The isolation level option usually improves performance compared to other options. This reads all uncommitted data. No need to wait for till lock is released on the page or row.
The other option is SKIP LOCKED DATA
SELECT ELEMENT FROM WORKQUEUE WHERE PRIORITY = '1' AND STATUS='OPEN' SKIP LOCKED DATA;
What is SKIP LOCKED DATA?
The SKIP LOCKED DATA option allows a transaction to skip rows that are incompatibly locked by other transactions when those locks would hinder the progress of the transaction. Because the SKIP LOCKED DATA option skips these rows, the performance of some applications can be improved by eliminating lock wait time.
However, you must use the SKIP LOCKED DATA option only for applications that can reasonably tolerate the absence of the skipped rows in the returned data. If your transaction uses the SKIP LOCKED DATA option, it does not read or modify data that is held by locks.