We answered all your questions about Microsoft 365 Copilot

Here is everything you need to know about Microsoft 365 Copilot. This blog is based on FAQ, but we also cover how to use this tool in the different Microsoft 365 applications.

This blog has been updated on 17/01/2024.

Table of Contents

What is Microsoft 365 Copilot?

According to the Microsoft definition, “Copilot combines the power of large language models (LLMs) with your data in the Microsoft Graph—your calendar, emails, chats, documents, meetings, and more—and the Microsoft 365 apps to turn your words into the most powerful productivity tool on the planet. And it does so within our existing commitments to data security and privacy in the enterprise“.

A bit of a mouthful don’t you think? Well in simple terms, Microsoft 365 Copilot is an AI chatbot assistant that brings generative AI into the Microsoft 365 apps like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Microsoft Teams, and Outlook – and combines it with the Microsoft Graph (where all your interactions and documents are stored). It’s an AI-powered tool that works as an additional productivity layer for all your applications.

Here are a few examples of what you can do with Microsoft Copilot:

  • Generate a PowerPoint presentation from a Word document
  • Obtain an instant and insightful analysis of your Excel data
  • Request a summary of recent emails about a specific customer
  • Create a first draft document in Word based on a prompt
  • Quickly answer routine emails in Outlook
  • Build an application to automate a manual process with Power Apps

You can find more specific examples in the ‘How to use Copilot in [application]’ sections below.

How does Microsoft Copilot work and what does it do?

The Microsoft 365 Copilot system combines three technologies:

  1. Microsoft 365 applications (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Teams, etc.)
  2. Microsoft Graph and all your organisation’s content and context in it
  3. The GPT-4 Large Language Model (LLM) that parses, understands, and creates human-readable text

Similar to other AI chatbots like Bing and ChatGPT, you need to enter a prompt, and then Copilot will automatically generate the document or a response depending on your instruction.

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How to set up Copilot?

Microsoft 365 Copilot is not yet available to us. At the time of writing, Microsoft is conducting a limited technical preview of Copilot, which is only available to a small group of organisations. Microsoft has not yet announced when Copilot will be available to the general public, but it is likely that they will release it gradually as it continues to refine the technology and gather feedback from early adopters. Sign up to the Intelogy updates, we will keep you up to date.

When will Microsoft Copilot become available? When will it launch?

Updated December 2023: Microsoft Copilot for Microsoft 365 is generally available for enterprise customers since November 1, 2023. For educational staff, it is available from January 1, 2024. However, for Microsoft 365 Personal and Family subscribers, the release date is scheduled “in the future.” Early Access to Copilot is available through an invitation-only Early Access Program for preselected Microsoft 365 subscribers.

What is the minimum requirement for Copilot licences?

On January 15th, 2024 Microsoft announced that Copilot for Microsoft 365 is now available for organisations of all sizes for the $30 per user per month pricing. This means that the previously introduced 300-seat minimum purchase for Copilot for Microsoft 365 commercial plans has been removed, making Copilot accessible to Office 365 E3 and E5 customers.

Small organisations can now access Copilot for Microsoft 365 through Microsoft 365 Business Premium and Business Standard.

How to use Microsoft 365 Copilot in Word?

Copilot in Word enables users to draft and generate content for them, summarise text and even revise it. But watch the video below to see the real magic happen when you prompt it to draft a document based on your own meeting notes or another existing document. How cool is that?

Without any doubt, this will become the most frequent use of this tool.

Here are some example commands and prompts you can try:

  • Draft a project proposal based on the data from [a document] and [a spreadsheet].
  • Make the first paragraph more concise. Change the tone of the document to be more casual.
  • Create a one-page summary based on this rough outline.

Here is a short Microsoft 365 Copilot in Word demo:

How to use Microsoft 365 Copilot in Excel?

You can use Copilot in Excel to analyse your data and get insights, but you to create visualisations of your data through simple prompts. For example, you can ask Copilot to create a summary of your datasheet and find any trends. If a user has more specific questions about the data, Copilot can create a new sheet to explain it in more detail.

Here are some example commands and prompts you can try:

  • Give a breakdown of the revenue by type and channel. Insert a table and pie chart to visualise.
  • Project the impact of [a variable change] and generate a chart.
  • Model how a change to the growth rate for [variable] would impact my gross margin over the next two quarters.

Here is a short Microsoft 365 Copilot in Excel demo:

How to use Microsoft 365 Copilot in PowerPoint?

With Copilot for PowerPoint, you can transform anything into a beautiful presentation. You can use your own idea or existing documents to create a prompt. Finding the generated presentation too long, too short, too wordy, want more images? Copilot can make any changes you need and even add animation.

Come on, ‘turn this proposal into a client-facing presentation’? Doesn’t that sound like a dream?

Here are some example commands and prompts you can try:

  • Create a seven-slide presentation based on [document] and include relevant images.
  • Consolidate this presentation into a three-slide summary.
  • Reformat the third slide to be less wordy and more visual.

Here is a short Microsoft 365 Copilot in PowerPoint demo:

How to use Microsoft 365 Copilot in OneNote?

Yes, there will also be a Copilot injection for OneNote and it’s doing everything we could have hoped for. Copilot within OneNote can create notes based on existing documents, organise text, and retrieve information, with capabilities that include text reformatting and note summarisation, as well as highlighting key information.

How to use Microsoft 365 Copilot in Microsoft Teams?

Copilot for Microsoft Teams will be able to take meeting notes for you and create summaries for absentees. You will also be able to request a list of the key decisions that were made during the call.

During a Microsoft Teams call, you can ask Copilot how attendees are feeling about a subject matter and if everything on the agenda was covered.

Here are example commands and prompts you can try:

  • Summarise what I missed in the meeting. What points have been made so far?
  • Create a table of pros and cons for [topic being discussed].
  • What decisions were made?

Here is a short Microsoft 365 Copilot in Microsoft Teams demo:

How to use Microsoft 365 Copilot in Outlook?

You just came back from a long break, you open your inbox and BOOM! Countless unread emails are awaiting a reply. Copilot for Outlook can help you cut through the noise, catchup quickly and prioritise.

It can help you summarise long emails or long email threads whilst highlighting action points and it shouldn’t come as a surprise at this point that it can also help you draft emails based on existing documents. Just provide Copilot with the necessary context, and it will take care of the rest.

Here are some example commands and prompts you can try:

  • I was out last week. Flag any important items.
  • Draft a response thanking them, and asking for more details about their second and third points; shorten this draft and make the tone professional.
  • Invite everyone to a “lunch and learn” about new product launches next Wednesday at noon. Mention that lunch is provided and that we will host everyone at our head quarters.

Here is a short Microsoft 365 Copilot in Outlook demo:

How to use Microsoft 365 Copilot in Power Platform?

Copilot can help developers quickly prototype and iterate on their low-code applications. It can assist anyone, regardless of their skill level, in automating repetitive tasks, building chatbots, and turning app concepts into viable products in a matter of minutes. GitHub data shows that Copilot significantly improves productivity, with 88% of developers reporting an increase in productivity, 74% reporting an increase in focus on enjoyable work, and 77% reporting a reduction in time spent searching for knowledge or examples. Find out more.

How to use Microsoft Security Copilot?

Security Copilot can help organisations uncover, investigate, and respond to cyber security threats in minutes. You can use the prompt bar to ask for a summary of all your vulnerabilities for example.

All the prompts and responses generated by Copilot are saved so you can always go back into any investigation, see what the prompt was and the response. This audit trail is immutable. You can also pin responses to the dashboard to make it easier to share important findings.

Here is a short Microsoft 365 Copilot Security demo:

Microsoft Copilot for SharePoint – Announcement May 2, 2023

Today Microsoft announced it is bringing the power of next-generation AI to SharePoint with Microsoft 365 Copilot. We can already guess what this means, Copilot in SharePoint will help users turn content into beautifully curated SharePoint pages with minimal effort.

We can all agree that today’s announcement is the biggest leap Microsoft has taken in the 22-year history of SharePoint. Microsoft Copilot in SharePoint will undoubtedly raise user experience whilst also lowering the entry barrier by making authoring simpler.

How to use Microsoft Copilot in SharePoint?

Directly within SharePoint, users will be able to call upon Copilot by simply requesting a site for a specific purpose, based on existing content. Take a look at the short demo video below to see how it works. You can make edits to the colour theme just through a prompt, including your own branding guidelines and available visuals.

Microsoft Syntex plugins for Microsoft 365 Copilot – How does it work?

At Microsoft Build 2023, Microsoft announced Syntex plugins for Microsoft 365 Copilot. Syntex brings AI-powered document processing like classification, content assembly and eSignature to Copilot and essentially, it makes your content ready for Copilot. Through these plugins, you can ask Copilot questions about specific content, for example, whether or not there is sensitive data in a document. You will even be able to request new documents to be created based on templates and specific data sources for example proposals.

Based on extracted metadata you can also use Copilot to filter documents, e.g., show me all the files with the following PO number or any documents with a quote over £10K.

Microsoft also announced that you will be able to request electronic signatures through Copilot with the Syntex plugins.

Is Microsoft Copilot free? /  Pricing & Licensing

No Microsoft Copilot is not free for organisations. On July 18th 2023, Microsoft announced that Copilot will be available to customers for $30 per user per month for Microsoft 365 E3, E5, Business Standard and Business Premium customers. There is however no more seat minimum requirement.

Looking to change your Microsoft 365 subscription? We are an Official Microsoft Licensing provider, so don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Will Copilot for Power Apps replace developers?

A message that Microsoft has been keen to express when announcing Microsoft Copilot, and which the use of the phrase “Copilot” intends to portray, is that the introduction of new, AI-augmented functionality is to empower developers working in the Power Platform. The true strength of this tooling will be to automate the creation and configuration of assets that can be clearly detailed and explained, such as Tables in Microsoft Dataverse. Developers will still be required to oversee and verify these outputs, as well as express their requirements in clear, descriptive prompts, but may redistribute the time saved on not needing to build out more basic assets towards more complex or specific implementations.

Copilot for Power Apps should also reduce the barrier for entry for newer developers, or those who may have an understanding of data and design concepts more generally but are unfamiliar with the specific ways to realise these concepts in a Power Apps context.
If anything, this tool will potentially make the developer’s job more productive as they could delegate the elementary tasks.

Microsoft Copilot alternatives?

Microsoft Copilot works natively with Microsoft 365 applications so there aren’t any alternatives to this tool. However, that’s not to say there aren’t any other AI assistants that you can use to achieve productivity gains, for example, ChatGPT is already available to you as an AI generative tool.

Fundamentally, Microsoft 365 Copilot is more than just a chat bot as it combines the power of AI with your Microsoft 365 apps and your business data.

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Margarita Ausheva
I am a forward thinking, motivated, passionate and driven marketing executive. I always strive to do things smarter and better as I oversee execution of marketing strategies.
Published On: April 14th, 2023 Categories: Teamwork & Employee Experience, Uncategorised

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