Simple Staff Portal for WordPress Site

Simple Staff Portal for WordPress Site

Create private posts & pages for team members

Wouldn’t it be great to be able to setup staff-only pages on your website? You could use these pages to share meeting notes, policy updates, upcoming events, etc. Only your staff and volunteers would have access and you could restrict access based on whether they need to create and add new content or view and download only.

All you need is a free WordPress plugin and the 2 setup steps below to create a portal on your site where staff and volunteers only can login to access organizational documents and stay updated on internal communication. Let’s get started.

Staff-Only Content

Step 1: Create a new WordPress user

The first step is to set the staff member up as a new WordPress user on your site.

  • From your site’s dashboard, go to Users >> Add New.
  • Create a new test user account assigned to the subscriber role for now.
  • Your test staff member can now login to your website.

WordPress User Roles

By default WordPress comes with more than one user role. These roles control how much access your users have on your site. They include:

Subscriber: Subscriber level users have read-only access to pages and posts on the site. This role is typically used for membership sites that require the user to register and login in order to access certain content. The content must also be restricted to logged in users only. This way, the content is not visible to the public, but when members login, they have access to the restricted content.

Author: Authors can create, edit, delete, and publish their own posts. They can also upload media files. If you want your staff or volunteers to be able to upload or add new content, the author role can be very useful.

Admin: Admins have full access to the site, they can create, edit, publish & delete any content on the site, install themes & plugins, and much more. It is generally a good idea to limit the number of users with admin access to your site.

Step 2: Limit access to WordPress pages

Next let’s create some staff-only content. This is content that you do not want to be viewable by either your members or the general public.

  • Go to Plugins >> Add New.
  • Search for & install the Members plugin by Justin Tadlock.
    • The Members plugin adds a restrict content feature to every page and post.
Members Plugin by Justin Tadlock
install from Plugins page
  • For each page and post on your site, you can now select which types of users have access.
    (NOTE: If you do not select a role, the page will be viewable by anyone visiting your site.)
  • Next create a new page that will have content for staff eyes only.
  • Go to Pages >> Add New.
  • Create a page called ‘Staff Portal’.
  • Scroll down to restrict the page to ‘subscribers’.
  • Be sure to ‘publish’ your page.

The page will not be visible to the general public, but when your staff (subscriber level users) login, they will be able to see this content.

Test your setup

  • Copy the URL of your ‘Staff Portal’ page.
  • Log all the way out of your site.
  • Go to the front-end of your site and go to the ‘Staff Portal’ page.
  • You should see a ‘sorry no access’ message. (To update this message, go to Settings >> Members.)
  • Login to the site as your test user, return to the ‘Staff Portal’ page to view staff-only content.

You can now use this page as a central portal for staff and volunteers to access organizational documents, forms, schedules, policy updates, resources and tools, etc.

Members-Only Content

Separating staff access from member access

If you are using the Chamber Dashboard Member Manager plugin with the Business Directory plugin, new members are automatically registered as subscriber level users on your website when they join. In this case, you will want to use a different WordPress user role for staff in order to create members-only content that is separate from staff-only content.

If you have content that you want to be accessible to staff, but not to members, you can assign staff to one of the other WordPress user roles, for example, the author role. Then update your staff-only pages to restrict access to author level users.

Now content restricted to subscriber level users will be accessible by members-only and content restricted to author level users will be accessible by staff-only.

update on Users page

Note: It is possible to assign multiple user roles to content if you want staff to have access to member content for example.

If you have the Member Updater plugin activated with the Member Manager and Business Directory plugins, when new members join, they are automatically assigned the user role of ‘Business Editor‘. This role is unique to the Chamber Dashboard plugins. Members assigned to this role can login and edit their own Business listing.

If all of your members are assigned the Business Editor role, you would be able to use the subscriber level to create staff-only content.

Restrict content access by membership level

Both the Member Manager and Member Manager Pro plugins give you the option to further restrict access to content based on the membership level of the Business that the user is connected to.

NOTE: The user’s WordPress role is not affected by the user’s Chamber Dashboard membership level.

To restrict access to content based on Chamber Dashboard membership level, you will need to enable the Chamber Dashboard members-only feature. Once the members-only feature has been enabled, you will have the option to select which membership levels will have access to each page and post on your site.

Note: It is possible to assign multiple membership levels to content, for example if wanted to set up content for board member access only, but your board members had joined at different membership levels.