Consumer buying habits show that people will buy from those they already know, like and trust.
If you are searching for quicker and simpler ways to grow your business online and get people to interact more with your site, then one of the things you can do, is make it easier for visitors to get to know you, your team and your business better.
Adding a faculty directory to your website can help boost your online credibility and get more prospects to contact you.
This tutorial shows you how to create a simple and easy-to-manage directory of employees in your web site.
How To Easily Add A Staff Directory: Step-By-Step Tutorial
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 easily staff members.
The first step is to install and activate the plugin.
Log into the admin and in your admin menu section, click on Plugins > Add New …
(WP 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 Install Now …
(Plugins – plugin search results)
Activate the plugin …
After the plugin has been installed and activated, you will see that a new entry will show up in the WordPress menu bar called Staff Members …
The Staff Members menu is where you will configure and manage all of the settings and options for this plugin are configured and managed from the Staff Members menu.
How To Configure The Simple Staff List Plugin
Depending on how many people are employed in your organization and how you want to structure your directory, you can just start to add new entries after installing the plugin, or create different groups (i.e. categories) that you will assign to your staff.
Staff Members – Groups
To configure your directory groups go to your dashboard menu and choose Staff Members > Groups …
(Staff Members – Groups)
This brings up the Groups screen in your web browser …
Note: Configuring directory groups works just like categories …
(Groups are like WordPress categories)
Create a new group by entering the following information:
- Group Name – Enter your category name here
- Slug – Enter the URL-friendly version of your 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 nested categories
- Description – Type in a group description here
- Click the Add New Group button when finished to create a new group name …
If you are a business that employs many people, being able to set up different categories can be very useful. For example, you can create a category for investors, developers, departments, etc.
Create as many groups and nested categories as you need by adding new Groups and then using the Parent drop-down menu to build a hierarchical structure …
Remember to click on the Add New Group button after creating new items …
To edit or reassign Groups for specific items, hover over a category title and click on the Edit link …
The selected category details will display in the Edit Group screen. Select a new parent category from the Parent dropdown menu …
(Edit Group screen)
Click Update when done …
To change your Group name or slug, hover over the group name and click on Quick Edit …
Click on Update Group when done to save your changes …
Add as many categories as you need to until you have created your directory structure …
Add as many nested groups as you like …
Once you have finished setting up your hierarchical structure, you can start adding names to your directory.
Staff Members – Add New
From your admin menu, choose Staff Members > Add New …
(Staff Members Menu – Add New)
This opens up the Add New Staff Member area …
(Add New Staff Member settings)
This page provides you with an easy-to-use interface for adding your staff member information and includes the following fields:
Name Section (1)
- Name: The employee’s name
- Permalink: You can edit the permalink URL associated with each employee if required (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: Enter your staff member’s position
- Email: Type in your employee’s email
- Phone Number: Your staff member’s phone number
- Facebook URL: Type in the employee’s Facebook URL here (note: use the full URL, e.g. http://www.facebook.com/username)
- Twitter URL: Type your company’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 employee here. Since this uses the built-in WordPress Text Editor, you can use HTML in this section.
Groups Section (5)
- Groups: You can assign a staff or faculty 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 at the top of the screen …
(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 employee’s details …
(Add Staff Member fields)
Once you have entered each of you staff member’s details, assign your new entry to a directory group in the Groups section in the sidebar …
Note: If you did not set up categories before starting to add staff member details, you can create a group now by selecting Groups > + Add New Group …
(Add a new group inside your Groups box)
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 …
The new group will be added. Make sure that the check box is ticked …
Note: Groups cannot be edited when new employee details are being added or edited. To edit an item, go to the Groups section of the plugin’s settings (see “Groups” section of the tutorial above for details).
After entering your staff or team member’s details, click the Publish button …
Click View Post …
To edit your member profile, click on the Edit Staff Member link in your WP admin toolbar …
(Edit Staff Member link – WP admin toolbar)
We have created a detailed tutorial about using the dashboard admin toolbar here:
Note: If ’page not found’ errors shows up like the one shown in the screenshot below, check that you have correctly set up your site permalinks …
(Check your permalinks if you get ’not found’ page errors)
To learn more about setting up WordPress permalinks, go here:
Repeat the above process to add new entries to your staff or team directory.
Staff Members – All Staff Members
After entering staff details to your directory, you can view and edit their details by selecting Staff Members > All Staff Members in the dashboard menu …
(Staff Members Menu – All Staff Members)
This brings up a table listing all your staff members and details you have added with each entry …
(Staff Members details)
If you need to modify individual details, simply hover your mouse over their listing, and a submenu will appear.
Click on Edit to modify the Staff Bio, or Quick Edit to edit details such as their name, slug, group, and publish status. You can also delete someone from the employee directory by clicking on Trash, or view the entry on your site by selecting View …
(Edit Staff Members profile)
If you have many entries, your list can become unwieldy.
Use the Search Staff Members search feature to find items if required …
(Search Staff Members search field)
You can specify which fields can display in this screen. To hide or hide fields on your screen, click the Screen Options tab …
(Staff Members Screen Options tab)
Tick or untick the checkboxes to display or hide specific fields. You can also choose how many staff members are listed 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 in which entries show on your directory page.
Click Staff Members > Order on your main menu …
(Staff Members Menu – Order)
To reorder your items, click and drag the item to its desired position …
(Rearrange items using drag and drop)
Your directory will be automatically reordered …
Once you have added member listing details to your directory, the next step is to make your directory show on your site.
Staff Members – Order
The Simple Staff List plugin also features a drag-and-drop interface that lets you specify the order in which your employees display on your directory pages.
Click Staff Members > Order on the main menu …
(Staff Members – Order)
To rearrange the order of your entries, click and drag the item to its desired location …
(Rearrange listings using drag and drop)
Your staff list will automatically be reordered …
After adding your members’ listing details to your directory, the next step is to display your directory to your site visitors.
Simple Staff List – Additional Notes
Simple Staff List allows you to create the layout and style of your staff directory listings using template tags and CSS (Cascading Style Sheets).
To customize the style and layout of your staff list, select Staff Members > Templates from the main menu …
(Staff Members – Templates)
This brings up the Templates page …
To customize your directory listings, insert any of the allowable template tags inside the [staff_loop] [/staff_loop] code.
For example, here is a screenshot of the Default Staff Loop Template …
(Default Plugin Staff Loop Template)
The above code displays the listing shown below …
(Default Template Listing)
Notice that no Facebook or Twitter URLs are showing in the above listing. To display these fields, we will need to add the [staff-facebook] and [staff-twitter] tags to the template, as shown below …
(Template tags added to Staff Loop Template)
Your staff profiles will now display Facebook and Twitter links as shown in the example below …
(Staff profiles with social media URLs)
Note: If you want to customize your directory listings but don’t want to mess around with code or are not sure how to edit the template as shown above, please contact us for help.
In addition to allowing you to customize your listing templates, the Simple Staff List plugin lets you display your staff profiles differently using modified shortcodes.
In your dashboard menu, click on Staff Members >Usage …
(Staff Members – Usage)
This opens the Usage page …
(Usage Shortcode screen)
This screen displays all the shortcode variations allowed by the Simple Staff List plugin.
For example, a useful variation you can decide to use to display only members belonging a specific group is the shortcode [simple-staff-list group=”group name”], (e.g.:[simple-staff-list group=”Gold Level associates”])
You can also display listings in ascending or descending order by inserting the shortcode [simple-staff-list order=”ASC”] (ascending).
In the menu, select Staff Members >Options …
(Staff Members – Options)
This brings up the Options screen …
(Simple Staff List – customizable fields)
Here you can change labels like Staff Members URL Slug and Staff Member title
You can also export your staff members data from the Tools > Export menu …
(Export Staff Members plugin info)
If you need help with the Simple Staff List plugin, go to the Simple Staff List site and contact the plugin developer.
Other Employee Directory Plugins
Simple Staff List isn’t the only plugin you can use to create a directory of your faculty members in WordPress. For example, here are other free WordPress plugins you can check out:
(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)
Go here to learn more about this plugin:
(Staff Directory – WP Plugin)
Staff Directory lets you easily create a directory of staff/faculty/team members. The plugin supports staff categories and can be used for companies, teams, etc.
You can also use custom fields …
(Custom Details Fields Screen. Screenshot source: Staff Directory website)
(Faculty And Staff Directory)
This 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.
Go here to learn more:
(Company Directory – WP Staff Directory Plugin)
With the Company Directory plugin, you can add your employees, team or faculty to your site. Different layouts are included, including list and customizable single views, as well as fields like job title, email address, phone number, pic 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 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 a simple shortcode system.
To learn more about the plugin go here:
(Employee Spotlight – WordPress Plugin)
Employee Spotlight displays staff members, partners or just one individual person 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 that let you display featured and recent employees selected in the editor, and 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 source: Employee Spotlight website)
(Staffer – WordPress Plugin)
The Staffer plugin 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 an onsite staff directory …
(Staffer archive page. Screenshot source: Staffer website)
Staffer works immediately with many popular WordPress themes, and also allows for custom template use and custom content wrappers.
Learn more about the plugin here:
If the above plugins aren’t what you’re looking for, search the WordPress plugin directory or go online and search for:
- Add Staff Directory To WordPress
- WordPress Staff Directory Plugin
- WordPress Plugin Staff Directory
- Employee Directory WordPress
Hopefully, this tutorial has helped you learn how to create an easy-to-maintain employee directory in your website.
Images used in this tutorial to portray sample staff members were sourced under creative commons license from pixabay.com
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