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How To Add A Staff Directory In WordPress

Many business experts have successfully proven over time that people will buy from businesses they already know, like and trust.

If you are searching for quicker, simpler and cheaper ways to sell more products or services online and get people to stay longer on your site, then help your visitors get to know, like and trust your organization better.

If your website uses the WordPress CMS platform, a simple way to help visitors get to know you better is to add a staff list plugin that will let you display a directory listing with information about your key people, your business team, or your employees.

This step-by-step tutorial will show you how to create and add a simple and easy-to-maintain directory of staff to your website.

WordPress Plugin Tutorial: Adding An Employee List Directory To Your WordPress Site

In this tutorial, we will install, activate and configure a free plugin called Simple Staff List.

Simple Staff List – WordPress Plugin

(Simple Staff List WordPress Plugin)

Simple Staff List lets you easily create a basic staff directory for.

The first step is to install and activate this plugin.

Log into the administration and from the admin menu section, click on 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 plugin search results.

Click on Install Now

(WordPress Plugins  – Add Plugins screen)

Activate the plugin …

(Activate plugin)

After the plugin has been installed and activated, you will notice that new entry will display on the main WP menu bar called Staff Members

(Staff Members menu)

All of the options and settings for your plugin are configured and managed from the Staff Members menu.

Plugin Configuration

Depending on how many people are in your business and how you want to structure your staff directory, you can start to add new entries at this point, or create different groups (i.e. categories) that you will assign to your staff members.

Staff Members – Groups

To set up your directory groups go to your dashboard menu and choose Staff Members > Groups

(Staff Members – Groups)

The Groups screen …

(Groups screen)

Note: Setting up groups works just like categories …

(Groups work just like categories)

Add new groups by entering the following information:

  1. Group Name – Enter your group name here
  2. Slug – Type in the URL-friendly version of your category name. Note: make sure that all letters are in lower case and use hyphens instead of spaces.
  3. Parent – Use this section to set up a directory hierarchy
  4. Description – Enter the category description here (optional)
  5. Click Add New Group when done to set up your new category …

(Groups settings)

If you work with a business that employs many people, being able to set up different categories can be very useful. For example, you can create a group for founders, project teams, departments, etc.

Create as many groups and nested groups as you need by adding new Groups and then using the Parent drop-down menu to assign these to a directory hierarchy …

(Nested groups)

Remember to click on the Add New Group button after creating new items …

To edit Groups for individual items, hover over a category title and select the Edit link …

The selected 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 when done …

To edit your Group name or slug, hover over the group name and select Quick Edit

Click on Update Group  when done to save your changes …

Continue adding group names in this section until you have created your directory structure …

Add as many nested categories as you like …

(Nested categories)

Once you are done setting up your hierarchical structure, you can start adding staff details to your directory.

Staff Members – Add New

From your admin menu, choose Staff Members > Add New

(Staff Members – Add New)

The Add New Staff Member settings screen opens up …

(Add New Staff Member settings screen)

This area provides you with an easy-to-use interface for adding and editing your staff member details and includes the following fields:

Name Section (1)

Staff Photo Section (2)

Staff Member Info Section (3)

Staff Member Bio Section (4)

Groups Section (5)

If you 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 employee’s details …

(Add New Staff Member fields)

Once you have entered each staff member’s details, assign the new entry to a directory group in the Groups feature in the sidebar …

(Groups section)

Note: If you have not set up groups before adding staff member details, you can add a new group in this screen by clicking on 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 drop-down menu to assign your new entry to a parent group. Type in the name of your new group and click on Add New Group

The new group will be added. Make sure that the check box is ticked …

(New group added)

Note: Groups cannot be edited when a staff member’s details are being added or modified. To edit an item, go to the Groups section of the plugin’s settings (see “Groups” section above for details).


After typing in your employee’s details, click the Publish button to add them to your employee directory …

Click View Post

You can modify your member profile by clicking the Edit Staff Member link in the WP admin toolbar …

(Edit Staff Member link – WordPress admin toolbar)

To learn more about using the dashboard admin toolbar, refer to this step-by-step tutorial:

Note: If ’not found’ page errors like the one shown in the example below shows up, check that you have correctly set up your permalinks …

(Not found error? Check your permalinks)

We have written a detailed tutorial on using permalinks in WordPress here:

Continue adding more members to your staff or faculty directory as shown above until done.

Staff Members – All Staff Members

After entering staff members into your directory, you can view and edit details by selecting Staff Members > All Staff Members on your dashboard menu …

(Staff Members Menu – All Staff Members)

This brings up a list displaying all your directory items and their details …

(Staff Members details table)

If you need to change an individual’s entry, hover your mouse over their list name, and a menu will appear.

Click on Edit to modify the item’s Staff Bio, or Quick Edit to change details like name, slug, group, and publish status. You can also delete a member from your staff directory by clicking on Trash, or view the entry on your site by clicking View

(Editing Staff Members profile info)

Depending on what you are using the plugin for, your list can become unwieldy.

You can use the Search Staff Members search field to locate a member if necessary …

(Search Staff Members search field)

The plugin also allows you to specify which fields to display in this screen. To hide or hide fields on your screen, click the Screen Options tab at the top of your page …

(Screen Options tab)

Placing a tick in the item’s check box displays the field and unchecking a box hides the field. You can also select how many staff members are listed per page. Click the Apply button when done to save your screen options …

Staff Members – Order

The plugin also features a drag-and-drop interface that allows you to arrange the order that your employee profiles display on your directory pages.

Choose Staff Members > Order in the main menu …

(Staff Members – Order)

To rearrange the order of your items, click and drag the entry to the new location …

(Reorder listings using drag and drop)

Your directory will automatically be reordered …

(Reordered list entries)

After adding all employees’ listing details to your directory, the next step is to display the 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 your employee profiles appear on your directory page.

Select Staff Members > Order on your main menu …

(Staff Members Menu – Order)

To rearrange the order of your entries, click and drag the item to its desired position …

(Rearrange listings using drag and drop)

Your list will be automatically reordered …

(Reordered listings)

After adding all employees’ details to your directory, the next step is to display your directory to your site visitors.

Simple Staff List – Additional Notes

The Simple Staff List plugin also lets you customize the style and layout of your directory listings using template tags and CSS (Cascading Style Sheets).

Templates Menu

To customize the layout and style of your staff list, select Staff Members > Templates from the menu …

(Staff Members Menu – Templates)

This brings up the Templates page …

(Customize your directory template)

To customize your directory, insert any of the allowed template tags inside the [staff_loop] [/staff_loop] code.

For example, below is a screenshot of the Default Template

(Default Plugin Template)

The above code displays the listing shown below …

(Default Plugin Template Listing)

Notice that there are no Facebook or Twitter URLs showing in the above listing. To display these fields, we will need to include the [staff-facebook] and [staff-twitter] template tags, as shown in the example below …

(Template tags can be added to the Staff Loop Template to customize your listings page)

Here is what your directory will now look like …

(Employee profiles with social media links)

Note: If you want to customize your directory but don’t want to mess around with CSS styles and template tags or are not sure how to edit the template as shown above, please contact us for assistance.

Usage Menu

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 dashboard menu, select Staff Members >Usage

(Staff Members – Usage)

This brings up the Usage page …

(Simple Staff List shortcodes)

This screen displays all the shortcode variations that you can use with the Simple Staff List plugin.

A useful shortcode variation you can add to your page, for example, 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=”sales managers”])

Or, you can make your listings display in ascending or descending order by using the shortcode [simple-staff-list order=”ASC”] (ascending).

Options Menu

In the menu, select Staff Members >Options

(Staff Members – Options)

This brings up the Options screen …

(Simple Staff List – customizable fields)

This section lets you edit some of the labels used in the plugin

You can also export your staff members data from the Tools > Export menu …

(Export Staff Members info)

If you need plugin support, go to the Simple Staff List support page.

Additional WordPress Plugins For Creating Staff Directories

Simple Staff List isn’t the only for displaying a directory of your faculty. For example, here are other free WordPress plugins you can use:

Modern Team Staff Directory

(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)

To learn more about the plugin go here:

Staff Directory

(Staff Directory – WordPress Plugin)

The Staff Directory plugin lets you easily create a directory of staff/faculty/team members. The plugin supports staff categories and can be used for companies, schools, etc.

This plugin lets you set up custom fields …

(Custom Details Fields. Screenshot source: Staff Directory website)

Go here to learn more:

Faculty And Staff Directory

(Faculty And Staff Directory – WP Staff Directory Plugin)

Faculty And Staff Directory provides 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 profiles in a widget area.

To learn more about the plugin go here:

Company Directory

(Company Directory – WP Plugin)

This plugin lets you easily add your employees, team or faculty to your website. Different layouts are included, including grid and single views, as well as fields like position title, email, phone number, pic and member bio, allowing you to present your company and capabilities.

Visitors can click through from your list, grid, and table views to read more about each employee in a customizable single view …

(Display your staff and faculty members in an easy-to-view format. Screenshot source: plugin website)

This plugin uses shortcodes.

For more details, visit the plugin site here:

Employee Spotlight

(Employee Spotlight – Plugin For WordPress)

Employee Spotlight displays employees, partners or just an individual member of your team in a four-column circle grid page. This page can be easily created with a setup assistant on plugin activation.

Employee Spotlight installs with two sidebar widgets that let you display featured and recent employees, and two responsive views which adjust to the screen size of 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 sourced from plugin website)

Go here to learn more about this plugin:


(Staffer – Plugin For WordPress)

The Staffer plugin 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 employee directory on your website …

(Staffer archive page. Screenshot source: plugin website)

Staffer works immediately with many popular WordPress themes, and also allows for custom template use and custom content wrappers.

Learn more about this plugin here:

If the directory plugins listed above aren’t what you’re looking for, search the WordPress plugin directory or go online and search for:

Congratulations! Now you know how to add and create a simple employee directory to your WordPress site, so your web visitors can get to know you and the people in your business better.

Images of models used to display fictitious staff members in this tutorial were sourced under creative commons license from pixabay.com


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