It is increasingly acknowledged that generating value from IT requires strategic and operational IT business alignment. But it remains difficult to give concrete suggestions on what drives alignment in day-to-day business. Thorough process documentation might enable cross-departmental transparency and thereby serve as antecedent of operational alignment. We suggest that business process documentation is a straightforward and actionable antecedent of operational IT business alignment. Using data from 200 US and German banks it is shown that indeed documentation strongly drives operational alignment, but surprisingly only in US banks. The implications and avenues for further research on operational alignment are discussed.