AI continues to grow in popularity for both personal and professional use. Microsoft 365 Copilot is a relatively new AI tool that can be used with many of the major Microsoft applications to drive business and productivity within the workplace. Let’s dive deeper into what Microsoft 365 Copilot is and how exactly it can be used within the major Microsoft applications.
What is Microsoft 365 Copilot?
Copilot combines the power of large language models (LLMs) with data in the Microsoft Graph to “turn your words into the most powerful productivity tool on the planet.” The intention of Copilot is to free up excess time spent on mundane tasks that eat up creative energy and prevent you from driving innovation forward.
Copilot integrates with Microsoft 365 in two ways – it works alongside you in the Microsoft 365 apps you use daily, and also can be used in Business Chat, but we will elaborate on this further below. With Copilot, you can be more creative in Word, more analytical in Excel, more expressive in PowerPoint, more productive in Outlook, and more collaborative in Teams.
Microsoft 365 Copilot for Word
Microsoft 365 Copilot can be used in Microsoft Word to write, edit, create, and summarize. It can use information from across the organization to add content to existing documents, rewrite and edit sections or even entire documents, create first drafts based on a brief prompt, create hyperlinks, provide improved writing suggestions, and more.
Some examples of prompts you can give Copilot include:
- Draft a two-page project proposal based on data from document A and spreadsheet A
- Make the third paragraph more concise and change the tone of the document to be more casual
- Create a one-page draft based on this rough outline
Microsoft 365 Copilot for Excel
Microsoft 365 Copilot can be used in Microsoft Excel to help analyze and explore data. It works alongside you to ask questions about your data in a natural way, creating formulas, revealing correlations, identifying trends, providing what if scenarios, and creating powerful digitalizations. Copilot can also provide recommendations for driving different outcomes based on analysis of existing data.
Some examples of prompts include:
- Provide a breakdown of sales by type and channel and display it in a table format
- Project the impact of changing X variable and generate a chart to help visualize the differences
- Model how a change in the growth rate of variable X would impact the gross margin
Microsoft 365 Copilot for PowerPoint
Microsoft 365 Copilot can be used in Microsoft Excel to turn ideas into presentations. With Copilot, you can turn existing written documents into complete slide decks with sources, start new presentations by providing a simple prompt or outline, condense lengthy presentations with the click of a button, and use natural language commands to adjust layouts and reformat text.
Some examples of commands include:
- Create a five-slide presentation based on this word document and include relevant stock photos
- Consolidate this presentation into a three-slide summary
- Reformat these three bullets into three columns each with a picture
- Turn this flowchart into a deck with X number of slides and include meeting notes as key points
Microsoft 365 Copilot for Outlook
In Outlook, Copilot works with you inside your inbox to help you spend less time on prioritizing emails and more time on simple communication. Copilot can pull from other emails and content across M365 to help summarize long convoluted email threads, respond to existing emails with a simple prompt, adjust the tone or length of an email, and turn quick notes into professional messages.
Some commands you can try with Copilot in Outlook include:
- Summarize the emails I missed while I was out last week and flag any important items that I need to respond to
- Draft a response thanking this person and ask for more details about the second and third points they mentioned
- Shorten this draft and make the tone more professional
- Invite everyone to a ‘Lunch and Learn’ being held next Thursday at noon about new product launches and mention that lunch will be provided
Microsoft 365 Copilot for Teams
Copilot in Teams takes the work out of working together by helping you run more effective meetings, summarizing key actions, organizing key discussion points, catching you up on what you missed without interrupting the discussion flow, and more. By adding Copilot to meetings, you can ask it to create meeting agendas based on chat history, identify the right people for follow-ups, schedule the next check-in, and take notes for you so you can focus on the actual discussion without worrying about writing everything down.
Some prompts include:
- Summarize what I missed in the meeting, what points have been made so far, and what disagreements we’re having
- Create a table of pros and cons for this topic being discussed and what we should consider before making a decision
- Summarize what decisions were made and provide suggested next steps
- Create meeting notes
Copilot can work alongside you in the Microsoft 365 suite to simplify your day-to-day processes and help you work more efficiently by leaving you time to focus on more important tasks.
The Use of Microsoft 365 Copilot in Business Chat
In addition to working with you in Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Teams, Copilot can also be accessed through Business Chat, a new way to increase productivity output. With Business Chat, you can ask questions in a chat window, and Copilot will use the Microsoft Graph to bring together data from different sources, including documents, presentations, emails, calendar notes, and contacts, to answer your question.
Similar to AI tools like ChatGPT, Copilot will be able to answer your questions in a chat window in Microsoft Teams so you can get answers in one place without having to open the various applications.
Some commands you can use in Business Chat include:
- Summarize chats, emails, and documents about X customer’s escalation that happened last night
- Tell me about the next milestone on project X, whether there are any risks identified, and how to mitigate these risks
- Write a new planning overview in the style of file A that contains the planning timeline from file B and incorporates the project list in the email from person X
Business Chat is an even simpler way to integrate and get assistance from Copilot in the Microsoft 365 suite and can help you boost productivity within your organization further.
Let Klarinet Help You Make the Most of Copilot
Not only is Copilot a powerful artificial intelligence tool that you can leverage for Microsoft 365, it is also expanding further, with the launch of Copilot for Dynamics CRM, and Copilot for Security and Copilot for Power Platform on the horizon.
Since Microsoft 365 Copilot is a relatively new product, we expect to receive more information in the coming months. At Klarinet, we stay up-to-date with all things Microsoft and can work with you to help you decide if and how to incorporate Microsoft 365 Copilot as part of your digital workplace environment.