display listings in ascending or descending order by inserting the shortcode [simple-staff-list order=”DESC”] (descending).
In your main menu, select Staff Members >Options …
(Staff Members Menu – Options)
This brings up the Options page …
(Simple Staff List – Options screen)
Here you can change some of the labels used in the plugin
Finally, you can also export your staff members details by going to the main menu and choosing Tools > Export …
(Export Staff Members plugin info)
If you need plugin help or support, go to the Simple Staff List plugin website.
Other WordPress Plugins For Creating Simple Staff Directories
Simple Staff List is not the only for displaying a directory of your employees in WordPress. Here are a few other plugins you can use:
(Modern Team Staff Directory)
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)
Learn more about this plugin here:
(Staff Directory – WordPress Staff Directory Plugin)
This plugin lets you easily display a list of faculty/team/staff members. The plugin supports staff categories and can be used for companies, teams, etc.
This plugin lets you set up custom fields …
(Custom Details Fields. Screenshot sourced from plugin website)
For more details, visit the plugin site here:
(Faculty And Staff Directory – WP Staff Directory Plugin)
Faculty And Staff Directory was developed to provide a simple and flexible faculty and staff directory for a small college, school or university.
The plugin also includes a widget that allows you to feature profiles in a widget area.
(Company Directory – WP Plugin)
With Company Directory, you can easily add your staff to your website. Different layouts are available, including list and table views, plus as fields like title, email address, phone, photo and bio, allowing you to present your company and capabilities.
Visitors can 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: plugin website)
This plugin also uses a simple shortcode system.
Learn more here:
Employee Spotlight displays team members, founders or just a single member of your team in a four-column circle grid page. This page can be easily created with a setup assistant upon plugin activation.
The Employee Spotlight plugincomes with two sidebar widgets which display featured and recent employees selected in the editor, plus two responsive views which adjust to the screen in the viewer’s device.
Detailed information about each employee can be displayed in their own page, as well as in summary …
(Responsive layout with employee circle grid. Screenshot source: Employee Spotlight plugin website)
This 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 website …
(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.
Go here to learn more about the plugin:
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
- WordPress Plugin Staff Directory
- Staff Plugin WordPress
Hopefully, this tutorial has explained how to create an easy-to-manage directory of staff in your site.
Models used to display fictitious staff members were sourced under creative commons license from pixabay.com