We IT bods hate dealing with users so anything to put them at arms length!
It was a failry common trick, I think most of us have done this at some point in the past. I remember doing this around 1994. Trying to get people out of the way during the busines day so you could issue updates was a major PITA, so you simply put new editions on network shares when they started it up it would, update itself in the background and then reset. I put "kill switches" in some apps, the app would check once an hour if a flagfile was on the network, if so then it would wait until 11pm, quietly save everything and shut down. Then when the user started it up again it would update itself.