NEWS16 February 2018

Obituary: Steve Taylor

News People UK

Steve Taylor, managing director of market research data analysis and collection company We Work With Data, died at home on Sunday 20th January 2018.

Steve was born in 1969 and grew up in South London. A talented musician, Steve was also highly gifted in data analysis, collection and processing, and had a lifetime of experience in the market research industry. He was renowned for his innovative and creative approach, and the warmth of his personality. He began his career with Digitab (now Taylor Nelson’s specialist data bureaux) in 1987. Since then, he has worked for several different specialist analysis bureaux and market research agencies, focusing particularly on media, readership and online studies.

He was elected to the committee of the Association for Survey Computing (ASC), a body that unites specialists from commercial, educational and governmental research, in 2003. He later became vice-chairman of the organisation, hosting a conference at Imperial College in April 2006 on presentation and dissemination techniques and more recently, chairing a Q&A session with some of the leading lights of the market research software industry, and delivering a paper at the 2016 conference.

Steve set up his own consultancy, Inputech, in 2009. After over 250 projects, he founded We Work With Data (or w3dL), a Folkestone-based company specialising in complex data processing and analysis, market research technology, data visualisation and software development. Steve had a very clear vision for w3dL, which reflected his personality, passion for data and desire to build an approachable, innovative organisation. Over the eight years w3dL has been in existence, the company has worked with many kinds of companies of organisations, helping them make sense of data and understand the insights they deliver.  

In 2015, w3dL secured the support of Kent County Council to fund expansion. Moving in to 2018, Steve was working on bringing new people into the business, creating jobs for the local community and continuing to develop w3dL and his visions for working with data and people. He was particularly excited about bringing a fresh eye to data visualisation and delivery for end users.

Steve will be hugely missed, both as an expert in his field, and as a friend. Adrian Golder-Hayes, senior research consultant at w3dL, said: “Steve bridged the gap between researcher and analyst: whilst his skills with data were exceptional, he also understood the reasons for research and could write export reports and presentations, picking out key findings in the data. People appreciated him not only for his considerable technical skills, but also the way he conversed with them in a friendly, humorous and passionate way.”

Jérome Sopoçiko, founder of Askia, said: “Steve had a nice warm voice with a metallic undertone, and he was a great public speaker with a contagious laugh… his laughter was almost conspiratorial – you and him knew something the others didn’t. Steve was passionate – and therefore easy to fall out with – but never for long. He loved people and they loved him back. I know I did.”

Richard Cornelius, who worked with Steve at ORC, said: “Steve had a very wide network of friends and colleagues and was very well-known and respected throughout the market research and survey computing industry and his passing will leave a big hole in many lives. As one of his old colleagues once said, he was just the right side of crazy. Gone, but never to be forgotten.”

Steve is survived by his partner, Lisa Jacobs, and their daughters Emily and Carla. His funeral will take place at 3pm on Monday, 5th March 2018 at Hawkinge Crematorium, Aerodrome Road, Folkestone CT18 7AG and the reception will be held at the Red Lion Pub, Red Lion Square, Hythe, Kent, CT21 5AU.   

Steve’s family would like it known that all are welcome to come along to the service and reception to pay their final respects and share their memories of Steve.

Please send donations to: Macmillan Cancer Support via Hambrook and Johns, 1 Dymchurch Road, Hythe, CT21 5AX.  Floral tributes can be sent to the same address.

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