Current understandings and practices for developing and sustaining organisational capacity are informed by research advocating strategic and structural forms of alignment. The current research proposes the exploration of a third dimension – a cognitive aspect - that deserves consideration in addition to strategic and structural conceptualisations. To this end, a theoretical framework, which provides insight into the underpinning processes for the emergence of organisational cognisance, is constructed based on the research findings. Organisational cognisance is the core concept that enlightens a cognitive dimension to the concept of organisational alignment. The relationship between organisational cognisance and capacity building in organisations is captured with a second conceptual model, which highlights the significance of the emergence of organisational cognisance for enhancing personal capacity, interpersonal capacity and professional capacity.