Something that’s been proven to work in business, is that people will mostly buy from businesses they know, like and trust.
Are you looking for quicker, easier and cost-effective ideas to grow your business online? Then one of the things you can do, is help prospects get to know, like and trust you and your business better.
Adding a directory of employees to your website can help increase your credibility online and get interested prospects buying from you.
This tutorial explains how to create a simple and easy-to-update directory of staff members in your WordPress site.
WordPress Plugin Tutorial: How To Easily Add An Employee List Directory
In this tutorial, we will install, activate and configure a no cost WordPress plugin called Simple Staff List.
(Simple Staff List – WordPress Plugin)
Simple Staff List is a free plugin that lets you staff members (you could also use it to display board of directors, etc.).
First, let’s install and activate the Simple Staff List plugin.
Log into your WP dashboard and go to Plugins > Add New …
(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 the Install Now button …
(WordPress Plugins – plugin search results)
Click on Activate Plugin …
After the plugin has been installed and activated, a new menu will be added to the main WP admin menu called Staff Members …
All of the options and settings for this plugin are configured and managed from this menu.
Configuring Simple Staff List
Depending on how many people are in your business and how you want to structure your staff directory, you can begin adding new employee details at this point, or create different groups (i.e. categories) that you will assign to individual staff.
Staff Members – Groups
Let’s configure your groups. From your WP dashboard menu, select Staff Members > Groups …
(Staff Members Menu – Groups)
This opens up the Groups screen in your web browser …
Note: Setting up groups is just like setting up categories …
(Groups work just like categories)
Create new groups by entering the following information:
- Group Name – Enter your group name here
- 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 – Use this drop-down menu if you plan to set up a directory hierarchy
- Description – Enter a category description in this field (optional)
- Click Add New Group when finished to create a new group …
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 founders, project teams, faculties, etc.
Create as many categories and nested categories as you want 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 new items …
To edit or reassign Groups for an entry, hover over a category title and click on the Edit link …
The category will open in the Edit Group page. Select a new group category from the Parent drop-down menu …
(Edit Group screen)
Click Update to save your changes …
To edit the Group name or slug, hover over the group name and choose the Quick Edit menu feature …
Click Update Group when done to save your changes …
Add as many categories as you need to until you have created your directory structure …
You can add as many nested categories as you like …
After you have finished setting up your hierarchical structure, you can start adding names to your directory.
Staff Members – Add New
In your WP admin menu, select Staff Members > Add New …
(Staff Members – Add New)
This takes you to the Add New Staff Member settings screen …
(Add New Staff Member settings area)
This area provides you with an easy-to-use interface for adding your staff member profile and includes the following fields:
Name Section (1)
- Name: Your staff member’s name
- Permalink: Modify the permalink URL for each employee if required (this section appears after saving your details).
Staff Photo Section (2)
- Photo: Upload a photo of your staff member
Staff Member Info Section (3)
- Position: The employee’s role
- Email: The staff member’s email
- Phone Number: Add the person’s phone number here
- Facebook URL: Enter your staff member’s Facebook address (note: use the full URL, e.g. http://www.facebook.com/username)
- Twitter URL: Add 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 staff member here. Since this uses the default WordPress Text Editor, you can add formatting to the content entered into this section.
Groups Section (5)
- Groups: Assign an employee or faculty member to a group (see above to learn how to set up your groups).
Click on the Screen Options tab at the top of the screen …
(Screen options tab)
You can enable additional features …
(Enable additional fields in screen options tab)
Now that you know what each section does, enter each of your staff member’s details …
(Add Staff Member fields)
Once you have entered details, assign your new item to a directory group in the Groups section in your sidebar …
Note: If you did not set up groups before starting to add staff member details, you can add a new group by clicking on Groups > + Add New Group …
(Add a new group inside your Groups box)
A field for entering a new group name will display, with a drop-down menu to assign your new entry to a parent group. Type in the name of your new directory category and click on the Add New Group button …
A new category will be added. Make sure that the check box is ticked …
Note: Groups cannot be edited when adding or editing a staff member’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 staff or faculty member’s details, click the Publish button …
Click View Post …
To modify the employee’s profile, click on the Edit Staff Member link in your admin toolbar …
(Edit Staff Member link – WP admin toolbar)
To learn more about using the WP admin toolbar , go here:
Note: If a ‘page not found’ error like the one shown in the example below shows up, check that you have configured your permalinks correctly …
(Check your permalinks if you get ’not found’ page errors)
If you need help setting up permalinks in WordPress, go here:
Keep adding new details to your staff or member directory as described above.
Staff Members – All Staff Members
After entering staff or team members to your directory, you can view and edit details by choosing Staff Members > All Staff Members in the menu …
(Staff Members Menu – All Staff Members)
This brings up a table listing all your directory items and details you have added with each entry …
(Staff Members list)
If you need to modify individual details, hover your mouse over their list name, and a submenu will appear.
Click on Edit if you want to modify their Staff Bio, or Quick Edit to change details like name, slug, group, and publish status. You can also delete a member from your directory by clicking on the Trash link, or view the entry on your site by clicking on View …
(Editing Staff Members profile info)
If you have many employees, your list can grow quite large.
Use the Search Staff Members search feature to locate a member if necessary …
(Search Staff Members search field)
The plugin also allows you to specify which fields can display in this screen. To hide or hide fields on your screen, click the Screen Options tab …
(Screen Options tab)
Tick or untick the checkboxes to display or hide specific fields. You can also specify how many staff members are listed per page. Click Apply when done to save your screen options …
Staff Members – Order
Simple Staff List also features a drag-and-drop interface that lets you specify the order that your employees show on your directory pages.
Select Staff Members > Order on the dashboard menu …
(Staff Members – Order)
To reorder your listings, click and drag the entry to its desired location …
(Reorder items using drag and drop)
Your staff list will automatically be reordered …
(Reordered list items)
Once you are done adding all of your employees’ listing details to the directory, the next step is to add your directory to your visitors.
Staff Members – Order
Simple Staff List also features a drag-and-drop interface that lets you set the order in which listings appear on your directory pages.
Click Staff Members > Order on the main admin menu …
(Staff Members Menu – Order)
To reorder your items, click and drag the item to the new location …
(Reorder listings using drag and drop)
Your directory will automatically be rearranged …
After adding all member details to your directory, the next step is to make the directory show to your site visitors.
Simple Staff List – Additional Notes
The plugin also lets you customize the layout and style of your directory entries using template tags and CSS (Cascading Style Sheets).
To customize the layout and style of your staff list, 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 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 Simple Staff List Staff Loop Template)
The This code will display your directory listing as shown below …
(Default Simple Staff List Staff Loop Template Listing)
Notice that no Facebook or Twitter URLs are showing in the above example. To display these fields, you will need to include the [staff-facebook] and [staff-twitter] template tags, as shown in the screenshot below …
(Use template tags to customize your directory page)
Your staff details will now display with Facebook and Twitter addresses as shown in the screenshot below …
(Directory listings with social media links)
Note: If you want to customize your directory listings but don’t want to mess around with CSS styles and template tags or are unsure of what to do, please contact us for help.
As well as allowing you to customize your directory templates, the Simple Staff List plugin allows you to display your staff profiles differently using modified shortcodes.
In your main admin menu, select Staff Members >Usage …
(Staff Members – Usage)
This brings up the Usage page …
(Simple Staff List – Usage shortcodes)
This screen displays all the shortcode variations allowed by the plugin.
For example, a useful shortcode variation you can add to your page to display only members of 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 adding the shortcode [simple-staff-list order=”DESC”] (descending).
Click Staff Members >Options in the dashboard menu …
(Staff Members – Options)
This brings up the Options screen …
(Simple Staff List – customizable options)
This section lets you modify labels like Staff Members URL Slug and Staff Member titles
You can also export your staff members data by going to the dashboard menu and selecting Tools > Export …
(Export Staff Members info)
If you need plugin support, visit the Simple Staff List website and contact the plugin developer.
Additional WordPress Plugins For Creating Staff Directories
Simple Staff List isn’t the only for creating a directory of your staff in WordPress. For example, here are some other plugins you can use:
(Modern Team Staff Directory – Plugin For WordPress)
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)
(Staff Directory – WP Plugin)
Staff Directory lets you easily display a list of staff/faculty/team members. The plugin supports staff categories and can be used for churches, schools, etc.
You can also create custom fields …
(Custom Details Fields. Screenshot source: Staff Directory plugin website)
Go here to learn more:
(Faculty And Staff Directory – WP Staff Directory Plugin)
The Faculty And Staff Directory plugin 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 here:
(Company Directory – Plugin For WordPress)
Company Directory lets you easily add your staff, team or faculty to your site. Different layouts are included, including list and table views, as well as fields like job title, email address, phone number, image and 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 sourced from Company Directory plugin website)
This plugin also uses simple shortcodes.
Learn more here:
(Employee Spotlight – Plugin For WordPress)
Employee Spotlight displays staff members, founders or just an individual person in a four-column circle grid page. This page can be easily created with a setup assistant upon plugin activation.
This plugin comes with two sidebar widgets which display featured and recent employees, 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 plugin website)
For more details, visit the plugin site here:
(Staffer – WP Plugin)
Staffer uses custom post types for employee 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.
Learn more 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
- Staff Directory WordPress Plugin
- Employee Directory WordPress
Hopefully, this step-by-step tutorial has helped you learn how to create and add an easy-to-update directory of employees to your site.
Images of persons used to depict 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