BuddyPress 2.2 introduced a Member Type API, which allows developers to register their own unique member types, i.e. teacher, student, coach, etc. This was an exciting addition to BuddyPress but not very accessible to non-technical community managers, since it requires writing your own plugin to utilize it.
BP Member Type Generator is a new plugin from Brajesh Singh, prolific plugin author and owner of BuddyDev. The plugin makes it easy for site administrators to create and manage member types in the admin – without having to write any code.
A quick overview of its features includes:
- Create/Edit/Delete Member Types from WordPress admin
- Bulk assign member type to users from the users list screen
- A member type can be marked active/inactive from the edit member type page
- Compatible with multisite installations
When creating a new member type, administrators have the option to enable a directory that will list all members from that type on one page.
If you want to add the plugin and separate your members into different types, the task is not as overwhelming as it might sound. When you visit the user listing page in the admin, you can use the plugin’s bulk “change member type” dropdown to bulk assign users to a new member type. (This feature is also available in the Extended Profile section for each individual user in the admin.)
If you want to make the member types available for selection upon user registration, Singh created a free companion plugin called BP Xprofile Member Type Field that puts this on the frontend. If you want to restrict members from modifying their user type after registration, you can also add the free Non Editable Profile field plugin.
Please note that BP Member Type Generator cannot detect and manage other member types that have previously been added via code in a plugin. This might create some confusion if you already have existing member types. However, if you’re just starting with setting up and organizing member types, or are willing to reorganize member types, the BP Member Type Generator offers an easy way to do it.
This plugin is an important and much needed new tool that puts the creation of unique member types into the hands of BuddyPress community administrators, regardless of skill level. You can download BP Member Type Generator for free from WordPress.org. Singh does not officially support his plugins via the WordPress forums, but users can provide feedback via the BuddyDev blog or get professional support on the BuddyDev Premium Support Forums.