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Hot desking is a workplace sharing approach where a single computer is used by multiple individuals. It is an economical way of allocating computers to workers and specifically useful for organizational environments where there is low computer usage time per person.
Hot desking is also known as location independent working.
A popular workplace trend during the late 1980s through the mid-1990s, hot desking was implemented in organizations where employees worked remotely, in an office during limited hours - or both. In hot desking scenarios, one computer was assigned to multiple individuals, allowing a machine to be used for a brief period of time, typically to check email, update sales data or perform other small tasks. Each individual would log into a system with a unique ID and log off when work was completed. Thus, several workers were able to use a system during office hours and different shifts.
In current trends, hot desking can be achieved through virtualization, where a single computer hosts several virtual machines, each designated by employee.