Extend AI in Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations with Copilot Studio

By Scott Frappier | May 2, 2024

Using AI in Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations is easy, as Microsoft Copilot is built-in to all of Microsoft's cloud-based solutions for those with premium and enterprise-level licenses.

However, rapid advancements in AI-powered technologies are happening every day. That's why it's important to stay on top of innovations to ensure you are using the AI capabilities at your fingertips to automate tasks and increase efficiency.

That's where Microsoft Copilot Studio comes in. While the built-in Copilot capabilities will help you boost productivity, you can further take advantage of Microsoft's new AI tools with Copilot Studio. Let's look at how to use Copilot Studio in Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations.

AI in Dynamics 365: Built-in Copilot VS. Copilot Studio

Understanding the difference between the built-in Copilot and Copilot Studio technologies requires a grasp of their respective functionalities and integration within Dynamics 365.

Built-in Copilot: Seamlessly Integrated AI Assistance

Built-in Copilot integrates AI assistance within Dynamics 365 platforms, enhancing user experience and workflow efficiency without requiring additional licenses. This streamlined approach ensures accessibility and immediate integration into daily operations.

Additionally, when labeled as "IN" within Dynamics 365 solutions, it encompasses the built-in Copilot capabilities with native AI functions in the platform. This empowers users with AI-driven assistance and features within their existing D365 environment.

Copilot Studio: Advanced AI Interactions and Customization

Conversely, Copilot Studio offers a more comprehensive environment for advanced AI interactions and customization. It caters to users seeking advanced AI capabilities and develops tailored solutions to meet specific needs. In this case, it is designated as "FOR" within a Dynamics 365 product listing. This refers to Copilot Studio, a separate service requiring additional licenses for specialized functionalities beyond native Dynamics 365 offerings.

Note that the current Copilot for Finance and Operations App refers to Copilot Studio, not the built-in Copilot.

Built-In Copilot Limitations for AI in Dynamics 365

To access the built-in Copilot technology, log into your environment and enable the Copilot functionality within the app. This feature is conveniently located in the top right corner of the interface. By clicking on the Copilot capabilities, users can access the familiar Copilot pane, allowing for interactive queries and assistance.

AI for Dynamics 365 Copilot

While the built-in Copilot functionality offers immediate access to AI assistance, it has some limitations. For instance, the user experience differs from the Copilot pane in Microsoft Office applications. Although direct queries against an Azure open AI infrastructure are feasible, the integration into Excel or Word documents is not ready due to security considerations.

Copilot Studio offers solutions to these limitations, providing users with enhanced customization and integration capabilities.

Expanding AI in Dynamics 365 with Copilot Studio

In Copilot Studio, users can customize their Copilot experience to suit specific needs. They can create Copilots to assist them in areas such as website integration and chatbot creation. The versatility of Copilot Studio's adaptable logic applies both internally and externally. This lets you integrate Copilot Studio with various platforms.

AI for Dynamics 365 Copilot Studio capabilities

Additionally, Copilot Studio offers a low-code, no-code environment, ensuring accessibility for users of all skill levels to create powerful conversational AI solutions.

Analyzing AI in Dynamics 365 Scenarios with Copilot Studio

Now let’s walk through some scenarios using Copilot Studio for Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations to highlight its versatility and potential. From customizing your experience to generating dynamic summaries of sales orders, we'll demonstrate how organizations can enhance efficiency and productivity with Copilot Studio. We will also detail some existing limitations.

Customize the Copilot Experience

Through Copilot Studio, users can customize their Copilot experience to suit specific needs. Let's use the sales order processing and inquiry module as an example. Users can leverage Copilot Studio to summarize customer data and contract details. By asking Copilot Studio to summarize key aspects, users can quickly access relevant information such as:

  • Account receivable balances
  • Top customer contributions
  • Open contracts
  • Delivery details
  • Contract values.

This feature streamlines data analysis and facilitates informed decision-making.


Here are some limitations in this area:

  • Copilot Studio primarily relies on knowledge-based articles and does not directly query Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations data by default. The platform currently focuses on summarization capabilities rather than direct action implementation.
  • While Copilot Studio offers powerful summarization capabilities, direct actions such as creating alerts require further exploration and configuration.
  • Integration of Copilot Studio capabilities into external platforms or documents, similar to Microsoft Office applications, is not yet realized due to security considerations and technical limitations.

Implementing Actions with Copilot Studio

Copilot Studio excels in data summarization and empowers you to take direct actions within Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations. Users can create alerts for specific events or conditions, enhancing proactive decision-making and workflow automation.

By instructing Copilot Studio to create an alert for a particular customer, you can receive notifications when relevant events occur. This functionality streamlines communication and ensures timely responses to critical events.


While Copilot Studio offers action implementation capabilities, you may encounter limitations, including:

  • Configuration and setup requirements may vary depending on the desired action, potentially requiring additional expertise or resources.
  • Copilot Studio's action capabilities may be limited to specific scenarios or use cases, requiring further exploration to determine suitability for broader applications.

Configuring Copilot Studio for Enhanced Interactions

You can define various topics and trigger phrases in Copilot Studio. This enables the system to intercept user prompts effectively.

Copilot Studio also allows you to use conditional logic and topic pathing, ensuring a dynamic and context-aware conversational flow. With Copilot Studio, organizations can tailor the experience to align with specific business requirements and user preferences.

Copilot for Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations topics

Copilot for Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations trigger


Users may encounter a learning curve when configuring complex topic paths and conditional logic, requiring familiarity with the platform's capabilities:

  • Achieving consistency in copilot responses may require iterative refinement of prompts and topic configurations to align with user expectations.
  • Copilot Studio's flexibility may lead to variability in user experiences if not managed effectively, necessitating ongoing monitoring and adjustments.

Exploring Contextual Interactions with Copilot Studio

A critical aspect of leveraging Copilot Studio within Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations is understanding the context of user interactions. With the "Show Context" feature, users can explore the contextual limitations and capabilities of Copilot Studio.

By querying the system to identify the current form or record being accessed, you gain insight into the information available to Copilot for processing.

AI for Dynamics 365 user context


Copilot Studio's inability to access detailed record information directly from D365 limits its capacity to perform contextually aware actions. This gap highlights the need for improved integration between Dynamics 365 and Copilot Studio to enable seamless data transfer and interaction. Here are two key limitations:

  • Relaying unique record identifiers to Copilot for data retrieval and interaction poses a significant challenge due to current integration constraints.
  • The lack of seamless data transfer between D365 and Copilot Studio hampers the system's ability to provide accurate and contextually relevant responses to user queries.

Customizing Copilot Capabilities for Enhanced Interactions

One of the key features of Copilot Studio is its adaptability to user-defined queries and actions. By customizing Copilot's capabilities, you can tailor your conversational experience within Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations to suit specific business needs.

For instance, users can create new topics to trigger responses based on predefined phrases or questions. Defining trigger phrases and associated actions lets users prompt Copilot to provide relevant information or perform specific tasks. This includes but is not limited to summarizing sales order data or answering questions about vendors.


Despite the flexibility of Copilot Studio, it currently lacks the same capabilities as the bot or Copilot in other Dynamics 365 applications like Sales. This discrepancy becomes apparent when creating new topics or actions within Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations.

The current limitations of Copilot Studio in Finance and Operations include the inability to support rich context controls, such as buttons and interactive elements, within Adaptive cards. This limitation restricts the functionality of custom Copilot capabilities and necessitates reliance on text-based responses instead of interactive prompts.

AI for Dynamics 365 Adaptive Card Node properties

AI for Dynamics 365 Adaptive Cards

Adaptive Card

Generating Dynamic Summaries for Sales Orders

The advanced capabilities of Copilot Studio allow you to generate dynamic summaries for sales orders and interact with data.

Follow these steps to do that:

1. Start the summarization process by prompting Copilot with a specific command, such as "summarize this sales order."

Copilot will then prompt the user for additional information, such as the sales order number. This multi-step interaction allows for tailored responses based on your inputs.

AI for Dynamics 365 Summary request

2. Once you provide the information, Copilot engages with Power Automate to retrieve the sales order record associated with the number.

Power Automate will retrieve the relevant data and return it to Copilot for further processing.

AI for Dynamics 365 Action

3. The sales order record is then passed through a series of actions within Power Automate to generate a comprehensive summary.

These actions may include:

  • Text processing using GPT prompts or;
  • Other AI capabilities to distill key insights from the sales order data.

Power Automate flow

4. Finally, the summarized information returns to Copilot, which presents it to the user in a structured format.

This summary may include payment method, payment terms, and other information from the sales order record.


The current integration with Power Automate may not support all desired functionalities. If you use this feature, establish careful configuration and testing processes.

Despite the existing limitations, it's crucial to recognize that AI technologies like Copilot are continuously evolving and advancing. The ongoing enhancements enable you to achieve more with less effort, automating and optimizing business processes. This underscores the power of Copilot Studio in boosting productivity within D365 Finance and Operations.

Protect Your Data When Using AI in Dynamics 365

One final and important note is to be mindful of potential data privacy and security concerns when implementing Copilot or Copilot Studio. You might use workflows that contain sensitive information, and it's vital to ensure that information doesn't go out to people who shouldn't see it. Ensure you have a strong and well-thought-out security strategy to avoid this pitfall.

Stoneridge Software can help you set up proper controls and data handling practices to help you mitigate this risk.

Want to Learn More About Copilot Studio and AI in Dynamics 365?

Get in touch with our team! We can help you harness the full potential of AI and discover how Copilot Studio can enhance your Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations environment.

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