How will the Microsoft and OpenAI partnership affect Microsoft partners?

Microsoft is investing $10 billion in ChatGPT creator OpenAI. Whilst this strengthens Microsoft’s position in the AI space, it will also impact their Microsoft Partner Network. Here’s how.

William Sale
6 MIN|February 7, 2023
OpenAI logo with blog title 'How will the Microsoft and OpenAI partnership affect Microsoft partners?'

Microsoft is investing further billions into OpenAI, extending its partnership with the innovative startup behind ChatGPT, GPT-3 and DALL-E 2. With some estimating the investment to be around $10 billion, this is a major step forwards for Microsoft in dominating the AI space.

'$10 billion' on an orange patterned background

But there’s more to the partnership expansion than marketplace control. The breaking news of Microsoft launching the new Bing with ChatGPT built in shows it will have a lasting impact on Microsoft’s product line-up, the Microsoft Partner Network, and more.

What’s in the Microsoft and OpenAI partnership?

Microsoft will accelerate OpenAI’s independent AI research by investing in the development and deployment of specialised supercomputing systems. Plus, Microsoft will roll out OpenAI’s models across their products to bring new digital experiences for users.

Microsoft Azure OpenAI Services will play a prominent role here, enabling developers to create AI applications using OpenAI models. But this level of investment is going to touch many more of Microsoft’s apps.

How will OpenAI affect Microsoft products and services?

Microsoft is famed for its business tools. Outlook, Teams, SharePoint, Office, PowerApps, etc., are often the go-to for organisations of all sizes.

With the investment in OpenAI, we’re looking at Artificial Intelligence taking a major step into the mainstream. This is big. Your mother will be using AI to plan her holiday next year. But more importantly your team will be using the prospect of in-built AI in Microsoft products to sell your services. And so, you should get prepared now.

An Excel sheet that can fill itself on command with no formulae. Document generation in Word with the click of a button. Imagine how easy that sounds to sell? You’re selling your prospective customers actual time, the greatest resource there is. It sounds like a fun time to be in the Microsoft ecosystem.

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Understanding how AI benefits your audience and the tools they use to complete a process is how you can sell the delights of a souped-up Microsoft suite of solutions and gain a competitive edge over your competition.

Let’s take a closer look at how Microsoft might use OpenAI to improve their products and make your sales team’s job easier:

The future of SharePoint with AI

The collaborative platform connects an organisation’s workforce together, building tighter networks of collaboration and content management. When GPT-3 and ChatGPT integrate with the platform, there will be opportunities for SharePoint to create enhanced experiences for all.

3 data graphic icons on a light orange background to illustrate Microsoft Sharepoint.

For IT administrators, developers, managers and more, SharePoint has its challenges. But OpenAI’s tools will bring greater efficiency to online collaboration. Here’s how they might be able to help:

  • Build elaborate file listing systems quickly – Efficient online collaboration and content management rests on a comprehensive yet simple filing system. This can take time for SharePoint administrators to build. Not for ChatGPT. Ask it to create listing fields in JSON or PowerShell and it’s there in seconds. This reduces a very time-consuming and mundane task.
  • Generate intranet pages in a few clicks – Intranet pages carry best practices, policies, forms, social events calendars and more. But all this needs to be managed, monitored and updated by HR. Creating new pages etc can be a lengthy process. And while intranet templates exist, GPT-3 can generate a more efficient template with a few commands. Then ChatGPT takes care of the text. Simply type in “write text for summer party announcement”, for example, then you have a foundation to work with.
  • Create detailed project workflows with ease – Tracking projects, KPIs, deadlines and more needs robust monitoring from account and project managers. While SharePoint has project management tools as part of its offering, GPT-3 and ChatGPT can speed up the creation of detailed plan that covers every aspect of a project’s shelf life.
  • Find and extract meaningful data – New employees spend their first days learning about the best practices embedded in their new workplace. And while the intranet can be a reliable resource, ChatGPT can be better. As part of SharePoint, it will answer questions like “What’s the CSR policy?”, “What’s the hybrid working policy?”, etc. Also, employees will be able to ask questions “How long has XXX been a client?”, “What project is XXX working on?”, “Is the Microsoft project in budget?” etc.

The future of Teams with AI

Microsoft Teams sits at the heart of many organizations’ communication strategy. It is very much the norm for inter-departmental communication and collaboration in the hybrid (and non-hybrid) workplace.

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But there are aspects of Teams that can be quicker and better. Here’s how OpenAI’s tools may be able to help:

  • Summarise documents immediately – For C-level executives, time is a precious commodity. They don’t have hours to put into reading reports. But ChatGPT does. It can summarise the key points on files sent over Teams so the C-level executive can have the most vital nuggets of info without pouring over a 30-page document.
  • Extract key points from video call transcripts – Teams meetings has become a big part of most knowledge workers’ everyday. And in a world of hybrid working, the volume of Teams meetings has risen. Whether it’s through fatigue or scheduling conflicts, sometimes essential information from meetings is missed. ChatGPT can summarise a meeting, extracting the key points so all key stakeholders have the info they need to make faster, better decisions.
  • Update project plans instantly – If info from video call transcripts can be summarised as key points, then it can be automatically extracted and updated elsewhere around your business. When stakeholders are having a chat or call on a project and enter crucial details into the Teams chat, ChatGPT can automatically update the project plan or timeline. This saves everyone so much time and ensures all parties involved have the same info in one place.

The future of PowerApps with AI

Microsoft PowerApps has transformed how Organisations roll out apps for employees and customers. But how will the Microsoft and OpenAI investment change PowerApps?

Robot with a speech bubble that reads 'Happy Friday!'.

Well, GPT-3 is already used within PowerApps, so the real change will come from ChatGPT. Here’s potentially how:

  • Build comprehensive and accessible apps in less time – Developing apps is a protracted process. And while PowerApps has already cut the time significantly, it’s not perfect. With ChatGPT thrown into the mix too, refining code building blocks becomes even simpler. This means more sophisticated, yet accessible apps can be developed. This speed will touch many industries and their departments. From HR’s onboarding app to logistics’ inspection app, sales’ intake forms, IT admins’ new users...the possibilities are endless.
  • Read complex formulas to train developers – Some PowerApps developers have already found that ChatGPT can help them to improve their coding skills and read complex formulas. For organisations, ChatGPT can help their developers refine their skillset and grow to create more complex apps that meet the requirements of their customers.

How you can take advantage

The changes (whatever they end up being) that will take place across these tools will leave a significant impression on Microsoft’s partners too.

With AI adding plenty of value into the Microsoft toolkit, you have much to look forward to. And so do your customers.

Marketing and selling to customers

Overall, the Microsoft and OpenAI investment will mean that, over time, you will be able to offer upgraded solutions that deliver even greater efficiency for your customers. But there’s more to it than that.

SharePoint, Teams, the Power Platform and more have the potential to be transformed. And it will create a whole lot of benefits for you when selling to your leads.

Standing out in a competitive landscape

Microsoft will no doubt be at the forefront of AI after their monumental investment. But it won’t be long before Google and Amazon join the fight. However, if Microsoft uses this technology in the right way, then they should continue to dominate the enterprise space for a long time. Good news for businesses that run on Microsoft.

OpenAI is a gamechanger and will likely remain at the centre of the AI landscape for some time. Any organisation that has OpenAI’s capabilities integrated into their offering is one that will remain at the forefront too. From Microsoft to you, to your customers.

Ready for the future of AI in Microsoft...?

You need a marketing partner that understands the evolving landscape, how to adapt and how to sell the benefits of the Microsoft and OpenAI investment to your customers.


At Fifty Five and Five, we work with many Microsoft partners to craft compelling marketing campaigns that deliver results.


If you’re ready to reap the benefits of the Microsoft and OpenAI partnership, and want to stand out in a crowded market, then let’s talk!