Copilots galore!

There are currently 160 Copilots across the entire Microsoft ecosystem for Windows, Dynamics 365, Microsoft 365, and more.

For this blog, we’re mainly talking about Microsoft 365 Copilot, which is integrated into Microsoft 365 Apps like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Teams, Outlook and more. It delivers enterprise-grade security, privacy, and compliance to ensure all data processing happens inside Microsoft 365. This version includes Microsoft 365 Chat, which scans your entire universe of data (from emails to meetings, chats to documents, and everything on the web) to help you solve problems at work.

Microsoft 365 Copilot is currently limited to enterprise customers who can apply for access through their direct Microsoft representative. The good news is that Copilot will become available to all Microsoft 365 customers (license dependent) next year.  

It's all about productivity

Revolutionise is an overused word. Much like transformation.

So that makes it difficult when you finally find something that will make as significant a difference to business productivity as Copilot. But let’s look at two of the real-world ‘stars-of-the-show’ examples so you can judge for yourself:

First, Copilot for Power Automate.

Now, if you thought Power Automate (previously Microsoft Flow) was brilliant - but at times complicated - for creating automated workflows, just imagine it on Copilot steroids. Power Automate requires you to work like a developer would with code – and code is something that Copilot loves! For example, ask it (in natural language) to build a workflow where receiving an email creates a record in Dynamics 365 – and within minutes, it will truly build that flow in front of you. Copilot will ask you to authorise the connections, and presto – it’s done. And it won’t allow you to do anything you don’t have the authority to do.

You can add iterations – like specifying that it only creates a record if there’s a particular word (for example: urgent!) in the email subject – and that step will be added in. For anyone used to using Power Automate, it’s a game-changer, as is the latest V3 designer for Copilot.

To put this in a productivity context, pre-Copilot, we would have started this workflow with a diagram or scoping out what needs to happen and a blank canvas. From then, each step would need to be manually created - one at a time. Pre-Copilot, this workflow would have taken 20-100 steps – with Copilot - about three. Time saved? 40% to 60% time saving on average.

Next, another shining example of Copilot productivity: Teams Premium Copilot.

With Copilot sitting in on your meetings, it can create a transcript, review it, and then provide a recap for attendees or those who couldn’t make the meeting.

The recap covers what was discussed, who was mentioned, topics covered, and any tasks assigned for follow-up. And the user can even drill down into the recap for more detail or context. It also creates auto-chapters based on the discussion points covered during the meeting.

While it may be hard to quantify the time savings, it’s obvious that Copilot fulfils the role of a highly organised and competent PA combined with a court reporter. The productivity gains of being presented with a concise, accurate and action-orientated meeting recap are significant. 

But wait, there's more

One of the biggest Copilot productivity gains will be in the Business Apps spaces inside Dynamics 365 Sales and Marketing.

Copilot can turn a task like opening a customer email in Outlook inside of Dynamics 365 or Outlook into simplicity itself. Copilot will go into Dynamics 365 and look at previous engagements with the client, assess the relationship, and provide your salesperson with a draft email answer, including any special offers they are eligible for.

The salesperson can also go into a customer’s account in Dynamics 365 and ask Copilot to accurately summarise all their activity in the last few months or weeks – something that usually requires every note and record to be read – and is fairly time-consuming. Time saved? According to one client, it has transformed 20 minutes of hard work into 15-20 seconds.

Copilot and our customers

While customers in New Zealand and Australia don’t currently have access to all Copilots due to regional dependencies, we’ve been using it for their projects. As a development partner, Copilot allows us to add more value to what we do – reducing the development time needed and improving accuracy. So, it’s an all-around win-win.

Once commercially available to all, we expect to see our customers delight in what they can do and how quickly they can do it.

No free lunches needed

At Microsoft Ignite 2023; Microsoft's annual conference; it was no surprise that Copilot was the glamour girl of the event.

Jared Spataro, Corporate Vice President, Modern Work & Business Applications at Microsoft, presented research on how Copilot is impacting user productivity in real, everyday terms:

  • 75% spent less time searching for information in their files
  • 71% saved time on mundane tasks
  • 29% found they were faster on specific tasks
  • 70% more productive
  • 68% improved the quality of their work
  • 64% spent less time processing email

Additionally, Copilot users said they:

  • Were 3.8x faster at catching up on missed meetings
  • Saved 10+ hours per month

But what was most telling of all was that 77% said they’d choose Copilot over having a free lunch.

What's next?

Microsoft has around 165 further Copilots on the drawing board already, and users will be able to use them to design their own Copilots (something we are already doing at Fusion5).

While it will undoubtedly take a little time for users to find their feet (nowhere as much time as you’d imagine, though), the productivity and quality gains will be significant for those who use practically any Microsoft Solution – from Dynamics 365 to PowerPoint and Excel to Power Platform. And those who have been held back by a lack of coding skills will be able to cross from one solution or platform to the next with ease.

All you will need to do is articulate your vision.

Great outcomes start with great conversations


Great outcomes start with great conversations

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