Microsoft Copilot
Microsoft has announced Copilot for Finance AI tool, which streamlines finance tasks. Wikimedia Commons

Microsoft has unveiled its newest Copilot offering dubbed Copilot for Finance. The tool is designed to streamline everyday tasks for finance professionals.

It is worth noting that Microsoft hasn't launched Copilot for Finance as a standalone AI model. Instead, the Redmond-based tech giant has expanded its existing Copilot for Microsoft 365 suite, bringing specialised features tailored to streamline financial operations.

In a blog post announcing the new AI tool, Charles Lamanna, CVP of Business Applications and Platform at Microsoft, touted Copilot for Finance as a way to empower finance departments to focus on strategic tasks and dedicate their expertise to strategic initiatives that drive business growth.

Citing data shared by a CFO magazine survey, Microsoft noted that a whopping 62 per cent of finance professionals struggle when it comes to finding time for strategic tasks due to the "drudgery of data entry and review cycles". This is where Copilot for Finance comes into the picture.

Copilot's AI in action: Automating tasks, gaining insights

Microsoft says Copilot for Finance is capable of automating a slew of time-consuming financial tasks. The AI-powered tool can effortlessly perform tasks such as conducting a variance analysis in Excel using natural language prompts, data reconciliation with automated structure comparisons, generating customer account summaries and transforming raw data into insightful visuals and reports.

Ideally, a company has different groups of employees performing specialised work. "We want every one of the departments to be enabled and enriched with a Copilot," Lamanna said in an interview with CNBC in San Francisco on Wednesday.

The recently unveiled Copilot for Finance tool joins Copilot for Sales and Copilot for Service. As the name suggests, the Copilot for Sales tool can generate sales meeting briefs, add leads, update CRM records and perform other analysis and generative tasks.

Copilot for Service, on the other hand, is aimed at people-facing roles. It is capable of generating AI-powered conversations with a single click. Moreover, this tool can access knowledge about customers from other systems, draft emails, recap meetings and more. These tools are generally available to Microsoft 365 customers.

In addition to unveiling the enterprise-focused Copilot for Finance tool, Microsoft has been announcing several Windows 11 updates that will turn Copilot for Windows into an ultimate productivity booster for daily users. Further improving Copilot integration in Windows 11, Microsoft began rolling out Copilot actions and animations for Windows 11 users earlier this month.