Until the end of 2012, the Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland (RPII) operated a personal dosimetry service for workers in the medical, industrial, education and research sectors in Ireland. The data recorded by the RPII service were used to generate national dose statistics and as such acted as a National Dose Register (NDR). In preparation for the closure of the RPII dosimetry service in 2012, a formal NDR was introduced for the first time in Ireland and data on all monitored workers are now supplied to it annually by Approved Dosimetry Services. A new system for approving dosimetry services operating in Ireland was also introduced in 2012. The criteria for approval are based on the recommendations given in the European Commission's publication, ‘Radiation Protection No. 160’. This paper describes the steps involved and the operational experience gained in establishing both the NDR and the system for approval of dosimetry services.