Extend Microsoft Copilot for Microsoft 365

As a developer, you can extend, enrich, and customize Microsoft Copilot for Microsoft 365 for the unique way your customers work.

On its own, Copilot for Microsoft 365 is a powerful productivity tool for keeping users in the flow of their work across Microsoft 365 applications. It provides users with general skills such as understanding, summarizing, predicting, recalling, translating, and generating content. It draws from a baseline of your organizational knowledge by indexing content in the Microsoft Graph, such as the emails, chats and documents that users have permission to access.

Visual representation of the Copilot for Microsoft 365 system: Foundational models (LLMs) + Microsoft Graph (your data) + Microsoft 365 and 3rd party apps

However, business workflows don't typically run exclusively on Microsoft 365 applications and data formats. With Copilot extensibility, you can augment Copilot for Microsoft 365 with custom skills and organizational knowledge specific to your enterprise and users to enable truly spectacular AI scenarios. You can extend Copilot's skills by transforming your app into a plugin that increases user productivity across daily tasks and workflows. You can enrich the organizational knowledge accessible to Copilot by ingesting your enterprise data and content with Microsoft Graph connectors.


  • Plugins for Microsoft Copilot for Microsoft 365 are in public preview and only work in Copilot chat in Microsoft Teams.
  • The capability is enabled by default in all Microsoft 365 Copilot licensed tenants. Admins can disable this functionality on a user and group basis and control how individual plugins are approved for use, and which plugins are enabled. For details see: Manage Plugins for Copilot in Integrated Apps.

What can you do to extend Microsoft Copilot?

Chart with organizational 'Knowledge' as the x-axis and user 'Skills' as the y-axis showing that you can extend Copilot skills with plugins and extend Copilot knowledge with Graph connectors

  • Adding knowledge - You can enrich the organizational knowledge accessible to Copilot by ingesting your enterprise data and content with Microsoft Graph connectors.
  • Adding skills - You can extend Copilot's actionable knowledge by transforming your apps into plugins that increase user productivity across daily tasks and workflows.
  • Enhancing overall experience (Preview) - With combining extra data sources that contain specific domain knowledge in a declarative copilot that includes instructions to guide the user through the workflow and match intents. Declarative copilots can seamlessly integrate with plugins and connectors.

Extend Copilot for your scenario

Copilot extensibility helps your collaborative workspace to be more productive by bringing key information, common tools, and trusted processes to where people increasingly gather, learn, and work. Create something brand new for Copilot or integrate an existing app.

Here are some practical examples of what you can develop for your organization:

  • Issue tracking for engineering team

    Take for example an engineering team that relies on project management software. You can build a custom tool that enables users to monitor open tickets. For instance, a user can request information on all issues assigned to them, and Copilot for Microsoft 365 can seamlessly retrieve and present this data from your plugin.

This illustration shows a plugin scenario where an engineer asks to show all open tickets for him

  • Product inventory for E-commerce

    If your business operates in the realm of commerce, you can build an internal inventory tool by connecting it to your product database. For example, a user can ask Copilot to verify the availability of specific items, streamlining your internal processes.

  • Enterprise knowledge sharing

    Consider a multinational corporation with a wealth of knowledge and insights stored in various formats, including documents, emails, and chat transcripts, that are spread across multiple systems. Microsoft Graph connectors can facilitate the consolidation of this data, making it searchable from a single, unified interface. This ensures that your organization's collective wisdom is readily accessible.

Types of extensibility

There are several ways you can extend Copilot for Microsoft 365.

This illustration shows types of extensibility options, Graph connector, plugins, and declarative copilots

Microsoft Graph connectors

Graph connectors increase the discoverability and engagement of your enterprise data by deeply integrating your data into the Copilot for Microsoft 365 experience. With Graph connectors, you can:

  • Make the most of your external data by giving Copilot the ability to access and summarize your diverse datasets from different sources, enabling more comprehensive insights
  • Use Copilot as a research aid, letting Copilot find, summarize, and perform Q&A natively by leveraging the dataset of your choice
  • Surface the intelligence of Copilot in Microsoft Search, ContextIQ, and more to enhance the ways your users are already searching for answers

There are three main steps to set up a Graph connector: (1) Create a connection, (2) Register your schema, and then (3) Ingest your content to the Microsoft Graph. Each item is sent with properties that match the schema you registered to power your content as discoverable in the Microsoft 365 (Office) app. Learn more about how Graph connectors work in Copilot and best practices for configuration.

There are two distinct extension interfaces for Microsoft Copilot for end-users— one is declarative copilots, and another is plugins that connect APIs. For user, as an analogy, you can view Microsoft Copilot as something like an operating system, where plugins are services and declarative copilots are apps!

Declarative copilots (Preview)

Copilots with declarative instructions act as a standalone custom version of the Copilot for Microsoft 365 chat experience. Declarative copilots provide you with more tailoring, tuning, and control of the user experience. Declarative copilots have:

  • Familiar user interface with Copilot for Microsoft 365
  • Domain-specific knowledge applied for specific tasks, such as travel planner or nutrition assistant
  • Ability to integrate with plugins and connectors to call specialized services and access domain expertise


Plugins expand your users' skills by interacting with your web service using natural language in Microsoft Copilot. With plugins, you can:

  • Access real-time information such as finding the latest news coverage on a product launch
  • Retrieve relational data such as reporting on service tickets assigned to a given team member
  • Perform actions across apps such as creating a new task in your organization's work tracking system

The main differences between these extensions and Graph connectors are how the data is consumed. Data from a Graph connector requires prior ingestion to the Copilot semantic index; extensions fetch and act upon data in real-time.

Illustration showing how plugins and connectors interact with Copilot and Microsoft 365 data

Next step

Learn more about the two main paths for AI-driven business transformation: extending Copilot for Microsoft 365 and building custom AI solutions from the ground up.

If you're ready to extend Copilot for Microsoft 365, learn more about your extensibility options.