• Do you need a copy of your husband’s passport?
  • Where do you find your medical insurance policy number?
  • Who was that great plumber you used a few years ago?
  • What is your financial advisor’s contact information?

When you need this type of information, you usually need it quickly and urgently. That is why having a centralised information bank for important household information can be incredibly useful.

What is a Family Handbook?

An electronic handbook is made up of documents and folders that you can access at any time, from anywhere. It is something that we have successfully helped many of our clients implement into their lives, and they have never looked back.

We call it a Family Handbook, and it stores all of the important details and documents related to your household and makes them available in one easy-to-find place. There is a master Excel spreadsheet with useful information like policy numbers, key contact information and the like, and we keep building on this document as your need for it grows. There is also usually a Dropbox folder where copies of important documents like passports and IDs are kept.

Why is it Useful?

For Family: Having a centralised information bank for household matters can also save time – especially if multiple family members often need access to this type of information.

You no longer have to worry about rummaging through drawers and cupboards trying to find what you need or calling people at awkward times of day looking for contact information. Neither spouse needs to hassle the other for information; if you choose, even the kids can find whatever they need at the click of a button. Everything is organised in a single, accessible but secure online location and ready for use whenever needed.

For your VPA: Having a centralised Family Handbook that is managed by your Virtual Personal Assistant (VPA) has proved incredibly useful to our clients.

It is a way to give your VPA access to all the tools they need so that they can provide you with the best, most convenient, and most efficient service. All the crucial personal information you’d like them to have in order to make your life easier is easily available, without you having to think of every detail or share it with them multiple times. With all the important details just a few clicks away, they will be able to help you more quickly and efficiently.

With a single repository of all relevant documents, everyone can access what they need quickly and without panic. You no longer have to worry about misplacing important documents or having confidential personal details leaked.

But Is It Safe?

Having a centralised online Family Handbook is convenient but can set you up for potential danger if you’re not strict with security. It’s critical to ensure that all your data is stored securely, and this can be done, so long as you are using the right tools.

We make use of Google Docs and Dropbox.

Google Docs is one of the most secure document creation and sharing services available today. It uses multiple layers of security protocols to protect your data, including password protection, encryption, two-step verification, access control settings and more.
Your documents are stored on Google’s secure servers and backed up regularly in case you accidentally delete them or lose them due to a technical issue. Additionally, all transmitted data is encrypted with SSL/TLS protocols to prevent anyone from intercepting it while it’s being moved between your device and Google’s servers.

All this ensures that only those who have been granted permission can access your documents and even then, they can’t edit or make any permanent changes without your knowledge. So, when using Google Docs for sensitive documents like personal information, you can rest assured that your data is safe and secure.

Google Docs also has a variety of other features designed to make it even more difficult for malicious actors to access your documents. For instance, if someone attempts to log in with incorrect credentials multiple times, they will be locked out temporarily. Plus, activity logs show who has accessed or edited the document so you always know who made changes or viewed it.

Dropbox also has a number of other security features to further protect your personal information. Personal data is encrypted during transit and at rest, using AES-256 encryption. It has two-factor authentication and single sign-on, which means you have to access your account with a password, plus another form of authentication. Dropbox also has a secure infrastructure with regular security patches and real-time threat detection.

These sophisticated security measures actually make these tools some of the most secure online document creation and sharing services available today. And no need to worry about losing the passwords as your VPA can hang onto all that information for you.

In Summary

Over the years, we have seen time and time again, that investing in a centralised household handbook can save time and provide peace of mind – two very valuable commodities!

Our Virtual Personal Assistants at Bauhinia are experts at ensuring that all the information is kept up-to-date and secure.

Try it out and we are confident that you will never look back.

If you’re overwhelmed, struggling to get things done, or recognise you need some assistance, book a discovery call to discuss your personal support needs.

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