This means, that alignment must be realized, not only horizontally, but also vertically.One definition on these two types of organizational alignment – vertical and horizontal – is found in [Kathuria et al, 2007].This is called an attempt to transform the concept of alignment into a practical method, incorporating both management and design components.
According to a recent publication of Abcouwer and Goense, this model is often used in a different and wrong way. This model enables discussions on the topic of business and IT alignment, but it doesn’t provide information on how organisations can actually improve the way they cooperate. W., Maes, R., Truijens, J.: The Strategic Alignment Model (SAM) of Henderson and Venkatraman  is widely used as the base of Business/IT Alignment theories.
The key message of this model, as well as that of many other studies, is that to become a successfull company, one should make sure that the IT strategy is fully aligned with business strategy.
Managers may face ambiguity surrounding the differences between espoused strategies, strategies in use, and managerial actions, many of which may be in conflict with one another [Chan and Reich, 2007].
Critics of Strategic planning and alignment maintain that the implicit dominance of a structured strategy process is questionable in an era where uncertainty and flexibility predominate and the articulation of the strategic intent is difficult (Ciborra,1997 in Avison et al, 2004).
Good alignment alone is not enough, and even worse, can distract the IT department from a high IT performance. Another interesting view can be found in the work of Hinssen [Hinssen, 2009].
He sees Alignment as a model to optimize existing relationships, but it will not help in establishing an optimal relationship between business and IT.
References Avison, David, and Jones, Jill, and Powell, Philip, and Wilson, David: The next model, I like to introduce is the Amsterdam Information Model (AIM), also known as the so-called 9-cells-framework (in dutch: negenvlaksmodel).
This model was developed by Maes, Truijens and Abcouwer.
Based on findings from their literature review they state: Critics of Business/IT-Alignment research argue that in the world of work, alignment does not succeed because strategy is not a clear concept due to various turbulent, unpredictable circumstances that leave managers muddling through, betting and tinkering with their corporate strategies. One of the challenges Chan and Reich see, is that Corporate Strategy is unknown, unclear or difficult to adapt.