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Copilot in Power Platform – Build solutions at rapid pace with Microsoft Power Platform and next generation AI

June 1, 2023

by Ram Kiran Patro & Vikas CR, Innova Microsoft CoE


Chat GPT and Open AI are among the most talked about tech topics today. This next-generation AI when combined with Microsoft Power Platform, is providing both a new way for developers to solve business problems and a new way for end users to use AI in the flow of their work to be more productive. A large language model like GPT has garnered significant attention for its remarkable capabilities. Low-code technology has seen significant adoption by most enterprises over traditional development models and has emerged as a game changer.

The introduction of Copilot into the Microsoft Power Platform demonstrates the power of large language models where the evolution is clearly seen from custom code to low code, to natural language authoring. Copilot has made significant advances for Power Apps, Power Automate and Power Virtual Agents. This blog aims to cover the A to Z of Copilot in Microsoft Power Platform, if you’re new to this technology or trying to understand how it changes the paradigm of Power Platform, then this article is for you.

Copilot in Power Apps:

Microsoft Power Platform has been on a journey to empower all developers with AI-powered development experiences since 2021. A report published by Microsoft pointed out, “Power Apps was one of the first products to use GPT in commercial capacity, and express design in Power Apps has enabled makers to automatically turn their drawings, images and Figma documents into app user interfaces (UIs).”

With a few conversations in natural language, Copilot can build an application with all the code needed for the UI along with Data Tables and backend logic. It can also recommend Improvements to your App. As a maker, all you need to do is describe your App requirements in simple natural language prompts like below:

  • “Create an App for time and expense tracking and approval”.
  • “Build an app to Onboard a new customer and share welcome email and instructions”.
  • “Generate an App for Loan request and approval process”.

Copilot will also be able to create multi-screen applications through natural language conversation and design and update beautiful user interfaces. Here are just a few examples of natural language prompts:

  • “Add a screen where users can submit and rank their favourite ideas from my existing screen templates.”
  • “Add a button to my page that allows them to sort their data.”
  • “Center all buttons in their containers and turn them orange”.

 

This empowers professional developers to focus on solving complex business problems. Additionally, professional developers can use it to help App Users with intelligent insights based on the data collected by the App through a series of conversational chat like below:

 

  • “How many high-priority tickets were created last month?”
    • “What is the breakdown of the current status for the tickets that were created last month?”
    • “Which types of tickets are most overdue?”

 

  • “What type of Loan is often requested”.
    • “Who approves most loans in a quarter”.

 

With AI Virtual Agents integrated into Power Apps, App makers can directly add bots to their Apps to support user queries.

Copilot in Power Automate:

Power Automate boosts efficiency and automates tedious business processes. Copilot in Power Automate allows users to automate business processes with simple natural language conversation to generate Power Automate flows, irrespective of the complexity of the requirements. Also, Copilot can optimize and update the process by simply answering a few questions through an easy-to-use user interface. This next-generation AI based Copilot in Power Automate will sit right inside of the flow studio and help with every flow that’s being built or changed.

GPT model also enables users to generate text content on the Power Automate Desktop. The new Azure Open AI service in AI Builder can now be used in Power Automate Desktop enabling makers to use a new low-code generative AI model and templates in Power Automate cloud flows.

Copilot in Power Virtual Agents:

Integrating chatbots has been a proven solution for enhancing customer experience. However, building a chatbot is time-consuming and can take months. The Power Virtual intuitive user interface has transformed this by building conversational dialogue that shortens the development cycle to weeks.

With Copilot in Power Virtual Agent, user can build intelligent chatbots in no time using natural language. It enables topic creation using natural language processing, including suggestions on relevant trigger phrases, questions, entities, messages, variables, and other logic models.

Additionally, generative AI conversation boosters in Power Virtual Agents allow bots to chat over your intranet site or multiple knowledge bases (of the company or enterprise) like external sites, internal SharePoint sites or a combination of these using just a URL. When a user query doesn’t trigger a manually created topic, Power Virtual Agents searches for relevant information over an externally configured source (for example, knowledge base, intranet, etc). This enables Bots to instantly answer hundreds of “out of the box” user queries by conversing over the specified content.

Now Bot maker can simply expose their tenant APIs, enterprise-specific Microsoft Power Automate flows, or other actions to the bot to use in conversation.

The bot understands the user’s request, looks through its library of actions, and identifies the ones that can fulfil the request. It then self-assembles and chains them together and even generates questions for the user for any additional information it needs to complete the request.

Copilot in Power Pages:

Power Pages help organizations to build well-designed, customizable, and secure business websites. Next-generation AI enhancements via Copilot in Power Pages, will revolutionize web development process to launch data-centric business websites. It can Generate text, build detailed forms and chatbots all in a matter of minute with simple natural language input.

Copilot in Power Pages simplifies form building process, Maker’s now just need to specify the form type, and Copilot will auto-generate tables in Microsoft Dataverse, create the corresponding forms. It also has the flexibility to adjust, add, or fine-tune fields using natural language input.

Power Pages empowers site admins with the integration of Copilot chatbot activation. They can add a Power Virtual Agents chatbot with generative answers via a simplified experience within the setup workspace, streamlining the website management process.

Makers can trigger a Power Automate cloud flow from web page events. The cloud flows can integrate with external applications or automate their processes by utilizing more than 1,000 prebuilt and custom connectors available in Microsoft Power Platform.

These new Power Pages AI capabilities, low-code innovations, and sophisticated tooling to aid developers will help your business accelerate development, increasing your efficiency and speed of creating websites that scale.

Summary:

Low-code development platforms like Power Platform, combined with embedded generative AI, is revolutionizing the way solutions are built and fundamentally transforms the way people work, collaborate, and create.

Gartner forecasts Worldwide Low-Code Development Technologies Market to Grow by 20% in 2023. It also predicts that, by 2025, 70% of new applications developed by enterprises will use low-code or no-code technologies, up from less than 25% in 2020. Microsoft, with its low-code Power Platform service offering, has been recognised as a leader in 2023 Gartner® Magic Quadrant™ for Enterprise Low-Code Application Platform report for the fourth consecutive time.

As more businesses adopt low-code development platforms like Power Platform, Copilot, enhances and enables rapid innovation and limitless growth. If you are thinking of adopting low code as a mainstream tool in your organization, then it’s time to put aside all the apprehensions and get into action.

In conclusion, low code solutions like Power Platform should not be considered an alternative over traditional development models, instead, they should be mandated for adoption immediately.

We at Innova Solutions can partner with you to evaluate your business processes and start to reimagine what they may look like with the augmentation of Copilot’s generative capabilities.

Interested in knowing more? Get in touch with us.

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