Team GB is going for gold in 2012. So can you.

Everyone reading this stands to benefit – not just from making money or boosting employment and skills, but through a unique chance to play a part in the world’s greatest event and to showcase the talent of UK plc to billions of people worldwide.

So I am delighted to have the opportunity to introduce this important supplement from Building. I know it will be a valuable tool in helping the industry get the most out of the unique opportunities presented by the London 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games.

London 2012 is one of the most challenging projects faced by the industry for a generation. The sheer scale of the undertaking – twice the size of Terminal 5 in half the time – will provide some of the biggest contracts in Europe since the Channel Tunnel.

But more than that, it provides the opportunity to play a crucial part in staging the biggest sporting fixture in the world and have your work showcased to billions of people around the globe. Not too mention the chance to create a lasting legacy in east London and beyond that will affect the lives of millions of people in the UK for years to come.

We are already making good progress. The London Olympic Games and Paralympic Games Act became law in March – nine months after London won the 2012 Games; work to place underground the power lines that currently dominate the Olympic Park is well advanced; we have an impressive team at the Olympic Delivery Authority and an experienced delivery partner on board with an outstanding track record of delivery.

We also have signed a groundbreaking agreement with the industry – the 2012 Construction Commitments. This will promote a joined-up approach in all areas of the construction process from procurement and integration to health and safety.

For example, the ODA will work within the project team from the outset to identify and manage risk; and will develop and share a detailed brief with clear financial objectives and definition of success before the design stage. This will be crucial in avoiding the sort unnecessary conflict that can paralyse projects.

The message from government is clear: we will ensure that London 2012 will be the best Games ever, delivered to the highest standards in design, safety and sustainability. But we need your best endeavours. It is essential that government, London 2012 and the industry work as one. If we do this – and I am certain we can – then we will not only put on an exceptional Games but create a template for collaborative working that will revolutionise the industry.

It is a challenging task and it will not be easy. But if we get it right, the rewards are huge. I am convinced we will and that the British construction industry has outstanding contribution to make. Together we can deliver truly inspirational venues and infrastructure that will be the pride of the nation for years to come.

Tessa Jowell, Olympics minister