WordPress For Non-Techies: Free WordPress Tutorials – WPCompendium.org

How To Add A Staff Directory In WordPress

No doubt you’ve already heard that people often tend to buy from those they know, like and trust.

Are you looking for inexpensive ideas to sell more products online? Then one of the things you can do, is make it easier for visitors to get to know you, your team and your organization better.

If you use WordPress, a simple way to help people get to know you better is to add a WordPress directory plugin that will let you display information about your key people, your business team, or your staff members.

In this tutorial, you are going to learn how to create and add a list of staff members in your web site without using code.

Plugin Tutorial: Adding An Employee Directory

In this tutorial, you will learn how to install, activate and configure a no cost plugin called Simple Staff List.

Simple Staff List – WordPress Plugin

(Simple Staff List – WordPress Plugin)

Simple Staff List is free and lets you easily display basic information to visitors about your employee on your website.

The first step is to install and activate the plugin.

Log into the administration and from the admin menu, choose Plugins > Add New

(WordPress Plugins Menu – Add New)

In the Plugins area, 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 installing and activating your plugin, a new menu will show up in your WordPress menu bar called Staff Members

(Staff Members)

All of the settings for this plugin are configured and managed from this menu.

Configuring Simple Staff List

Depending on the size of your business and how you want to structure your employee directory, you could just start to add new staff member details after installing the plugin, or create different groups (i.e. categories) to place your individualmembers into.

Staff Members – Groups

To configure your groups go to your WordPress dashboard menu and choose Staff Members > Groups

(Staff Members Menu – Groups)

This takes you to the Groups settings …

(Groups screen)

Note: Adding directory groups works just like categories …

(Groups work just like categories)

Create a new group by typing in the following information:

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

(Groups settings)

If you run a business that employs many people, the ability to set up different categories can be very useful. For example, you can create a category for partners, developers, 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 organize these into a hierarchical structure …

(Nested groups)

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

To change or reassign Groups for an item, hover over a category title and click on the Edit link …

The group details will display in the Edit Group page. Select a new parent group from the Parent drop-down menu …

(Edit Group screen)

Click the Update button to save your changes …

To change your Group name or slug, hover over the group name and choose the Quick Edit menu feature …

Click the Update Group button to save your changes …

Continue adding groups to this section until you have created your directory structure …

Add as many nested categories as you like …

(Nested categories)

After you have finished setting up your groups, the next step is to begin to add names to your directory.

Staff Members – Add New

From your WP admin menu, select Staff Members > Add New

(Staff Members Menu – Add New)

The Add New Staff Member area …

(Add New Staff Member area)

This page provides you with an easy-to-use interface for adding your staff member profile 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)

Click on the Screen Options tab …

(Screen options)

You will see options to enable additional page settings …

(Enable additional fields in screen options)

Now that you know what each section does, enter each of your employee’s details …

(Staff directory settings)

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

(Groups box)

Note: If you have not set up groups before adding new staff members, you can create a group now by selecting Groups > + Add New Group

(Add a new group inside your Groups box)

A field will display allowing you to create a new group name, with a dropdown menu to assign your new entry to a parent group. Type in the name of your new directory category and click on Add New Group

Your new directory category will be created. Make sure that the checkbox is ticked …

(New group added in Groups section)

Note: Groups cannot be edited when adding or editing an employee’s details. To edit an item, go to the Groups section of the plugin’s settings (see “Groups” section above for details).


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

Click View Post

To modify the staff member’s profile, click on the Edit Staff Member link in your WP admin toolbar …

(Edit Staff Member link – WordPress admin toolbar)

We have created a detailed tutorial on using the WordPress admin toolbar here:

Note: If you get ’not found’ page errors like the one shown below, check that your site’s permalinks have been set up correctly …

(Not found error – Check your permalinks)

To learn more about setting up permalinks in WordPress, see this step-by-step tutorial:

Repeat the above process to continue adding more details to your staff or team directory.

Staff Members – All Staff Members

After entering staff details to your directory, you can view and edit details by clicking Staff Members > All Staff Members on your menu …

(Staff Members Menu – All Staff Members)

This brings up a list of all your employees and the details you have added related to each entry …

(Staff Members details list)

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

Click on Edit to edit their Staff Bio, or Quick Edit to change details such as their name, slug, group, and publish status. You can also delete a listing from the staff directory by clicking on the Trash link, or view the entry on your site by clicking View

(Edit Staff Members profile info)

If you have many names to add, your table can become unwieldy.

Use the Search Staff Members search field to find member details if required …

(Search Staff Members search feature)

The plugin also lets you specify which fields to display in this section. To hide or hide fields on your screen, click on Screen Options

(Staff Members Screen Options)

Selecting a checkbox displays the field and unchecking a box hides the field. You can also select how many staff members are shown per page. Click the Apply button when finished to update your screen options …

Staff Members – Order

The Simple Staff List plugin also features a drag-and-drop interface that lets you specify the order that entries display on your directory page.

Select Staff Members > Order in the menu …

(Staff Members – Order)

To rearrange the order of your items, click and drag the item to the desired location …

(Reorder items using drag and drop)

Your list will automatically be rearranged …

(Reordered list items)

Once you have added all of your members’ listing details to the directory, the next step is to make the directory show on your site.

Staff Members – Order

Simple Staff List also features a drag-and-drop interface that lets you set the order that entries appear on your directory page.

Click Staff Members > Order in the main admin menu …

(Staff Members Menu – Order)

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

(Reorder employee listings using drag and drop)

Your directory will automatically be rearranged …

(Reordered list entries)

Once you are done adding members’ listing details to your directory, the next step is to add the directory to your site visitors.

Simple Staff List – Additional Notes

The plugin also lets you create the style and layout of your staff list listings using template tags and CSS (Cascading Style Sheets).

Templates Menu

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

(Staff Members Menu – Templates)

This opens the Templates page …

(Customize your directory template)

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 template used for displaying listings …

(Default Simple Staff List Template)

The above code displays the listing shown below …

(Default Plugin Staff Loop Template Listing)

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

(Template tags added to Staff Loop Template)

Here is what your directory will now look like …

(Directory listings with social media URLs added)

Note: If you want to customize your directory but don’t want to mess around with editing code or are unsure of how to edit the template as shown above, please contact us for help.

Usage Menu

As well as allowing you to customize your directory templates, the Simple Staff List plugin lets you display your listings differently using modified shortcodes.

In your menu, choose Staff Members >Usage

(Staff Members Menu – Usage)

This brings up the Usage page …

(Simple Staff List shortcodes)

This screen lists all the shortcode variations that the plugin allows you to use.

For example, a useful shortcode variation you can decide to use to display a list of employees belonging only to a specific group is the shortcode [simple-staff-list group=”group name”], (e.g.:[simple-staff-list group=”sales managers”])

You can also make your listings display in ascending or descending order by inserting the shortcode [simple-staff-list order=”DESC”] (descending).

Options Menu

Click Staff Members >Options on the menu …

(Staff Members – Options)

This brings up the Options page …

(Simple Staff List – customizable options)

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

You can also export your staff members data by going to your menu and selecting Tools > Export

(Export Staff Members info)

If you need specific help with the Simple Staff List plugin, visit the plugin faq page and contact the plugin developer.

Other Employee Directory Plugins

Simple Staff List is not the only WordPress employee directory plugin you can use. For example, here are a few other free plugins you can check out for creating a staff directory on your website:

Modern Team Staff Directory

(Modern Team Staff Directory – WordPress Plugin)

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)

Learn more about the plugin here:

Staff Directory

(Staff Directory)

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

This plugin also lets you create custom fields …

(Custom Details Fields. Screenshot source: plugin website)

To learn more about the plugin go here:

Faculty And Staff Directory

(Faculty And Staff Directory – WP Staff Directory Plugin)

The Faculty And Staff Directory plugin provides a simple and flexible faculty and staff directory for a small college or university.

The plugin also installs a widget that allows you to feature a profile in a widget area.

Go here to learn more about the plugin:

Company Directory

(Company Directory – Plugin For WordPress)

With Company Directory, you can add your staff to your website. Different layouts are included, including list and single views, plus as fields like title, email address, phone number, pic and staff 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 read 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 also uses a simple shortcode system.

Learn more about this plugin here:

Employee Spotlight

(Employee Spotlight)

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 on plugin activation.

Employee Spotlight comes 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 employee can be displayed in their own page, as well as in summary …

(Responsive layout with employee circle grid. Screenshot source: Employee Spotlight website)

To learn more about the plugin go here:


(Staffer – WordPress Plugin)

This 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 online employee directory …

(Staffer archive page. Screenshot sourced from Staffer website)

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

To learn more about the plugin 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:

Hopefully, this step-by-step tutorial has helped you learn how to add an easy-to-maintain employee directory to your WordPress site.

Images used to portray sample staff members were sourced under creative commons license from pixabay.com


"These tutorials have so much information and are easy to understand. If you use WordPress or plan to in the future these will help you with everything you need to know." - Valisa (Mesa, Arizona)

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