We're not just recovering from the recession, we're heading into boom times in 2015. Here's how to shift your salary negotiation strategy to make sure you don't miss out on the benefits you deserve.

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Stuck in a dead-end job? Tired of putting in extra hours and not feeling appreciated? Perhaps it’s time to take some sage career advice from “The Onion.” OK, maybe it’s not time to just quit. But it might be a good idea to reassess your value before your next interview.

The years of the Great Recession were so hard, it’s difficult to see how far the economy has come back. Nationally, we just added another 257,000 jobs nationwide, but the positive vibrations are being felt the strongest right here in Seattle.

According to latest “Demand for Skilled Talent” report from staffing firm Robert Half, 43 percent of executives said there has been an increase in requests for raises, compared to 2012, and four out of 10 said they were more willing to negotiate starting pay with top candidates. Sounds like it’s time to start blowing the cobwebs off your interview negotiation skills.

Make them mention pay first. In the NFL, they say that “offense wins games, but defense wins championships.” (Just ask Malcolm Butler.) If you feel it’s time for the salary question to arise, hold your tongue and wait for them to start. Make sure that they make the first offer, so you know what ballpark you’re in.

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Give them the silent treatment. This may take some restraint, but once they do come up with a figure, just sit and nod for a bit. Mull it over in your mind before you respond yes or no. You may feel the tension rise in the room, but the pressure will be felt more in the interviewer — especially if you think you’re being lowballed. The extra few seconds of contemplation might be just enough to get them to budge in your direction.

Know your net worth. Do some research on the average pay other workers your age and in your position typically make. Try the Salary Wizard at NWjobs’ Career Center. Then look at your work history, your growth in your profession and the current responsibilities the new job requires. This way, if you feel the first offer is too low, you have some persuasive numbers to back up your arguments.

Think of some non-monetary perks. Here’s where you may have a shot at improving your work/life balance. If the magic number can’t be reached, suggest some other forms of compensation, such as flexible hours, working from home certain days of the week, subsidized bus passes or parking spaces, or other perks that might make your life easier.

Aim high and be confident. Remember, you’re not begging for charity, you’re negotiating your true worth to the company. Counteroffer a salary a few thousand above your market worth and make it definitive statement, not a question. If they balk, you can show you’re willing to bargain without giving too much ground on your target salary.

Randy Woods is a writer and editor in the Puget Sound business publishing arena and a veteran of the local job-search scene. Email him at randywoods67@gmail.com.