Generative answers with Search and summarize the content with Power Virtual Agents

In a previous article, I discussed the possibility of using generated answers as a fallback when creating a bot; however, this feature can also be applied to a specific topic.

This can be accomplished by utilizing various internal and external information sources, such as:

External sources:

  • Bing Search

  • Bing Custom Search

Internal resources:

  • SharePoint

  • OneDrive for Business

Custom data (internal or external):

Provide your content from any source, like a Power Automate Flow, a Skill, or another source.

You can also incorporate information sources into a topic using the "Generative Answers" node. This node enables you to designate sources the node will search, depending on your inputs. The search outcomes will be condensed and assessed for data reliability.

Create generative answers

The Generative Answers node lets you incorporate generative answers into your bot's topic. This feature allows you to search both internal and external information sources at the node level, enhancing your bot's conversations.

  1. Open the authoring canvas for your topic, and pinpoint the location where you would like to incorporate generative answers.

  2. Under the Advanced menu, add a Generative Answers node.

    Screenshot of adding a Search and summarize content node.

  3. On the Generative answers node, select Edit under Data sources.

    Screenshot of the Search and summarize content node properties.

  4. Specify the data sources you'd like the node to use, and add them to your list. This adds the source to the node's set of resources.

    Screenshot of the Generative answers node data sources menu.

  5. Once you have finished inputting sources, close the menu.

  6. Within the properties in your node, you can select to post the node output as a message or save it in a variable.

  7. When saving it to a variable, you can pick up the content of it with, e.g., PowerFX or Power Automate Flow.

The topic will now generate answers based on the information sources provided to the node.


In conclusion, incorporating generative answers in a bot's topic enhances its conversational capabilities by utilizing various internal and external information sources. This feature allows the bot to provide more relevant and reliable information, improving user experience and satisfaction.

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