Getting Started with Microsoft Copilot: Your Guide to Maximising Efficiency and Productivity

In modern work environments, productivity is an ever-present challenge. Businesses and workers are constantly seeking tools to streamline their workflows and speed up tasks. We are pleased to present Copilot, Microsoft’s newest generative AI project. The Copilot project was recently launched in January 2024, and as proud Microsoft Partners, we at AWD can help your business begin its Microsoft Copilot journey. As a managed service provider, we can help you unlock the tool and develop strategies to improve productivity and creativity.

1.      Familiarise Yourself with Microsoft Copilot’s Capabilities:

Before diving into the practical aspects of using Copilot, it’s essential to understand what this assistant technology can do for you. Copilot is an integrated generative AI assistant (co-pilot) that is directly integrated into Microsoft Office & 365 applications. This includes programs such as Word, Excel, Outlook, Power Point, etc. Whether it’s generating code snippets, drafting emails, or formatting documents, Copilot is designed to make your work easier and more efficient.

According to Microsoft, the platform “combines the power of large language models (LLMs) with your data in the Microsoft Graph and the Microsoft 365 apps.”

This assistant technology aims to radically transform how users interact with the Microsoft Office suite. Users can provide prompts for the platform to respond to in a chatbot based setting. The AI will then draft a response or series of responses for the user to select from.

This style may sound familiar to users of Chat-GPT. This is because Microsoft Copilot is built on the GPT-4 large language model. Copilot’s chatbot is currently available for free when searching on Bing and using the Ai powered Bing chat. Additionally, it is available for people using Windows 11. However, users will need to pay to unlock all of the platform’s features, including the Office 365 integration.

2.      Set Up Copilot in Your Microsoft Office Suite

Getting started with Microsoft Copilot is a straightforward process, but it’s essential to ensure that it’s properly integrated into your Microsoft Office environment to maximise its effectiveness. Make sure your tech is up to date by checking for any pending updates or patches for your Office applications before proceeding with Copilot installation.

Before using Microsoft Copilot with your Microsoft Office suite, ensure your system meets these key specifications:

  • Operating System: Compatible with Windows 10 and later versions.
  • Office Application: Works best with Office 365 or Microsoft 365.
  • Internet Connectivity: Requires a stable internet connection.
  • Hardware: Ensure your system meets minimum hardware specs for smooth performance.
  • Software Compatibility: Check compatibility with existing add-ins or extensions.

Begin by navigating to the settings or add-ons section of your Office application, where you’ll typically find options to manage extensions and add-ons. Look for the option to install or activate Copilot, depending on your subscription plan or licensing agreement. If Copilot is not already included, you may need to download it from the Microsoft Store or another authorised source. Follow the on-screen prompts to complete the installation process, making sure to review any permissions or settings that may affect Copilot’s functionality. Once installed, restart your Office application to apply the changes, and you’ll be ready to start leveraging Copilot’s intelligent suggestions and automation features in your daily workflow. Don’t forget to periodically check for updates to ensure that you’re always using the latest version of Copilot with access to the newest features and improvements.

3.      Embrace Copilot’s Suggestions

As you start using Copilot, it’s important to keep an open mind and embrace its suggestions.

While you may initially feel hesitant to rely on AI for assistance, remember that Copilot is designed to augment your capabilities, not replace them. Pay attention to the suggestions Copilot provides and evaluate their relevance to your current task. Over time, you’ll learn to trust Copilot’s insights and leverage them to accomplish tasks more efficiently.

4.      Customise Copilot to Suit Your Workflow

One of the great features of Copilot is its ability to adapt to your individual workflow preferences. Take the time to explore Copilot’s settings and customisation options to tailor its suggestions to your specific needs. You can adjust the frequency of prompts, specify the types of tasks you want Copilot to assist with, and fine-tune its language and coding preferences. By personalising Copilot to align with your workflow, you’ll maximise its effectiveness and seamlessly integrate it into your daily routine.

5.      Continuously Learn and Improve

Like any tool, mastering Microsoft Copilot requires practice and continuous learning.
Deepen your understanding of Copilot’s capabilities and learn new tips and tricks for optimising your workflow. Experiment with different workflows and techniques, and don’t be afraid to explore beyond your comfort zone. The more you use Copilot, the more proficient you’ll become, unlocking new levels of productivity and efficiency in your work.

How Can a Managed Service Provider Assist with Copilot Setup?

A managed service provider (MSP) can play a crucial role in assisting a business in getting started with Copilot. Firstly, an MSP can provide guidance and expertise in evaluating whether Copilot is suitable for the business’s specific development needs and workflows. They can offer insights into the integration process, helping to seamlessly incorporate Copilot into existing development environments and tools. Partnering with an MSP can streamline the adoption and implementation of Copilot, enabling you to harness the full potential of this innovative technology in your endeavours.

Are You Seeking a Personalised Solution from a Managed Service Provider?

As a managed service provider, AWD can provide a guidance to your business on the implementation of Copilot into your organisation. As IT consultants, and Microsoft partners, we are well equipped to provide your business with tailored integration solutions.

We invite you to book a free consultation with one of our consultants to enquire about how we can help you maximise your productivity and potential with Microsoft Copilot.

Enquire about our IT services today.