Here is a very good guide on how to sign on for the dole.
Signing on: a step-by-step guide
1 If you lose your job you are entitled to claim either jobseekers benefit or jobseekers allowance from the Department of Social and Family Affairs.
2 You qualify for jobseekers benefit if you have paid 104 PRSI contributions, or “stamps”, since first starting work. Thirty-nine payments must have been paid in the relevant tax year. This benefit is not means-tested. (If you are unsure about your PRSI record, you can contact the Department of Social and Family Affairs at 01-7043000 and ask for the PRSI section.)
3 If you don’t have enough “stamps” you can apply for jobseekers allowance, which is means-tested.
4 You must make an appointment with your local social welfare office to make a claim. To check where your nearest dole office is, go to www.welfare.ie
6 You are required to bring a range of documentation (again go to www.welfare.ie for the complete list), including a P45, P60, proof of identity and residence, and an RP50 form if you have been made redundant. You will also be expected to provide proof that you are making efforts to seek work.
7 At this meeting your claim will be discussed and forms filled in. According to the department, the average processing time in December was two weeks for jobseekers benefit and five weeks for jobseekers allowance. However, in some parts of the country the processing time for the jobseekers allowance is as long as 15 weeks.
8 While waiting for a decision you can apply for a means-tested supplementary welfare allowance payment. Applications should be made to the Community Welfare Office at your local health centre.
9 Once your claim has been authorised you will be obliged to sign on once a month at your dole office, and to collect your money once a week at the post office.
10 For advice, you can speak in confidence to the welfare-to-work section of the Irish National Organisation for the Unemployed ( www.inou.ie ) at 01-8560088, Monday to Friday, between 9.30am and 5pm or go to Social Welfare website - Unemployed section.
Taken from Irish Times - Article "Getting to grips with life on the dole"