Kickstart Your Hybrid Copilot Journey with M365 Copilot | Blog

M365 Copilot is rapidly becoming the go-to solution for enterprises to boost employee productivity. The future lies in adopting a hybrid approach, combining buying prebuilt solutions and building custom offerings. Delve into this transformative shift and potential opportunities for enterprises and service providers in this blog.

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“Our vision is pretty straightforward. We are the Copilot company.”

— Satya Nadella, CEO Microsoft

Microsoft’s recent rollout of its Artificial Intelligence (AI)-enabled digital assistant Copilot, coupled with Nadella’s above statement, has generated much buzz in the enterprise sphere, igniting discussions about its potential impact on the IT industry and the expected employee benefits.

In the ever-evolving IT landscape, enterprises have always prioritized productivity and aim to provide digital counterparts to assist and augment employees’ day-to-day tasks.

Everest Group research found enterprises ranked productivity as a top three expectation from service providers in 2024.

Copilot marks a significant leap towards this pursuit. Next-gen technologies such as ChatGPT and Copilots are frequently interlinked with productivity gains that replace humans and lead to job loss. The human-in-the-loop concept ensures governance and accountability, representing a crucial shift toward responsible AI implementation.

Consequently, Copilots and other generative AI tools are not intended to replace humans but are built to empower them. Inevitably, this will lead to a future where “Employees with Copilots” replace “Employees without Copilots.”

Deciphering the significance of M365 Copilot: Navigating the distinction between different Copilots

Having firmly established the importance of Copilot in the IT landscape, enterprises are now left with the pivotal question of which Copilot should spearhead their transformation journey.

Within the expansive realm of the Microsoft stack alone, many out-of-the-box Copilots with distinct capabilities abound, coupled with out-of-the-box Copilots from other vendors such as Google, AWS, Moveworks, Salesforce, and more. This crowded market makes decision-making daunting for enterprises.

Let’s take a closer look at some of the available options:

Even the Microsoft stack alone has a multitude of Copilots with distinct capabilities abound:

  • Microsoft 365 Copilot: Helps users streamline knowledge management and generate content based on data from Microsoft Graph (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook) 
  • Microsoft Security Copilot: Combines AI with cybersecurity to offer users more advanced protection against attacks
  • GitHub Copilot: AI tool that helps in code completions by turning natural language prompts into coding suggestions 
  • Google Gemini: Helps users find information and generate answers from data all over the web 
  • Moveworks’ AI Copilot: Helps employees automate tasks such as enterprise search and knowledge management

M365 Copilot offers the most extensive use cases to enhance employee productivity. It also integrates seamlessly with Microsoft’s productivity suite, including Office 365, which has unparalleled market dominance with 400 million paid users. For these reasons, M365 Copilot is emerging as the leading choice for enterprises to kickstart a Copilot journey.

In two months, adoption for M365 Copilot has been faster than  E3 or E5 suites, Microsoft announced in its second quarter earnings call.  

Evidence from early adopters such as Lumen Technologies, Goodyear, Chevron, and Avanade reinforces the preference for the M365 Copilot.

Hargreaves Lansdown reported the following benefits after the implementation of M365 Copilot:

  • Employees expect to complete tasks such as client documentation four times faster and save an estimated two to three hours weekly
  • 96% of employees find Microsoft 365 Copilot useful in simplifying daily tasks

Early Copilot for Microsoft 365 users were 29% faster in a series of tasks like searching, writing, and summarizing, according to the company.

The potential for innovative service offerings is immense, presenting opportunities for enterprises and service providers alike to capitalize on the expanding Copilot market.

The exhibit below captures M365 Copilot value creation opportunities for enterprises and service providers:

For Enterprises For Service Provider
Knowledge Managament Data readiness
Document creation on Word and PPT User readiness and training
Excel data analysis and visualization Change management
Meeting summarization Proof of concept
Personalized replies on Outlook Extensibility

The way forward

While out-of-the-box Copilots like M365 Copilot hold significant value, they represent only one facet of the coin. Moving ahead, enterprises should exercise due diligence to check the alignment between the M365 Copilot offering and their employees’ needs.

Out-of-the-box Copilot such as M365 Copilot might not be a good fit for all employees due to the following reasons:

  • High price tagThe steep cost of an out-of-the-box Copilot such as M365 Copilot ($30 per user/month) may not be justifiable for every employee
  • Underutilization of Copilot offerings – While out-of-the-box Copilot, such as M365 Copilot, provides a vast array of use cases, many employees may not utilize them all. Instead, a tailor-made Copilot might be an ideal fit
  • Limited customization – Custom built Copilots offer more personalization
  • Limited integration with custom business apps – Integrating Copilots with custom business apps and data is restricted
  • Less control in Copilot roadmap development – Clients have less control over future development when buying than building a solution

Adopting a hybrid Copilot strategy that combines out-of-the-box (Buy) Copilot(s) and tailor-made (Build) Copilot(s) based on unique employee and business needs is the ideal solution.

While starting with Buy Copilot(s) is effective initially, this is a suboptimal strategy in the long run. Ideally, the future of enterprise Copilot strategy should move beyond buy versus build and, instead, toward a hybrid Copilot strategy.

The next blog in this series will explore the hybrid Copilot strategy in detail. To discuss your Copilot journey or for help on a Copilot strategy, please reach out to [email protected] and [email protected].

Watch the webinar, The Generative AI Odyssey: A Year in Review and What’s Ahead in 2024, to learn about actual production-level use cases and get a glimpse into the future of this transformative technology.

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