Monoliths vs Microservices is Missing the Point—Start with Team Cognitive Load

The “monoliths vs microservices” debate often focuses on technological aspects, ignoring strategy and team dynamics. Instead of technology, smart-thinking organizations are beginning with team cognitive load as the guiding principle for modern software. In this talk, we explain how and why, illustrated by real case studies.

Matthew Skelton has been building, deploying, and operating commercial software systems since 1998. Head of Consulting at Conflux (, he specialises in Continuous Delivery and operability for software in manufacturing, ecommerce, and online services, including cloud, IoT, and embedded software.

Matthew curates the well-known DevOps team topologies patterns at and is co-author of the books Continuous Delivery with Windows and .NET (O’Reilly, 2016) and Team Guide to Software Operability (Skelton Thatcher Publications, 2016). He is also co-founder at Skelton Thatcher Publications (, a specialist publisher of techniques for software teams.

Matthew founded and leads the 2300-member London Continuous Delivery meetup group (, and instigated the first conference in Europe dedicated to Continuous Delivery, PIPELINE Conference ( He also leads the CodeMill digital skills initiative in the North of England (, and is a Chartered Engineer (CEng).

Manuel Pais is an independent IT consultant and trainer, focused on team interactions, delivery practices, and accelerating flow. Manuel is co-author of the book ""Team Topologies: Organizing Business and Technology Teams for Fast Flow"" (IT Revolution Press, 2019). He helps organizations rethink their approach to software delivery, operations and support via strategic assessments, practical workshops, and coaching.


Matthew Skelton

Author, Team Topologies


Manuel Pais

Author, Team Topologies